94 of 94 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2012
This book is written by two people who really seem to know their subject. They provide what seems to me to be a really well argued and informed thesis for why we should adopt a low-carb lifestyle. I had to go over some of the technical bits more than once but in general the book is a good read, I finished it in three sessions. I also found it very useful in taking me on from where Gary Taubes' 'Diet Delusion' ('Good Calories, Bad Calories' in the US) and 'Why we get fat' left off. After reading these three books I feel that I understand very clearly the politics of food and the mechanisms of good diet (not 'diet' as in 'dieting' but diet as in what you eat), how to eat well and how to keep my weight down. This book advocates a diet with more fat and higher salt levels than other authors (such as the otherwise excellent John Briffa) and has shown me where I can improve my regime and overcome one or two minor niggles which I do not remember taking in before. It really is a different perspective to what we have been brought up with for the past 30 - 40 years and as the authors note; if you are not prepared for that mind shift you won't get the most from it!
The book is reasonably priced as a Kindle book but for some reason seems to be very expensive as a paper book - don't understand that but I am happy with the Kindle option myself.
I have lost > 50lbs (5 trouser sizes!) in approx 18 months on a low carb diet, my numerous allergies have dissapeared along with my waist and I genuinely feel healthier than I have for years.
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on 24 January 2013
Due to the large amount of misunderstandings, myths and deliberate misinformation around the topic of living a low-carb lifestyle, many people trying to follow this diet will encounter severe 'resistance' from medical professionals - often including their own GP. This book is the *ideal* solution for that problem - simply buy a copy, hand it to the person and say "please read this, it was written for medical professionals, and then tell me if you still object to what I'm trying to do".
Having come from a scientific background, I bought this book because I wanted to get a better understanding of exactly how my low-carb diet was working.
This book is superbly written - but be warned - it appears to be aimed mainly towards GPs and the wider nutritional & medical professions. As such, I'd say it is not really a book written to provide dietary advice to 'lay persons'. It contains detailed descriptions of metabolic pathways, enzymes involved, in-depth endocrinology, biochemistry, etc.
Having said all that, I must say the *majority* of the book is quite 'readable' for non-scientific people ... but just be aware there are parts which sail way above the heads of us 'mere mortals'..!
This is a true **FIVE STAR** book, and should be compulsory reading for anyone seriously involved in nutrition or the medical treatment of obesity related conditions.
58 of 60 people found the following review helpful
on 8 June 2013
I've read just about every diet book on the market over the last 20 years looking for "the answer," the understanding that finally helps me shed my excess 6 stones (84 lbs!). I've even read and tried, but only with partial success, the original Atkins diet book. But nothing ever really stuck with me for more than a few weeks before I was back-sliding and looking for something else. This book changed everything. It filled in my understanding of low-carb dieting and put both the research basis and practicalities in place to make cutting carbs really work for me. As I have a scientific background (physics), I find it very hard to take seriously the low fat diet hypothesis (no evidence) and I cringe when someone says something about calories in/calories out, but this is a book written by people who actually understand their subject area deeply and their scholarship leaps off the page.
Cut a long story short: in my 40th year in the planet (32nd year as an obese person; 20th year as grossly obese), I have finally shed a ton of weight without any adverse effects (no headaches, lethargy, cotton-mouth, weird palpitations, and NO CRAVINGS) and feel better than I have in 2 decades. My stomach acid (which led to 2 ulcers) has gone completely - well, I mean, it is there but not causing any discomfort. The second best thing about this book, after the astonishing ease with which it's advice and understanding led me to lose weight, is that it fills in so many gaps in understanding that previous low carb and other diet books left. That means that I finally have proper answers for when doctors, colleagues and family get all stressed out with my diet being composed of about 95% (by calories) meat, fish and eggs. Though, their tone has changed over the last few months as they see that I am losing weight, full of energy (like, who knew sport was fun and the "let's do sport" feeling could come on spontaneously!), have overcome my severe forgetfulness, don't take proton pump inhibitors anymore, have cut my blood pressure from high 150s over mid 90s to low 120s over low 80s (happened in the first WEEK to those who claim it was the weight loss) without meds, sleep better than I can remember and feel like a new person.
I know this is a bit gushy (not a characteristic normally attributed to me), but these two authors have given me a new lease of life. Buy a few copies of this book; read one and give the rest to your doctor, dentist, nutritionist, local govt/state delegates, just basically everyone who needs a bracing dose of science and an understanding of how to fix things by changing what we all put in our mouths.
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 15 August 2011
This is a great source for those researching metabolic syndrome, diabetes, low carb diets, and healing and longevity in general. The authors synthesize a lot of material and their clinical experience. A must read.
46 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on 3 April 2012
In the last few years, low-carbohydrate diet has gradually been gaining acceptance among the public. There have been numerous books and articles proving the benefits of a low-carb diet and debunking the current low-fat dogma. However, most of them have been focusing on the WHY of low-carb diet, without showing the HOW. As someone who has been living low-carb for several months, I know from my experience and that of many others that it can be tricky to make the transition to low-carb diet painless and sustainable.
As the title suggests, that is what this book aims to do, and it has done it very successfully for me. The two authors are expert researchers in the field of low-carb diet, with more than 50 years of research and practice experience between them. In this book, they have distilled their knowledge on why and how to implement a low-carb diet down to a level accessible to the general public, without losing all of the scientific rigor. It starts from the very beginning of the journey, addressing many popular misconceptions such as "carbs are critical", "ketones are toxic", etc. It then goes on to show sound scientific evidence of how a low-carb diet is the proverbial silver bullet to insulin resistance and low-grade inflammation, the root cause of most of the chronic health problems nowadays. For example, the authors recount a clinical case of a severe diabetic patient, who could stop all insulin injection within one week of a very low-carb diet.
Perhaps the most valuable part of the book, in my opinion, is near the end, where the authors offer ten tips from their experience on what to look out for when transitioning to a low-carb diet. Things such as how low is a low-carb diet; what to replace the carb with to provide you with enough energy; the two weeks of fatigue at the beginning of the transition, etc. It gave me, and it will give you the confidence to stick to the diet in the face of contrary advice from mainstream media and doctors, and opposition from family and friends. I wouldn't have been able to do it otherwise.
In summary, this is another must-read book if you are planning on embarking on changing your diet and living style, or if you just want to find out what the buzz about low-carb is all about.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 30 September 2012
This book is a "must read" for anyone interested in low carbohydrate eating or even healthy eating for that matter. I bought it on kindle,which was a reasonable price, but would pay twice as much for it.
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
This is perhaps the clearest and most compelling book on low carb eating I've come across - having read much on this subject over the last few decades.
An outstanding, detailed, practical and, at the same time, often surprisingly witty book about health improvements created by a diet that includes saturated fat and excludes starchy and sugary carbohydrates. These top researchers offer a rewarding and enlightening discussion, quite unique in the current low carb literature. The sections on how saturated fats track with overall health and how low carb, high fat diets reduce inflammation, and why someone on a low-carb diet may want to increase their intake of sodium and magnesium, are all fascinating.
Yes, this book is controversial. As the authors write, "If you want clear, unabridged, and hard-hitting nutrition science, buy this book. If you want the mainstream consensus view, put it down gently and tip-toe quietly away."
One of the most important points covered is the starting, or induction, phase of the diet. Many people abandon a low carb diet within two weeks because of weakness or other debilitating symptoms. The book discusses the causes and remedies to get through this early stage and emphasises that the diet must be truly low carbohydrate to work; some must reduce carbohydrate intake to as little as 20 grams per day to reduce weight, blood sugar levels, blood pressure, etc. in a significant way. I haven't seen this information anywhere else.
However, I have to point out that there is a large minority who do not succeed in weight loss or health improvements even on an extremely low carb diet. The reason is low thyroid: hypothyroidism is being called a silent epidemic (silent because not officially acknowledged) that affects between 40% and 60% of the population. Carbs are our enemy, but it is not enough to cut out carbs. Such people would benefit from reading:
- "Hypothyroidism Type 2" ("Type 2" meaning thyroid problems for which there are no lab tests) which shows how much of poor health and all chronic pain is linked to low thyroid, including those involved with diabetes, heart problems, both bleeding (like gums, periods) & blood clots (including strokes) and some cancers; and
- Stop The Thyroid Madness (STTM) - I think this is the MOST important book and there is also a very helpful website with the same name; both are patient-empowering, detailed and practical - for low thyroid and also adrenal insufficiency. (Those with low thyroid and low adrenals actually get worse with exercise and dieting - because both are stressful and stress makes us worse.)
There are no lab tests for most causes of low thyroid and doctors only treat lab tests, not you. Both STTM website and book explain a quick and easy self/home test for identifying low thyroid in yourself, the basal temperature test, which is the gold standard for identifying thyroid problems (although most conventional doctors, including endos, don't agree, but then they're not trained to understand thyroid problems). thyroiduk[dot]org[dot]uk offers a list of the very few thyroid sympathetic doctors in this country
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 15 July 2012
This is probably the best book on low-carb diet if you're also interested in some of the science behind it. If you simply want directions on how to do good low-carb then get "New Atkins For a New You" or another similar book.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 22 July 2012
This book provides extremely in-depth information to the ins and outs of low carb living. The book delves very deep into the science aspect but is relatively easy to follow for people out-with the medical profession. I would highly recommend this book to anyone and would suggest that all should adopt the principles within the book.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on 11 March 2013
This book is well argued and evidenced. Prior to reading this I had my doubts about the health aspects of low -carb dieting (in spite of losing weight and feeling great) because of all the "low-fat is healthy" information that is pumped out continuously at us.
Following this advice I eat a healthy and delicious diet that is easy to maintain, and I am comfortable with the science. Kudos to the authors for having the courage to challenge the status quo. Never easy! I often thought to myself that in an age of Low-fat this and that why are so many people fat? This book explains why. The science is a bit heavy at times but worth taking the effort to understand.