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Beyond Broccoli, Creating a Biologically Balanced Diet When a Vegetarian Diet Doesn't Work Paperback – August 20, 2011


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Editorial Reviews

Review

I first met Susan Schenck in the summer of 2009 in New York City, having already been introduced to her 600-page book, The Live Food Factor ... which I found full of a wealth of valuable information and advocacy of a vegetarian diet, even more so of the vegan diet and lifestyle. ...

During our first conversation, I told Susan about my experiences as a vegetarian (lacto-ovo) for more than 15 years, then as a Natural Hygienist, then about my many fasts totaling well over 1,000 days, one year on a 100 percent vegan diet followed by a two-year extension of the same raw vegan diet, then with my experiment with testing a 100 percent raw diet including raw animal food and meat for over ten years, also pointing out the dangers of heavy fruit eating and high-carbohydrate diet.

I told her about many patients of mine and the near-miraculous results which followed by a strict curtailment of high carbohydrates in the diet. Also about people who develop severe deficiencies in vitamins A, B12, D3, K, proteins, hormones, etc. on a strict vegan diet lasting two or more years, and then making rapid recover­ies in a matter of weeks just by adding a small amount of raw animal foods to their diets. ...

Susan, after reading your new book in its entirety, I was greatly impressed by the extent and breadth of the research you did on the history of primitive man and the paleolithic diet, wherein you proved the superior health and success man experienced by the use of meat and animal food for almost three million years of history. This is one of the very best I have read on the subject, and I will recommend it highly to all who are instructed in superior health.
                --Dr. Stanley S. Bass, ND, DC, PhC, PhD, DO, DSc, DD


Schenck, an ex-vegan, offers a holistic look at eating a mostly raw, meat-enriched diet, and how it benefits our physical health and spiritual well-being.

Schenck (The Live Food Factor, 2009), following years of coping with deficiencies in her body caused by living on a restricted raw vegan diet, has made a daring 90-degree turn: daring because the vitriol cast upon meat eaters from vegans and vegetarians can be extreme. Her book is, in part, as much a study of diets as it is an interesting window into the vegan and vegetarian communities. Although the author now eschews a strict vegan diet, she remains committed to eating a largely raw diet. Using numerous scientific studies inside and outside the “veg” box in addition to conclusions drawn from personal observations made by herself and other eaters, particularly fellow ex-vegans, Schenck explains why peak, long-term health for most people cannot be attained without at least some meat in their diet (by meat, she includes poultry and seafood). Schenck details a fascinating discussion of our evolutionary diet, much of which supports her argument that meat is a natural, crucial part of eating well, particularly for the healthy growth of brain tissue. In striking contrast to our apparently ancient diet is the relatively new and faulty low-fat, low-cholesterol diet promoted by the USDA. Schenck describes this transition as one of the great health cons of the 20th century—a conspiracy that benefits grain growers and drug companies, and results in increased obesity and diabetes among Americans. In one of the book’s final chapters, Schenck imparts a well-reasoned, impassioned argument for eating small quantities of good quality, wild or humanely raised meat, and eating it mindfully, with thanks given to the animal who gave its life. Though Schenck impressively elucidates the complex nutritional analysis and competing dietary theories for the lay reader, the book would benefit from a glossary defining the repeatedly used, lesser-known words, like opioids and mitochondria, as well as the dozens of acronyms used in the diet and nutrition fields. Ironically, an ex-vegan has made an impressively convincing case for how to sustainably eat meat, with the well-being of the animal in mind.

An enthusiastic, compelling, exhaustively researched argument from an unlikely source.

-Kirkus Indie Review

From the Back Cover

This is one of the very best I have read on the subject, and I will recommend it highly to all who are instructed in superior health. --Dr. Stanley S. Bass, ND, DC, PhC, PhD, DO, DSc, DD

I believe this is a very timely and important book, and commend Susan for her courage in bearding the lion in his den, as she confronts the issues involved in vegetarianism/veganism versus omnivorism. And yes, many seem to be, and are, successful in their vegetarianism/veganism. On the other hand, there are many who are not. This book gives credence and validity to those who are not. --Dr. John Fielder, hygienic doctor, Australia

This book is like a brainstorm on the topic of diet. I applaud Susan's courage for boldly opening up this controversial discussion, as it is the only way to find the truth. --Victoria Boutenko, raw diet author of Green for Life, 12 Steps to Raw Foods, and Green Smoothie Revolution

I especially admire how this author readily admits how her former judgmental attitude towards people who continued to eat animal products has rebounded on her. And while she is now eating meat and other animal-based products, she has not wavered in her conviction in the importance of consuming mainly raw foods and lots of vegetables as the healthiest lifestyle. --LindaJoy Rose, PhD, author of Raw Fusion: Better Living Through Living Foods (volumes I & II)

I'm a smart guy. I know how to do research. But I still spent a lifetime struggling through the confusing maze of nutritional data to find a comfortable, healthy, ethical way to eat. This book could have saved me 30 years of pain if I found it as a teenager... Get it, read it, use it! --Glenn Livingston, PhD

After being on a 100% raw vegan diet for 15 years, I have come to the conclusion that it is not the ideal diet I once thought it was. I'm so thrilled a book is finally written on this topic. Thank you, Susan, for letting people know the real deal about healthy eating. I pray people can have an open mind and heart to understand why this information needs to be told. --Paul Nison, author of numerous raw food diet and health books
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 268 pages
  • Publisher: Awakenings Publications; first edition (May 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0977679527
  • ISBN-13: 978-0977679522
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.6 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,022,575 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

63 of 71 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Ballard on March 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
I graduated from naturopathic school in 1982 and run two clinics in the Seattle area. I've also written my own book, Nutrition-1-2-3. Lots of positive things have happened over the past 30 years. To mention three:
* Science is daily showing us the wisdom of treating the causes of diseases with natural medicine and the fallacy of treating symptoms with toxic drugs.
* We know much more about nutrition and the metabolic pathways that influence disease.
* More people are interested in eating better.

Regarding the third point; on the negative side there is massive amounts of misinformation and many people are adopting diets that are either inherently unhealthy or at least not healthy for them as an individual. I've been counseling sick vegetarians for 30 years and often find it difficult to overcome the false information that they've embraced. Not that vegetarianism is always unhealthy, some do quite well with it, but it is a diet that requires some basic information about foods (many don't know the difference between a protein and a starch), more work, and genetic favorability.

Because of this, I was excited to read Beyond Broccoli: Creating a biologically balanced diet when a vegetarian diet doesn't work. Susan Schenck, Lac does a good job of laying out many of the pitfalls of vegetarianism. In chapter 2 she lists 22 myths regarding protein, meat and vegetarianism and dispels them. She also has good chapters on the evolution of the human diet, the fat debate, and the missing nutrients in vegetarian diets. She even writes about the spiritual and environmental aspects of vegetarianism in a provocative way. Indeed the scope of this book is wide and very well organized.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 16, 2011
Format: Paperback
I've never been tempted to become a vegetarian, let alone a raw foods vegan, and after reading this book by Susan Schenck, LAc, I'm glad of it.

Schenck spent several years eating and promoting a raw vegan diet before realizing it was seriously compromising her health. She then curbed her carb intake and added animal-based protein. She has written about her experiences in Beyond Broccoli: Creating a Biologically Balanced Diet When a Vegetarian Diet Doesn't Work (247 pages, Awakening Publications, 2011).

Disclosure: I received a review copy of the book. I probably would not have bought a copy because the vegetarian hook doesn't work for me. Those who have chosen, or are thinking of choosing, a vegetarian diet, and who have some doubts about the choice, would be the primary audience for Beyond Broccoli.

That said, I enjoyed the book and learned from it. Schenck provides a comprehensive look at the historical, nutritional, cultural and even moral aspects of my favorite kind of diet: low-carbohydrate. She adds the additional wrinkle of a raw low-carb diet. Anyone interested in reducing carbs should find the book to be a useful resource. Still, the people who need to read it the most are those who are eating a vegan or vegetarian diet, and like Schenck experiencing nutrition-related health problems.

For people like that, the book could be a life-saver.

Susan Schenck is a Licensed Acupunturist with masters degrees from Indiana University and Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. (I also have a masters from Indiana, but as far as I know, we have never met.) Schenck's main credentials are her experience and her reading. Beyond Broccoli is thoroughly researched and documented. It contains 14 pages of notes and six pages of selected bibliography.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sunnydaze on January 29, 2013
Format: Paperback
Having read Ms Schenck's Live Food Factor, it is little wonder she failed on a raw vegan diet where she outlined her daily menu of juice and a few seeds for breakfast; salad with little or know dressing for lunch; and a raw soup for dinner. There would not be enough calories in that diet to even perform basic physiological functions. It is easy to see why her health was failing. A rabbit could barely exist on that menu! I myself am what I would define as a largely raw, fairly high fat pescetarian. I do however believe that some people can thrive on vegetarian and raw vegan diets if they are carefully executed. Unfortunately, like with most 'diets' this usually is not the case. A well balanced diet, with or without animal foods depends entirely on the individual to self educate, filter the information gathered and apply the knowledge learned. One could be eating a paleo diet that is unbalanced if the range of food included is not nutritionally diverse. Get informed, educate yourself by reading not just books, but peer reviewed articles and take the nutritional advice of Ms Schenck with a grain of salt. Save your hard earned money to spend on high quality nutritionally dense food instead.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca of Amazon HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 13, 2011
Format: Paperback
"Many vegans ruined their nervous systems and brains before B12 and DHA were discovered." ~ Susan Schenck

I have tried to be a vegetarian and lasted two weeks. I also have tried incorporating raw foods into my diet with some success. I've also read many diet books that left me feeling confused. What one expert tells you to eat, another denounces. By reading "Beyond Broccoli" I was hoping to find out more about a raw food diet and how to eat healthier. I was not disappointed. Susan Schenck has done her research and presents a very fair and balanced approach.

Why should pregnant women not be vegetarians?
Do vegetarians really live longer?
Did you know that eating an excess of fruit can cause cavities or even tooth loss?
What is the real cause of heart disease?
What is the real cause of the obesity epidemic?
When is the only time you can safely eat raw oysters?
Is living on a diet of soybeans and grains really toxic?

Susan Schenck answers these questions and more. I found reading this book to be a completely captivating experience. Throughout this book Susan also explains why a vegan or vegetarian diet is "inadequate for optimal health." She used to be a vegetarian and ate mostly raw foods and she did blood tests and was not happy with the result. For some reason her body can't handle being a pure vegetarian, she needs to eat some meat. Basically she had a deficiency of Vitamin B12 even though she took supplements and injections. When she started having memory problems she also feared that she might have caused damage to her central nervous system.

What this book really does is make a case for eating raw meat and other raw foods.
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