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Know Your Fats : The Complete Primer for Understanding the Nutrition of Fats, Oils and Cholesterol Paperback – May 14, 2000

ISBN-13: 978-0967812601 ISBN-10: 0967812607 Edition: Later Printing Used

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 358 pages
  • Publisher: Bethesda Pr; Later Printing Used edition (May 14, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0967812607
  • ISBN-13: 978-0967812601
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.9 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,543 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dr. Mary G. Enig, a nutritionist/biochemist of international renown for her research on the nutritional aspects of fats and oils, is a consultant, clinician, and the Director of the Nutritional Sciences Division of Enig Associates, Inc., Silver Spring, Maryland. Dr. Enig, a consultant on nutrition to individuals, industry, and state and federal governments, is a licensed practitioner in Maryland and the District of Columbia. She has served as a Contributing Editor of the scientific journal Clinical Nutrition and a Consulting Editor of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. Dr. Enig has authored numerous journal publications, mainly on fats and oils research and nutrient/drug interactions, and is a well-known invited lecturer at scientific meetings and a popular interviewee on TV and radio shows about nutrition. She was an early and articulate critic of the use of trans fatty acids and advocated their inclusion in nutritional labeling; the scientific mainstream is now challenging the food product industry's use of trans-containing partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. She received her Ph.D. in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Maryland, College Park, and is a Fellow of The American College of Nutrition, a member of The American Society for Nutritional Sciences, and President of the Maryland Nutritionists Association.

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Customer Reviews

This book by Mary Enig, Ph.
K. Johnson
The vegetable oil industry has promoted the idea that saturated fats are bad and that hydrogenated vegetable oils are good.
Steven A. Brown
It's easy to read and understand.
T. Marshall

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

268 of 279 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Byrnes on July 4, 2002
Format: Paperback
This book, written by one of the world's leading lipid biochemists, is a much needed title in today's "fat-phobic" world. Discarding politically correct notions that saturated fats are unhealthy, Dr. Mary Enig presents a thorough, in-depth, and understandable look at the world of lipids.
The publication of Know Your Fats is a rare treat: it is, to this reviewer's knowledge, the ONLY book on fats and oils for the consumer and the professional written by a recognized authority in the field. Virtually all of the titles on fats and oils in print now are either too technical to be accessible by the layman, or are too error-laden to be worth the paper they are printed on.
Mary Enig made her mark in the nutritional world in 1978 when she and her colleagues at the University of Maryland published a now-famous paper in the American journal Federation Proceedings. The paper directly challenged government assertions that higher cancer rates were associated with animal fat consumption. Enig, et al, concluded that the data actually showed vegetable oils and trans-fatty acids to be the culprits in both cancer and heart disease--not naturally saturated fats that people have been eating for millennia. In the ensuing years, Enig and her colleagues focused their work on determining the trans-fatty acid content of various food items, as well as publishing research that clearly demonstrated TFA's to be potent carcinogens, prime factors in heart disease, disruptors of immune function, and worse.
Enig's book begins like any other on lipid biochemistry and discusses the nature of saturates, monounsaturates, polyunsaturates, and trans-fatty acids. Included also is a revealing discussion of cholesterol and its vital importance to the body.
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111 of 114 people found the following review helpful By Jon Norris TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 19, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is quite simply the best book available on lipid chemistry in nutrition that is accessible to non-scientists. It lists and describes the actions of fats in our diet, and the role fats play in our body chemistry and health. Dr. Enig takes us all the way from chemical formulas and molecular diagrams to descriptions of various kinds of oils and fats used in cooking, as well as the sources and makeup of different types of oils and fats.
Dr. Enig pulls no punches in discussing misunderstood or misused research, and this honesty is welcome and refreshing, not to mention possibly life saving. It is so tiresome trying to wade through the hype and PR noise around nutrition. Like medical research, the food business is about Big Money, and truth seems to be a stranger to that part of our society. More and more, one must become an informed advocate for one's own health and welfare. This book is an important tool for the enlightened consumer.
The book is well written in a very clear style with no extraneous scientific jargon. It is well referenced and cited, which I like in a book that discusses scientific research. These days people have much more access to original research papers than ever before.
If you get only one book on fats in your diet, this should be it. The research and information is solid, free of fads and commercial influence.
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109 of 112 people found the following review helpful By Jerry Cott on December 27, 2000
Format: Paperback
The role of fats and oils in human health has received enormous attention in recent years. Popular media are filled with articles about dietary fat, and what we should and should not be eating. Medical organizations such as the American Heart Association have recently published new guidelines concerning new dietary recommendations with an increased emphasis on omega-3 oils - [...]
While this book is primarily for the layman, it provides a sufficient detailed overview of lipid biology, biochemistry and physiology that professional readers will find it very useful. Journalists who write about these health areas should be especially encouraged to study it. Indeed, anyone seeking an understanding of the role that dietary fats play in human health and disease should give this a read. The style is succinct and jargon free, with many illustrations and useful tables that not only facilitate an understanding of the material covered, but serve as a source of information for future reference. It provides an in-depth discussion of the many facts and fantasies regarding dietary fats and oils. A General Glossary of terms, common to fats and oils in foods and lipids in biological systems, is included at the end of the book.
A distinctive aspect of the book is the challenge to the scientific community which she feels is partly responsible for propagating many of our current misunderstanding regarding the health risks and benefits of various dietary fats. Dr. Enig was an early and outspoken critic of the use of trans fatty acids and has advocated their inclusion in nutritional labeling, so that we can more easily avoid them. In addition to her views on partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, she is critical of other mainstream beliefs, including the decision to vilify tropical oils many years ago.
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65 of 67 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 26, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is one of the better nutrition books available today. I learned a lot, and Dr. Enig wrote it in a way that made it understandable to the non-lipid chemists among us who would be reading it. She has done the world a great service by explaining the real place in the human diet for saturated fats and cholesterol. I "lived" on a fat-free diet for about 15 years, and in that time managed to disrupt every major endocrine and metabolic process in my body. When I came to my senses (thanks to a book called "The Metabolic Trap" by Calvin Ezrin, MD), and began to add meat and fat back into my diet, I was able to reverse EVERY SINGLE SYMPTOM. With no medications, no special medical treatment, no doctors, I restored my health by simply replacing SATURATED FATS in my diet. Nothing else. My overall cholesterol at my last test was 179, and my blood pressure remains in the low-normal range. This book vindicated what I had already figured out, and explained it in terms simple enough for anyone to understand. I used up a whole yellow marker on it, and was pleased with the careful and thorough way she explained each fatty acid and its role in metabolism. I am really glad she stood her ground in the face of the criticism I am sure she suffered for her stand, which is 180 degrees opposed to the current medical "wisdom" of "Eat lots of carbs!" "Don't eat saturated fats!" "Don't eat cholesterol!" The standard American diet (correctly and aptly acronymed "SAD") is a mishmosh that consists of 65% BREAD ("complex carbohydrates").Read more ›
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