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659 of 667 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Boost Your Immunity with a Healthy Diet
As part of my work as a freelance writer I am often reviewing diet books and spend a fair amount of my time keeping up with the latest diet trends and reading the publications that are hot off the press. But after reading many versions of the same types of calorie-controlled diets, reformulated with a supposedly `new' twist, I find I am often left feeling less than...
Published on October 13, 2011 by Mizpah Matus

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153 of 170 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars needs index
I'm reluctant to bash a book that promotes a vegetarian diet, but I was disappointed to find that this book lacks an index. So, for instance, if you wanted to look up where a particular food, mineral or concept was discussed, you can't do it because there's no index. The table of contents is at such a high level as to be useless to find anything. Indexes can be...
Published on March 10, 2012 by Redgecko


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659 of 667 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Boost Your Immunity with a Healthy Diet, October 13, 2011
This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
As part of my work as a freelance writer I am often reviewing diet books and spend a fair amount of my time keeping up with the latest diet trends and reading the publications that are hot off the press. But after reading many versions of the same types of calorie-controlled diets, reformulated with a supposedly `new' twist, I find I am often left feeling less than inspired.

However, every now and then I am pleasantly surprised with a diet program that, not only holds my personal interest, but also is also solid in its approach to nutrition that truly supports the health and well being of its readers.

Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free is one such book. It is written by Dr. Joel Fuhrman - who specializes in preventing and treating disease with a high-nutrient plant-based diet - and is also the author of Eat For Health.

One of the aspects of Fuhrman's work that I appreciate is his emphasis on improving our health by paying attention to the quality of the foods we eat. Fuhrman's philosophy is centered on consuming those foods that have a high ratio of nutrients in relation to their calories. By focusing on micronutrient rich super foods we can boost our immunity to ward off colds and flus, as well as protect ourselves from conditions such as autoimmune disorders, heart disease and cancer.

In Super Immunity, Fuhrman outlines how certain foods including leafy green vegetables, mushrooms, onions, garlic, pomegranate, berries and seeds can improve our natural defenses. All of his claims are well supported by up-to-date scientific research.

For example, mushrooms contain substances called aromatase inhibitors that significantly reduces the risk of breast cancer. "In one recent study, women who ate at least 10 grams of fresh mushrooms each day (equivalent to just one small mushroom) had a 64 percent decreased risk of breast cancer. Even more dramatic protection was gained by women who ate 10 grams of mushrooms and consumed green tea daily." (Up to 89 percent decrease in risk.)

In addition to emphasizing immune-strengthening and cancer-fighting foods, Fuhrman outlines guidelines to help readers to adapt a Super Immunity diet.

Focus on foods that are high in nutrients and prepare meals at home.
Eat at least one large green salad every day and ideally two.
Include at least an ounce of raw nuts and seeds and one serving of beans in the diet every day.
Preferably avoid animal products but at least limit intake to 10 oz. per week for women and 12 oz. per week for men.
Fruits and vegetables should comprise 90% of your caloric intake.

A two-week meal plan is included along with 85 `super immunity' recipes. The meal plan is vegan but a few of the recipes provide options for dieters who prefer not to completely eliminate animal products.

Fuhrman is not an advocate of a 100% raw diet, so the recipes include a combination of raw and cooked meals. The emphasis is on whole foods, so oils are used very sparingly, with raw nuts and seeds being the main source of fat in the diet.

Fruits and vegetables form the basis of every meal and portion sizes are generous, so you certainly won't go hungry on this plan. However, because of the high fiber and water content of the meals, the diet is naturally low in calories, making it a perfect program for dieters who want to lose weight but also enjoy eating large meals.

Here is an example of a day's eating on the Super Immunity Plan:

Breakfast: Forbidden Rice Pudding (ingredients include black rice, soy or almond milk, dried apple, wild blueberries, cinnamon and vanilla)

Lunch: Spinach Salad with Strawberry Sesame Vinaigrette, Tangy White Beans and Zucchini

Dinner: Raw snow peas, broccoli and carrots, Island Black Bean Dip, Braised Kale and Squash with pumpkin seeds

Dessert: Black Cherry Sorbet

Super Immunity includes recipes for both raw and cooked plant-based meals and will appeal to vegans as well as anyone interested in improving their health through a better diet. For those of us who prefer to eat a raw food diet here is a list of some of the raw food recipes included in this book:

Cinnamon Apple Omega Milk
Detox Green Tea
Waldorf Blended Salad
Marinated Kale Salad
Rainbow Chopped Salad
Triple Treat Cabbage Salad
Golden Onion Morsels
Chunky Blueberry Walnut Sorbet
Coconut Carrot Cream Pie
Golden Delicious Truffles

Overall I found the book to be an enjoyable read and I picked up on a few key concepts that will no doubt improve my overall diet. While many of these were factors that I already was aware of, it is helpful to be reminded of the reasons why these foods are so good for us, because this helps to maintain the motivation to be consistent in making intelligent food choices.
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355 of 364 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Medically Proven Way to Boost Your Immunity, October 19, 2011
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
You may have read Dr. Fuhrman's other book "Eat to Live" and wonder what's new in store with Super Immunity, or is it just a rehash of the same information.

While you will not find radically different information in Super Immunity -- it's the same good Fuhrman diet philosophy -- this book covers critical information about your health that I've personally never seen before in such an easy-to-digest format.

It would be easy to summarize the book by saying "Eat your vegetables!" but Super Immunity goes beyond that.

Yes, there's a ton of research that shows that phytochemicals found in certain vegetables have literally boost our immunity and can fight off cancer. The top foods recommended to add to your diet are:

- Kale, collards, mustard greens
- Arugula, watercress
- Most greens and cabbage
- Broccoli, brussel sprouts
- Carrots, tomatoes
- Onion, garlic
- Mushrooms
- Pomegranates
- Berries of all kinds
- Seeds (like sesame, flax, etc.)

The book covers a lot more information, such as:

- The pros and cons of certain vaccines. Why most people would not be advised to take a flu shot every year.
- How diet alone can not only prevent but help reverse cancer
- How exactly nutrition can increase our immunity and help us avoid contagious diseases
- Simple tips I found very useful to further improve our immunity and avoid viral illnesses.
- The controversy on being a complete vegan or not, what the science actually says about it

The recipes are excellent but similar to what's found in other books by Fuhrman.

What I like about Dr. Fuhrman is that he's obsessed about optimal nutrition, but he's also a scientist. Some radical natural hygienist claim that the entire germ theory is a scam and that viruses never cause illnesses, but those claims are not supported by science.

Furhman shows you how you can dramatically increase your immunity so that' you'll never catch a flu, even when a lot of people are sick.

I've lived something close to the recommended lifestyle for over 12 years and although I occasionally got a cold, I've never had a flu in all that time and the more closely I followed the recommendations, the healthier I've become.

It's not an "all or nothing" lifestyle. You can pick and choose what you incorporate in your life. If you've read other books like those by Dr. McDougall or Esselstyn, the Furhman books, including Super Immunity, are great additions.
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234 of 257 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As I sit here at my desk thoroughly chewing my broccoli..., September 26, 2011
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
What an exciting premise! Nutrition and exercise not only can stave off deadly diseases, such as cancer and heart disease, but irritants such as colds and flu.

The scientific explanations for this were clear and persuasive - and consistent with real life. I liked the refutation of America's obsession with medicines and medical treatments for everything - while medicine has its place, pharmaceuticals come with frightening risks, and lifestyle changes are definitely preferable.
Dr. Fuhrman does not mince words - the life expectancy increases in the past 100 years, he explains convincingly, are due much more to improvements in plumbing and sanitation, and decreases in child and childbirth mortality rather than the new blood pressure/cholesterol/heart and cancer drugs and surgeries. Who knew? I guess rather than my doctor I have my counsin Joe, a retired plumber, to thank for my longevity. Actually this, like the other explanations, is quite original but makes a lot of sense.

I also really liked the specific and original instructions for dietary changes needed - you should chew cruciferous vegetables very thoroughly to release their minerals (ok, it kind of makes you feel like an idiot to sit there and chew and chew and chew, but hey, its for your health). Mushrooms, green vegetables, black rice and onions are powerhouses of nutrients, to be included almost every day. Red wine has resveritral, which is good for your health (Cheers! I like this health advice. Nuts and seeds are critical to health, and do not increase obesity (I loved that! I always felt guilty eating tasty nuts because I kept hearing they were fattening, so this is good news!) A low fat diet is actually very unhealthy, and the reason many people give up on vegetarian/vegan diets. (Yeah! Love this insight! I've found myself feeling worn down when I try to follow a low fat vegetarian/mostly vegan diet, but thought it was due to lack of discipline. I'm a vegetarian, and will try to incorporate more tasty nuts and seeds in my diet - I want to be successful for ethical reason, so this is a great tip to help me succeed as a vegetarian/ mostly vegan. The book is bursting with little tidbits and tips like this, which are a wonderful addition to the general premise of an eating pattern to stay healthy.

The recipes looked very tasty, and I'm psyched to try some.

As for the daily menu plans, I am humbled. Are there really people out there in this day and age who are so disciplined and organized as to cook a full original breakfast, lunch and dinner every day? They have my unstinting admiration. In the morning after fighting with the snooze alarm, playing with the cats, and exercising (as the book suggests!) I barely have time to pee, let alone cook a full unique breakfast, and still get to work by eight. Dr. Fuhrman said cold cereals were bad but hey...its better than nothing. And this was the one thing about the book that confused me = are whole grain breads and cold cereals (bran flakes, fiber one, etc) bad or good? Good, I hope. But from reading the book, I couldn't figure it out.

Overall this is an excellent book, and I would highly recommend it.
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153 of 170 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars needs index, March 10, 2012
This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
I'm reluctant to bash a book that promotes a vegetarian diet, but I was disappointed to find that this book lacks an index. So, for instance, if you wanted to look up where a particular food, mineral or concept was discussed, you can't do it because there's no index. The table of contents is at such a high level as to be useless to find anything. Indexes can be generated automatically by computer software, so it's unacceptable for a reference book of this nature to be without an index.

Four stars for the content, but 2 stars for the execution.
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61 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps Dr. Fuhrman's best book yet, October 18, 2011
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
I've been following Dr. Fuhrman's work since 2007, and this book and the updated edition of Eat to Live are his best. Both are super-loaded with information that can change your health dramatically. (We're vegan, so follow the vegan-style plans, but there are nonvegetarian plans in the books that will work for anyone.)

Even before I read this one, I haven't had a flu, sinus infection, serious cold, or other virus in three years, thanks to eating the way Dr. Fuhrman recommends. My allergies have practically disappeared. I can't remember the last time I had a headache. I also have "excellent" BP, cholesterol, fasting blood sugar, etc., according to my most recent physical--definitely not always the case in the past. That means I'm protected against diseases like CAD, diabetes, and cancer as well, despite my family history. And the food is good too (once you get used to eating more volume in veggies and fruit)!

As with all of his books and articles, every assertion is backed up. The 20+ pp. appendix of research references in the back could keep you busy for years. Or you could just eat your GOMBBS (greens, onions, mushrooms, berries, beans, seeds).
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58 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Keeps Getting Better, October 10, 2011
By 
azmissdaisy (Scottsdale, AZ USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
Dr. Joel Fuhrman is the one true voice to listen to when it comes to diet and nutrition. He is thorough in his research and with the success stories of his patients is proving that his beliefs are not only sound but work. When you read his words you just know that it all makes sense. I love Eat To Live and and am thrilled with Eat For Health and thought what could be new in Super Immunity? Let me just say- LOTS. He has done it again!

After reading this book, I feel like I have a clear picture of where disease comes from, what to do to prevent it and how to go about reversing it in it's tracks. Every thing from colds and flus and what to do about them, including a thoughtful and scientific overview of vaccines, so that people can make their own INFORMED decisions about these, to where cancer comes from and how to halt it's progression and even prevent it.

Cancer is not something that strikes people out of the blue or a rogue gene that needs tons of money to investigate. It is instead a direct result of processed and packaged foods being introduced and accepted as food in our society along with the lack of nutrients that the body needs for protection. If you are not eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables and super foods, you are walking around in a body with no "force field" against illness and disease. It's just a matter of time before disease and illness comes to call, unless you take proactive steps to stop it.

This book should be required reading for everyone as a user's manual for the body. Not only does it provide the science behind what is happening in the body, it spells out what foods to focus on and recipes on how to incorporate them into your daily lifestyle.

We as Americans are so out of touch with how to support our health and the real crime is that we are spreading our poisonous lifestyle and diet-born illnesses to the world around us. Wake up people, put down your cheeseburger, fries and soda and take charge of your own health and life.

I highly recommend this book! Another home run Dr. Fuhrman!
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review: Super Immunity, January 2, 2012
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
Joel Fuhrman, M.D.'s latest book, Super Immunity caught my eye since I have an auto-immune disease.

Fuhrman writes for the patient who wants to be involved in his treatment. The language is not overly technical, though he does use accurate terminology and chemical names which the patient may have need to discuss with his doctor.

This "manual" is comprehensive: in the first two chapters, he looks at the typical American diet and shows how we are compromising our immune systems by what we eat and how we live. He argues the evidence for health supports a largely vegan (no animal product) diet.

The third chapter looks at the positive influence of plant foods on the immune system - and the whole body.

In the fourth he looks at colds and the flu, mythology and scientific fact, making recommendations for avoiding and getting through sickness. One thing I did not know about that I will bring up with my doctor is resveratrol.

In the fifth chapter he addresses the myths and facts about carbs, fats, and protein.

The sixth chapter addresses exercise, salt, soy, and other "head-line" issues regarding health. In this chapter, I read about EPA and DHEA, which I will also be bringing up with my doctor.

The final chapter is a two-week recipe and meal plan for super immunity.

The book includes an extensive glossary.

I found this an excellent and persuasive book which I would recommend discussing with one's doctor.
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Super Immunity Review, February 23, 2012
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
First, I'd like to disclose that I became a proponent of Dr.Fuhrman's eating style about eight months ago after reading Eat To Live and a couple of his other books. Eat to Live, the best of his previous books, was primarily targeted toward those with significant weight issues, or those currently eating a standard American diet. None of that applied to me. I was already eating a plant based diet (except fish or eggs up to twice per week). I had already given up refined carbohydrates (i.e., sugar and refined grains). And I almost never consumed oils. In addition to that, I've engaged in 45 minutes of daily aerobic activity for many years, and I've also engaged in modest but regular weight lifting. I had never really had a significant weight issue, but in my early 60s I discovered that i needed to lose about 5-8 pounds. Unfortunately, I doubted that there was anything additional that I could do. As an active person, I've always enjoyed very large quantities of healthy food, and I wasn't about to change that.

After reading Dr. Fuhrman's books, however, I discovered one simple but important fact - I wasn't eating enough vegetables, especially leafy greens. Although I consumed at least some vegetables every day, after reading reading Dr. Fuhrman's books I began to add more and more vegetables, especially dark greens. I began to add them to every meal, and I made at least one of my meals a huge delicious salad sprinkled with fruits and nuts or seeds. Vegetable consumption displaced much of the vast quantity of whole grains that I had previously eaten. Within a couple of months I effortlessly dropped the 5-8 pounds that I didn't think was possible.

Super Immunity, Dr. Fuhrman's new book, emphasizes the protective benefits of the same diet (i.e., lots of vegetables, fruit, and legumes; some nuts, seeds, and whole grains; and very little of anything else. With extensive credible references, he makes the case that this diet can protect you against colds, the flu, cancers, heart and vascular diseases, and autoimmune disorders. He presents the current medical shortcomings in dealing with these same conditions. And finally, he presents common super foods that are readily available and delineates their protective attributes. I learned a lot from the book and definately recommend it.
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent basic info, December 15, 2011
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
All the information in this book is well-researched and the book has excellent footnoted references. If you've read Fuhrman's other books and/or explored the benefits of CR and nutrient dense eating, you won't get much new information, but I certainly wouldn't complain about this book on the basis of my own little obsessions. The only fault I find is that there is no index. A book containing a lot of detailed information about something as complex as nutrients and their effects on health and disease process really needs to have an index. Other than that this is a good resource with plenty of compelling information and all those inspiring anecdotal stories...the thread running through these stories (and you know those are going to be in there) isn't so much the amazing healing, which is great and much more predictable than we usually would expect, but the facts that most physicians are so averse to the idea that what we eat makes or breaks our overall health. I think this is a complicated issue, and I don't think most docs are bad people, but the system within which they work and are educated, the fact that many physicians, just like many non-physicians, have lousy eating habits which they really want to think are just fine, and not least that there is really no income or incentive to advise people to do something that is free and which will keep them healthy and out of their office, conspire to make this an unfriendly topic in your doctor's office. I think that's just fine - it will force us to seek out doctors like Joel Fuhrman (and they are out there!), and besides, we won't be needing to visit a doctor's office very often at all. If you follow these guidelines you WILL, absolutely, have the healthiest, most energized life full of glow and goodness that you can get. Have fun with it!
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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Information That is Backed By Scientific Evidence, October 13, 2011
By 
David Fox (Janesville, WI) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Super Immunity: The Essential Nutrition Guide for Boosting Your Body's Defenses to Live Longer, Stronger, and Disease Free (Hardcover)
Dr. Fuhrman's latest book is a great resource for getting healthy and staying healthy. This book contains a lot of useful information that is presented in an intelligent and clear manner. I appreciate that this book is concise and easy to understand. I was also pleased to see that Dr. Fuhrman backs up all of his claims with multiple scientific studies that prove his point.

I read his other book, "Eat to Live" this summer and have since lost 65 pounds by employing the "nutritarian" diet recommended by Dr. Fuhrman. I look and feel better now than I have since I was in my early 20's (I am now 35). Super Immunity contains some of the same information as "Eat to Live", but I felt it was presented in a more concise and clear manner in Super Immunity. This is the book I would give my friends and family who I know won't be motivated to make a change just to lose weight. Super Immunity gives them the same information, but with a focus toward helping to keep your immune system strong. I know a lot of people who are struggling with sick kids regularly and presenting the information in this context may be a stronger motivation for them to make some of the lifestyle changes recommended by Dr. Fuhrman.

I can't say enough good things about the resources that Dr. Fuhrman has provided. Excellent nutrition as the solution to so many of our health and weight issues is so simple, yet there are very few people talking about it. I am indebted to Dr. Fuhrman for opening my eyes to this. I know my family is on a track toward lifelong health as a result of this information!

This book is an excellent and quick read and this is the perfect time of year to be thinking about how to strengthen our immune systems.

If you are looking for some practical ideas for getting healthy and feeling better, I highly recommend reading this and "Eat to Live".
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