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The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-term Health [Hardcover]

by Thomas M. Campbell II, T. Colin Campbell
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2,092 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 11, 2004 1932100385 978-1932100389 1
Even today, as trendy diets and a weight-loss frenzy sweep the nation, two-thirds of adults are still obese and children are being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, typically an “adult” disease, at an alarming rate. If we’re obsessed with being thin more so than ever before, why are Americans stricken with heart disease as much as we were 30 years ago?

In The China Study, Dr. T. Colin Campbell details the connection between nutrition and heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. The report also examines the source of nutritional confusion produced by powerful lobbies, government entities, and opportunistic scientists. The New York Times has recognized the study as the “Grand Prix of epidemiology” and the “most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease.”

The China Study is not a diet book. Dr. Campbell cuts through the haze of misinformation and delivers an insightful message to anyone living with cancer, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and those concerned with the effects of aging.

[This book is also available in Spanish, El Estudio de China.]

Frequently Bought Together

The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-term Health + The China Study Cookbook: Over 120 Whole Food, Plant-Based Recipes + Whole: Rethinking the Science of Nutrition
Price for all three: $45.00

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Editorial Reviews


“[These] findings from the most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease are challenging much of American dietary dogma.”
The New York Times

“Reflects the profound changes that industrialization is bringing to diet and disease patterns in China, statistics that have had an impact on reevaluating dietary policy in the United States and worldwide.”
Washington Post

“Everyone in the field of nutrition science stands on the shoulders of Dr. Campbell, who is one of the giants in the field. This is one of the most important books about nutrition ever written—reading it may save your life.”
Dean Ornish, MD, Founder & President, Preventative Medicine Research Institute; Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco; Author, Dr. Dean Ornish's Program for Reversing Heart Disease and Love & Survival

“Colin Campbell’s The China Study is an important book, and a highly readable one. With his son, Tom, Colin studies the relationship between diet and disease, and his conclusions are startling. The China Study is a story that needs to be heard.”
Robert C. Richardson, PhD, Nobel Prize Winner; Professor of Physics and Vice Provost of Research, Cornell University

The China Study gives critical, life-saving nutritional information … Dr. Campbell’s exposé of the research and medical establishment makes this book a fascinating read and one that could change the future for all of us.”
Joel Fuhrman, MD, Author, Eat to Live

About the Author

T. Colin Campbell, PhD, is the project director of the China-Oxford-Cornell Diet and Health Project (the China Study), a 20-year study of nutrition and health. He is a Jacob Gould Schurman Professor Emeritus of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University. In more than 40 years of research he has received more than 70 grant-years of peer-reviewed research funding and authored more than 300 research papers. He lives in Ithaca, New York. Thomas M. Campbell II lives in Ithaca, New York.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 417 pages
  • Publisher: BenBella Books; 1 edition (December 11, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932100385
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932100389
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2,092 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,594 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1,632 of 1,746 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why, oh why didn't I take the blue pill? December 24, 2006
I love juicy steaks, delicious cheese, and big bowls of ice cream. I love to eat out at nice restaurants. And I really like eating without thinking about the operations and consequences of our dietary industrial complex. But I don't get to enjoy these things any more because I read the China Study. Like Neo in the movie the Matrix, you have a choice, take the blue pill and believe what you want to believe, take the red pill and you will be exposed to the reality of the world we live in. The China Study is the red pill.

This is a fascinating book on the capitalism, politics, and human behavior that drives the food industry. It is also frighteningly insightful into the health consequences of an affluent societies' diet. I am not a scientist so I don't know if this is good science. But I did work ten years ago as a government attorney on the USDA dietary guidelines and was surprised by the political influence and acceptance of what the author would call scientific reductionism. I also worked for a man who lived and worked until he was 100 years old, and he had a dietary regime very similar to that recommended by the China Study: not vegan nor vegetarian, but largely based on plants and whole foods rather than animal based foods. So I found this book very persuasive - in fact, too persuasive. It scared me straight so I eat healthy now and that's good for the long term...but I don't enjoy it like I used to.
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2,776 of 2,977 people found the following review helpful
T. Colin Campbell has made a career of challenging the conventional wisdom around nutrition, and this book is the culmination of his work. His integrity, brilliance, and unflinching courage shine through every page.

The main point of this book is that most nutritional studies that we hear about in the media are poorly constructed because of what the author terms "scientific reductionism." That is, they attempt to pin down the effects of a single nutrient in isolation from all other aspects of diet and lifestyle.

While this is the "gold standard" for clinical trials in the pharmaceutical world, it just doesn't work when it comes to nutrition. Given that the Western diet is extremely high fat and high protein compared to most of the rest of the world, studies that examine slight variations in this diet (i.e., adding a few grams of fiber or substituting skim milk for full fat milk) are like comparing the mortality rates of people who smoke five packs of cigarettes a day vs. people who smoke only 97 cigarettes a day.

Campbell's research, which he describes in a very accessible and engaging fashion, has two tremendous advantages over the typical nutritional study. First, there is the China Study itself - a massive series of snapshots of the relationship between diet and disease in over 100 villages all over China. The rates of disease differ greatly from region to region, and Campbell and his research partners (including some of the most distinguished scholars and epidemiologists in the world) carefully correlated these differences with the varying diets of the communities.

It's not lazy "survey research" either - the researchers don't rely on their subjects' memory to determine what they ate and drank.
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375 of 410 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The China Study August 23, 2011
By Cheryl
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I first became acquainted with this book by watching a segment this spring (2011) on the Dr. Oz show. I rented the book from the library and read it thoroughly (renewed it a maximum number for times and then decided I needed to own it). My husband and I decided to change our diet and try a vegan life style. We are in our 60's and want to maintain healthy weights (we've lost 35 and 20+ lbs)over the past four months and plan to enter our older years with few health problems. It was amazing to read about all the health situations which can be prevented by eating correctly--even how cancer cells can be turned on and off.

This book provided an excellent understanding of how important it is to eat correctly and the results we will see. My biggest disappointment is that when we share our reasons for our new eating plan with friends and family they aren't more interested in exploring this book and learning about how they can become healthier. Our feeling was, after reading this book, that we couldn't afford to not do this. I think people basically don't want to make changes, even if they will be healthier.
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739 of 833 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic! December 25, 2005
By Doxie
This is a fantastic book that's loaded with so much eye opening information, it's the kind of book that I'll read again. I feel if you don't convert to a whole food plant based diet after reading this book, I don't think anything in the world will convince you....the evidence is just overwhelming.

As for my story, I was on statins for high cholesterol for over 6 years....and a moderate to high dose at that. Over the years, my cholesterol kept rising gradually and my total cholesterol was just over 300 and a triglyceride level in the mid 200's without statins. The moderate/high dose statin brought my cholesterol down to the range of high 190's to low 200's. Over the years, I tried to get off the medication and I was told to try to eat a low fat diet, don't eat shrimp, lobster, etc. I went off the statins, tried this diet for several months and none of this helped....actually my cholesterol went higher....I was told it's hereditary, there's nothing you can do, and I should take the statin and that I would be on them indefinitely. Well, after reading the book "The China Study", there's a few paragraphs tucked in this great book mentioning that the major factor causing high cholesterol is eating any animal protein. The only meat I ate at the time was fish and chicken and small portions of it....and maybe beef a few times a year, if that. I have to say I was skeptical and figured what do I have to lose, so I went on a whole food plant based diet (vegan diet)as Dr. Campbell in the book suggests. I started that last November (same time I stopped taking the statins), and I had my cholesterol checked this past summer and was stunned at the result....
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Its a matter of life and death.
Considering the importance of health and the findings of Dr Campbell;i must say this is the most important book i have read in my lifetime. Read more
Published 17 hours ago by El Quijote Mexicano
5.0 out of 5 stars You will never look at food the same way again
Shocking! Changed the way I see food forever! Everyone needs to read this, learn from it and follow it. Our world would be a lot healthier.
Published 22 hours ago by Colette T. Tompkins
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible study, awesome book
I'm not finished yet but it's already so good that I never want to put it down. Great, reliable information throughout the entire book.
Published 1 day ago by Ashlee Stoeppler
4.0 out of 5 stars Important Book
This book and the Beating Cancer with Nutrition book were recommended to me when I was diagnosed with Lung Cancer. They are well documented and worth reading. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Forbud
5.0 out of 5 stars The China Study
Excellent evidence provided to support a low fat, plant based diet to prevent or minimize heart diseases, cancer diseases, blood diseases, kidney diseases, dementia diseases and... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Cathy Brown
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading in the schools
This book will turn your life around. It should be required reading for all students in our schools. Read more
Published 3 days ago by biscuit
5.0 out of 5 stars To the point shaking the western core
Being a hard core vegetarian in my family for generations, the part about dairy shook me up. Otherwise this was nothing for me to challenge in this book. I am glad Dr. Read more
Published 4 days ago by rpv
5.0 out of 5 stars The china study on diet impact on health
I really enjoyed reading it and recommend every human being should read it. It changed my eating habits. I already seen improvement in my health.
Published 4 days ago by Nomula
5.0 out of 5 stars You need to read this
I have worked for the medical and medical research communities. I am not a nurse or doctor, but admin. Read more
Published 5 days ago by Table4two
5.0 out of 5 stars Food and diet guide
this is a good read i wish all doctors would read to get people to change their diet instead of using more drugs
Published 7 days ago by Daniel Olthoff
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