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Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health. The #1 New York Times Bestseller Paperback – Illustrated, June 28, 2011
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For decades, that question has fascinated a small circle of impassioned doctors and researchers—and now, their life-changing research is making headlines in the hit documentary Forks Over Knives. Their answer? Eat a whole-foods, plant-based diet—it could save your life.
It may overturn most of the diet advice you’ve heard—but the experts behind Forks Over Knives aren’t afraid to make waves. In his book Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn explained that eating meat, dairy, and oils injures the lining of our blood vessels, causing heart disease, heart attack, or stroke. In The China Study, Dr. Colin Campbell revealed how cancer and other diseases skyrocket when eating meat and dairy is the norm—and plummet when a traditional plant-based diet persists. And more and more experts are adding their voices to the cause: There is nothing else you can do for your health that can match the benefits of a plant-based diet.
Now, as Forks Over Knives is introducing more people than ever before to the plant-based way to health, this accessible guide provides the information you need to adopt and maintain a plant-based diet. Features include:
- Insights from the luminaries behind the film—Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. John McDougall, The Engine 2 Diet author Rip Esselstyn, and many others
- Success stories from converts to plant-based eating—like San’Dera Prude, who no longer needs to medicate her diabetes, has lost weight, and feels great!
- The many benefits of a whole-foods, plant-based diet—for you, for animals and the environment, and for our future
- A helpful primer on crafting a healthy diet rich in unprocessed fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, including tips on transitioning and essential kitchen tools
- 125 recipes from 25 champions of plant-based dining—from Blueberry Oat Breakfast Muffins and Sunny Orange Yam Bisque to Garlic Rosemary Polenta and Raspberry-Pear Crisp—delicious, healthy, and for every meal, every day.
—Carolyn Scott-Hamilton, in VegNews
“[A]n invaluable reference for anyone who still doesn’t believe that the Standard American Diet (SAD) is in fact the cause for a majority of our personal, global and moral devastation. Highly recommended.”
—This Dish is Veg
About the Author
Gene Stone (genestone.com) is a former Peace Corps volunteer, journalist, and book, magazine, and newspaper editor, and is a New York Times bestselling author. He has written, co-written, or ghostwritten more than 45 books on a wide variety of subjects, but for the last decade he has concentrated on plant-based diets and their relationship to health, animal protection, and the environment. Among these books are Forks Over Knives, How Not to Die, Animalkind, The Engine 2 Diet, Living the Farm Sanctuary Life, Rescue Dogs, Mercy for Animals, and Eat for the Planet.
- Publisher : The Experiment; Illustrated edition (June 28, 2011)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 224 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1615190457
- ISBN-13 : 978-1615190454
- Item Weight : 13.1 ounces
- Dimensions : 6.25 x 0.5 x 8.56 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #14,123 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the authors
Reviewed in the United States on February 23, 2017
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It provides concise explanations of why a whole-foods, plant-based diet is healthiest for people, the planet, and the animals, and
It offers a wide range of amazing recipes to help people get started.
The editor pairs these tasks to perform one goal: to help people live healthier lives through their food choices.
The book does this in three parts: (i) why a plant-based diet is best for your health, the planet, and the animals (37 pages); (ii) basic facts on plant-based foods (19 pages), and (iii) recipes (133 pages). While the bulk of the book is for recipes, there is a lot of powerful information in the first two parts that has appeal for anyone from the newcomer to the most informed, with topics as diverse as the environmental impact of food choices to nutrition labels. Even after having read literally dozens of books on plant-based foods and having finished Campbell's eCornell course in plant-based nutrition, I became more informed after reading the first two parts. The third part is filled with tempting recipes from some of the top plant-based chefs who refuse to compromise on health to sell meals.
The writing style is, for lack of a better word, "comfortable". You can almost imagine yourself having a casual discussion with 11 experts on healthy eating, with insights that would surprise your general practitioner, but with language suitable for the layperson.
My only qualms with the book are with the image quality of the graphs and people, which are technically disappointing, although still discernable, and with the arrangement of the bios, which seems out of order with their contributions.
As a result of the dual tasks, some of the Amazon reviewers were negative. I've summarized them here, along with some counterpoints:
Claim: The educational part of the book was too concise and contained bios
If you are interested only in Dr. Esselstyn's work, try Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure . For more on Campbell's work, turn to The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted And the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss, And Long-term Health . For the impact of our food choices on the environment or animals, there are hundreds of books that describe the effects in chilling detail. This book is not the most comprehensive, authoritative guide on any one of those subjects, but it is a very readable and compelling guide on what is arguably the most important topic for most readers: healthy eating. And it holds something for every nutritionist I've ever met, as well as for the overweight Wal-Mart shopper whose cart is filled with chips and soda, or laboratory-manufactured foods from aisle 17. I have yet to find a book that does a better job of balancing the tasks of enlightening readers and facilitating changes in diet.
The book does offer bios on the people who are trying to help us live more healthy lives. At first, I thought that this was a bit too much of a stretch for an already ambitious book...if I read a book on yoga, I'm not necessarily interested in the backgrounds of the leading proponents of yoga. But here I think the bios are justified because they offer a much needed perspective. The bio on T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D., explains how he grew up on a dairy farm and was preparing to continue working with animal-based foods, how he discovered that animal protein was a problem rather than a solution to health woes, and then how certain factions in the food industry tried to smear him to stop him from sharing his findings. Dr. Neal Barnard found that the ribs on his cafeteria tray looked and smelled eerily similar to the ribs he had just examined from a human cadaver, which led him to think differently about food. Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn tells of how he saved cardiovascular patients who had been told to "go home and prepare for death". I know of dozens of people with cardiovascular problems and one person who was also told to give up hope, so this latter bio may serve as a wakeup call where all else has failed. Collectively, these bios show how the leaders in the field came to the same conclusions from different perspectives, in spite of the traditional food and health industry pressures and tactics.
Claim: The book offered nothing that couldn't be found on the Internet.
I've been a student of plant-based nutrition for 10 years and I've read everything I can on the topic, yet I found pieces here I'd never seen before: Bios that contain insights obviously drawn out from first-hand interviews with the subjects; success stories from people who chose to adopt this healthier approach to eating; a very concise and thoughtful summary which compares whole, plant-based foods to animal products (styled like black box warning labels for food), and some great recipes from leading chefs.
Claim: The book contained no bibliography and few footnotes.
This comment, especially when juxtaposed with the above comment, shows the difficulty in pairing disparate tasks: it's impossible to please everyone. If everything could be found on the Internet, why would someone need a bibliography and dozens of footnotes? Actually, there is a bibliography--called a "bookshelf" on page 199, as well as a list of online references on page 198. There are few footnotes, which will disappoint the purist, but this is a guide, not the definitive source on every topic covered.
Now, a comment on some of the "reviews": A review should summarize the content, offer a critical assessment (e.g., Was it noteworthy? Understandable? Persuasive?), and an argument as to why prospective readers might or might not enjoy the book. Some of the comments for this book are simply mean-spirited attacks on a book that aims to inform, persuade and help those who want to live longer, healthier lives in making better food choices--all for the low price of $6.40, or less than one-tenth the cost of a doctor's visit, where the topic of whole, plant-based foods will likely never come up. Such attacks are to be expected when someone challenges long-held, but unjustifiable beliefs with extensive clinical and epidemiological evidence. Still, more thoughtful reviews would benefit Amazon customers.
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on May 28, 2020