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Perfect Health Diet: Regain Health and Lose Weight by Eating the Way You Were Meant to Eat

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Suffering from chronic illness and unable to get satisfactory results from doctors, husband and wife scientists Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet took an intensely personal interest in health and nutrition. They embarked on five years of rigorous research. What they found changed their lives— and the lives of thousands of their readers. In Perfect Health Diet, the Jaminets expla Suffering from chronic illness and unable to get satisfactory results from doctors, husband and wife scientists Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet took an intensely personal interest in health and nutrition. They embarked on five years of rigorous research. What they found changed their lives— and the lives of thousands of their readers. In Perfect Health Diet, the Jaminets explain in layman's terms how anyone can regain health and lose weight by optimizing nutrition, detoxifying the diet, and supporting healthy immune function. They show how toxic, nutrient-poor diets sabotage health, and how on a healthy diet, diseases often spontaneously resolve. Perfect Health Diet tells you exactly how to optimize health and make weight loss effortless with a clear, balanced, and scientifically proven plan to change the way you eat—and feel—forever!


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Suffering from chronic illness and unable to get satisfactory results from doctors, husband and wife scientists Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet took an intensely personal interest in health and nutrition. They embarked on five years of rigorous research. What they found changed their lives— and the lives of thousands of their readers. In Perfect Health Diet, the Jaminets expla Suffering from chronic illness and unable to get satisfactory results from doctors, husband and wife scientists Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet took an intensely personal interest in health and nutrition. They embarked on five years of rigorous research. What they found changed their lives— and the lives of thousands of their readers. In Perfect Health Diet, the Jaminets explain in layman's terms how anyone can regain health and lose weight by optimizing nutrition, detoxifying the diet, and supporting healthy immune function. They show how toxic, nutrient-poor diets sabotage health, and how on a healthy diet, diseases often spontaneously resolve. Perfect Health Diet tells you exactly how to optimize health and make weight loss effortless with a clear, balanced, and scientifically proven plan to change the way you eat—and feel—forever!

30 review for Perfect Health Diet: Regain Health and Lose Weight by Eating the Way You Were Meant to Eat

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jodi

    Don't let the somewhat corny title of this book put you off. This book is a wonderful and very simple introduction to real healthy eating for anyone currently eating a average-quality diet. Great things about this book: 1. For those that just want the facts super-fast this book gives you a one page summary of the eating plan within the first 6 pages of the book. The book also contains lots of extra information backing up their conclusions as well, for those that want it. 2. This book is about eatin Don't let the somewhat corny title of this book put you off. This book is a wonderful and very simple introduction to real healthy eating for anyone currently eating a average-quality diet. Great things about this book: 1. For those that just want the facts super-fast this book gives you a one page summary of the eating plan within the first 6 pages of the book. The book also contains lots of extra information backing up their conclusions as well, for those that want it. 2. This book is about eating healthily and how to improve your health and reduce your risk of getting ill in the future with diet - rather than just about mere weight loss - which is so refreshing. Slow weight normalisation is a side effect of following this diet for sure, but it is not the primary focus. 3. The research for the book began when the authors were each working to improve their own health issues through diet. The authors are genuinely nice people that are passionate about helping others get the same results they have and the subject of a healthy diet and this comes through clearly on every page of this book. 4. The diet the authors recommend is made up of 20% carbs, 65% fat and 15% protein. So it is a low/moderate carb, high fat and moderate protein diet by calories, and 35% animal foods and 65% plant foods by weight. This is very similar to a traditional Pacific Islander diet, the authors explain. The sections explaining the facts of fats, carbs and protein are of a very high quality and seem to summarise the work of all the best books I have read on nutrition and diet lately. The problems with a high carb diet are clearly spelled out as are the benefits of a high fat diet. 5. The book also recommends avoiding all grains (other than rice), legumes, dry lean meats, vegetable oils and pasteurised dairy products and recommends eating unlimited non-starchy vegetables (750 grams a day or more or 1.5 pounds), 200 - 450 grams or so (0.5 to 1 pound) of fatty meat/seafood/eggs, about 4 teaspoons of healthy fats (ghee, lard and coconut oil and a bit of olive oil), and snacking on nuts, cheese and fruit. The authors warn that while fibre can be helpful, for some people too much fibre can be a real problem. 6. Where this book differs from many others in the same (reduced-carb and traditional foods) vein is that it explains that, yes, while your body can make the glucose it needs from protein when you eat a low carb diet, this process taxes the body unnecessarily and the conversion may be inefficient. This is especially true for those that are ill, the authors explain. Despite my making a bit of a hobby of reading a large amount of very good books on healthy eating and diet in recent years, no other book had made these same points. So having this explained so well finally was wonderful and it explained a lot! (I did really well on a 20 grams of carbohydrate a day diet for 6 - 9 months or so. I felt well and had no more hypoglycemia and lost a lot of weight. But after that 6 months was up my body seemed to really struggle with it, perhaps due to the fact I have severe metabolic, endocrine, and cardiac problems. (I'm housebound and 95% bedbound and very disabled.) When I finally went back up to 50 - 75 grams of carbs a day (years later) I felt so much better, and finally was able to start losing some of the weight that had crept back on on my super-low carb regime. It was also a much more pleasant way to eat; being able to have 5 cups of veggies a day and a bit of fruit! I feel like staying on this super-low carb diet for so long delayed my health from beginning to improve as well, as it made my body work harder than it had to on food assimilation which of course leaves less metabolic energy and bodily resources left over for the work of healing.) The book explains that eating very low carb and making your body convert proteins to carbs puts strain on the liver and uses up bodily resources, generates ammonia as a toxic by-product, puts a person at risk of glucose deprivation if the are ill or lacking in certain nutrients and makes nutrient deficiencies more likely due to lower fruit and vegetable intake. Very low carbohydrate intake can also cause problems with vitamin C utilisation that may even lead to scurvy, as vitamin C is stimulated by insulin. For these reasons they recommend eating an amount of carbs daily which is very close to how much the body actually needs; 200 - 400 carb calories daily (or roughly 50 - 100 grams of carbs daily). I agree with the authors that healthy people will likely have few problems converting one macronutrients to another (such as protein to carbs, and carbs to fat) but for those of us that are ill it is best to save your body the work and to eat foods in the appropriate macro-nutrient percentages to start with. That just seems to make so much sense! Things about the book I am not sure about, to some entent: 1. I'm not convinced that all of us can handle the foods the authors describe as "safe starches" and in those amounts. For me eating rice with meals gives me so much carbohydrate it leaves me feeling spacey, hungry and unsatisfied. I am also unconvinced that eating rice is better for you than eating the same amount of carbs in vegetable form, as the authors even say themselves in the book that rice is low in nutrients compared to other foods, calorie for calorie. There is no real nutrition in it, and so for me no reason to eat it - and lots of reasons not to. I found it even more surprising that not only did the authors recommend eating rice often, but they even extended this to processed foods like rice crackers and rice noodles. Foods many of us with an interest in healthy eating and nutrient-dense eating just wouldn't want to eat at all. I recommend trying the authors' "safe starches" idea and seeing if it works for you, but being aware that for some of us these foods may be best avoided or minimised and eating LOTS of non-starchy veggies and 2-3 serves of fruit may work better for you. 2. Like many others I also cannot tolerate any of the dairy products the author recommends and also have egg allergy issues. I feel these issues could have been discussed a bit more in the book, as they are so so common. I also think fermented foods and drinks could have been emphasised more and disagree with the authors' assertions that nuts and seeds need only be soeaked if you eat a lot of them. For those of us with lots of gut and digestion problems, soaking all nuts and seeds can make a wonderful difference that is really noticeable. (I wish so much I had learned about the importance of soaking nuts and eating fermented foods sooner!) 3. While this book provides a great summary of many of many of the best books on nutrition, the same cannot be said of the information given on supplements. This information was very patchy, incomplete and just plain wrong in many instances and it does not at all tally with the information given by those that are the genuine experts in this field. The information seems to come from strange sources, and not from genuine experts in the field. The RDAs are quoted a lot and discussed as if they were important and trustworthy and no names of orthomolecular experts or similar are really mentioned. Such an average quality and incomplete guide may be okay for healthy people but for anyone battling serious health issues I would urge them to read far more deeply on this topic than this book allows and to ignore much of the information given in this book. Despite what the authors of this book claim, those of us with serious health issues absolutely need intelligent and often intensive and wide-ranging supplementation along with a healthy diet before we can start to regain our health. We need as much of each nutrient as we actually need, and not just how much the RDA has been arbitrarily set at. Supplement plans must be individualised, as much as possible. We also need to take the right balance of nutrients, and not lots of one thing and none of another related thing. This has absolutely been my experience and holds true for vast numbers of other patients. This sort of diet change is always the first step in improcving health however, and for some lucky people it may be enough. For others it is just the first essential step of many others! (See: Detoxify or Die, Orthomolecular Medicine for Everyone: Megavitamin Therapeutics for Families and Physicians, Primal Body, Primal Mind: Beyond the Paleo Diet for Total Health and a Longer Life and Dr. Atkins' Vita-Nutrient Solution: Nature's Answer to Drugs and others, for more information on this topic.) 4. The book could have done with having wider margins and more white space on the page, as well as fewer black and white images of foods (many of which looked awful or were hard to make out). Overall the book was very well put together and well edited, however. Even if you have read the wonderful books by Taubes, Fallon and Enig, Gedgaudes, Cordain, Price, Sisson, Schwartzbein, Shanahan, Eades etc. this book is still worth reading. I rate this as a 5 star book for healthy people who want to learn to eat better, but not quite a 5 star book when it comes to being a complete guide for those battling serious illnesses. It isn't a complete guide to health for ill people, just a very solid starting point on diet. So that is why I give the book 4 stars overall. Jodi Bassett, The Hummingbirds' Foundation for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ggreg Anderson

    Great paleo diet. I’ve been low carb for years - this is the first book to convince me to put some carbs back in my diet with solid and methodical scientific reasoning and footnotes. Highly recommend to any who are Paleo-inclined.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ricardo

    First, I couldn't finish it, and I ended up browsing and skimming. If you feel that doesn't qualify me to review it, please stop reading now. The science in this book is questionable, and its conclusions are complete leaps. For example the assertion is made we can use starvation to examine what should make up a healthy diet. Proportions are given for a human body's constituent nutrients, and the conclusion is reached this must be pretty close to a healthy diet. I saw no mention of the, what I bel First, I couldn't finish it, and I ended up browsing and skimming. If you feel that doesn't qualify me to review it, please stop reading now. The science in this book is questionable, and its conclusions are complete leaps. For example the assertion is made we can use starvation to examine what should make up a healthy diet. Proportions are given for a human body's constituent nutrients, and the conclusion is reached this must be pretty close to a healthy diet. I saw no mention of the, what I believe is established, fact that the body preferentially canabalizes muscle and how that might influence the hypothesis. At one point the China Study is referenced to bolster the anti-gluten argument. I believe the China Studay was heavily critical of cholestoral (though I may be mistaken), but that's just completely ignored. These are just examples and there are many more. Though to be fair, I refused to look at the notes, which are on the authors' website. Maybe all of the science is explained there. Every few pages the reader is treated to "Reader Reports". This is nothing more than anecdotal evidence. So, if you love testimonials, you'll love these. And, this was the gem that finally had me put the book down: "The difference between eating rice and wheat could account for most of the IQ difference between Asians and Americans!" To be clear, I am not saying the diet presented is bad or unhealthy. I'm saying if it is healthy, the material failed to convince me. If you, like me, were looking for real science, look elsewhere. Even accounting for the intended audience, I'm not sure any of the material in here is even close to being printable in any scientific journal. If instead you're looking for another diet to try or you enjoy confirmation bias for a "primal"-type diet, maybe you'll enjoy this.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Tamahome

    This is my current thing. Yes, you do need some starches. Very technical. The ebook sample is 50 pages. I'm only following it half-assedly. Stomach lining for dinner anyone? I'm on the fence about beans, but wheat was gone already. For whatever your food plan, if you're not feeling good, you're doing it wrong. I don't know if I can fast from 8pm to noon. I have enough trouble not eating between the 8 hours of attempted sleep. Eww! Scientists have begun to carefully analyze the "human microbiome" a This is my current thing. Yes, you do need some starches. Very technical. The ebook sample is 50 pages. I'm only following it half-assedly. Stomach lining for dinner anyone? I'm on the fence about beans, but wheat was gone already. For whatever your food plan, if you're not feeling good, you're doing it wrong. I don't know if I can fast from 8pm to noon. I have enough trouble not eating between the 8 hours of attempted sleep. Eww! Scientists have begun to carefully analyze the "human microbiome" and have established that at any one time, each person carries in the gut alone 100 trillion bacteria weighing 2 to 3 pounds from over a thousand species. Podcast interview: http://www.thelivinlowcarbshow.com/sh... E-Z food chart: http://perfecthealthdiet.com/?page_id=8 UPDATE: There's a new edition that comes out on 12/11/12 that's 50% bigger and will be available in stores. But I asked at the bookstore today and managed to get a copy. :) The new section on circadian rhythms is very interesting. The pathogen section is scary (you don't want to enter a room crowded with people). There's a new chapter on food reward. I would be very careful about supplements over the 100% rda, especially if you know you have high ferritin (iron) levels. There's a variety of personal experiences with nutrition and different chronic infections.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alicia Pyne

    My friend has been telling me to read this book for over a year and I finally had time to read it. I was very skeptical because so many books about how to eat are fad diets or give a lot of bad advice and incorrect information. I will start by saying I cant say this book helps in all the ways it says, and I am not as smart as the scientists who published the data or wrote the book. That being said, this book is VERY well researched (Over 5 years) and addresses a lot of areas involved in nutritio My friend has been telling me to read this book for over a year and I finally had time to read it. I was very skeptical because so many books about how to eat are fad diets or give a lot of bad advice and incorrect information. I will start by saying I cant say this book helps in all the ways it says, and I am not as smart as the scientists who published the data or wrote the book. That being said, this book is VERY well researched (Over 5 years) and addresses a lot of areas involved in nutrition that I have not previously considered (toxic enzymes and hormones produced by plants that can effect humans). I think the conclusions made by the authors make sense, and I would recommend all the people I care about to read this book and adopt this diet/approach to eating. Though there are a few things I disagree with, I think this is the best health/nutrition/diet book written so far (at least that I have read).

  6. 4 out of 5

    Aneliya Petrunova

    Despite the rather tacky title, Perfect Health Diet by Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet is quite worth your while, especially if you're interested in healthy eating and even more so is you're already familiar with the low carb and paleo concepts. The eating plan (PHD) outlined in the book is a modification of the paleo diet which introduces the concept of "safe starches" and emphasizes rather heavily the significance of the right amount of carbohydrates for good health. The Jaminets define PHD as a l Despite the rather tacky title, Perfect Health Diet by Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet is quite worth your while, especially if you're interested in healthy eating and even more so is you're already familiar with the low carb and paleo concepts. The eating plan (PHD) outlined in the book is a modification of the paleo diet which introduces the concept of "safe starches" and emphasizes rather heavily the significance of the right amount of carbohydrates for good health. The Jaminets define PHD as a low carb/high fat plan, because the macronutrients still work out this way (calorie-wise). But you get to eat potatoes and white rice (and quite substantial portions of them), if you choose to follow PHD. PHD excludes pretty much all the foods regular paleo does - grains (except for white rice) and most legumes, sugar, omega 6-rich vegetable oils. It also emphasizes fish, liver, eggs and ruminant meat - no surprises there. But one important point the Jaminets make is that gluconeogenesis (the way lowcarbers and many paleo folks synthesize glucose from aminoacids and fat) can be rather taxing on the body and over time can lead to health problems in some people (as many have reported on low carb and paleo forums). The Jaminets define what they call a natural carbohydrate intake which is around 150 grams/day - this should come from food and the glucose should not have to be synthesized via gluconeogenesis. Less than that can be and is problematic for many, and more than that becomes toxic. Of course, everything they say is backed up by science. The Jaminets also offer useful tips on how to consume safe starches in order to minimize their glycemic impact. For people with neurological illnesses who would benefit from a ketogenic diet the book offers a ketogenic version of PHD as well. The Jaminets also discuss and recommend fasting and some supplements, as well as ways to optimize circadian rhythms. They are also supporters of low and moderate intensity physical activity. What I found specifically helpful are the numerous readers' reports quoted throughout the book - these are stories of people who have adopted the Perfect Health Diet, many of them after following a low carb or paleo regimen for a while, but not feeling as well as they expected to. Not everyone follows the Jaminets' advice on safe starches 100% - some people only add 50 (and not 150) grams of safe starches to their diets, but still experience remarkable health benefits. PHD certainly lends itself to individual interpretations. The book provides some handy recipes too. All in all, I think the book is well written and can be a good resource, if you've been following a (very) low carb or paleo diet for a while and are not achieving the results you want (or if you did quite well for a while, but then your health started deteriorating). And if you are currently eating the Standard American (or Western) Diet, PHD is definitely the way to go, if you want to improve your eating habits and your health. Caution is advised for diabetics, but there are both type 1s and type 2s who are doing good on PHD, so your mileage may vary.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jonmarc Grodi

    Everyone should read this book. The Jaminets have outdone themselves bringing together anthropological and historical data, evolutionary biology, mammalian biology, the nutritional content of breast-milk, and other sources of data to form a strong foundational blueprint for a what the default human diet looks like. They then apply this hermeneutic to every aspect of the human diet - macronutrients, micronutrients, toxins, diet strategies for specific health issues, etc - combining copious referen Everyone should read this book. The Jaminets have outdone themselves bringing together anthropological and historical data, evolutionary biology, mammalian biology, the nutritional content of breast-milk, and other sources of data to form a strong foundational blueprint for a what the default human diet looks like. They then apply this hermeneutic to every aspect of the human diet - macronutrients, micronutrients, toxins, diet strategies for specific health issues, etc - combining copious references to scientific literature with clear logical thinking. Since adopting this diet, my wife and I have experienced effortless weight loss and maintenance, improvement or elimination of a variety of health issues (energy levels, heartburn, clear skin, warts, muscle tone, digestion, and more), and most importantly have found a diet that is delicious, easy, satisfying, and, well, not a diet at all - just the way we were meant to eat.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David Ranney

    A thorough and impeccably-conceived survey of the anatomical and biological purpose of nutrient consumption from an evolutionary perspective. Written with clarity and no wasted words, Perfect Health Diet weeds through a hundred years of industry misinformation to arrive at these basic food tenets: what your body expects, what your body needs (and doesn't need), and how to get it. It's not about losing weight, it's about a sustainable paradigm shift that will allow the overworked body to reach it A thorough and impeccably-conceived survey of the anatomical and biological purpose of nutrient consumption from an evolutionary perspective. Written with clarity and no wasted words, Perfect Health Diet weeds through a hundred years of industry misinformation to arrive at these basic food tenets: what your body expects, what your body needs (and doesn't need), and how to get it. It's not about losing weight, it's about a sustainable paradigm shift that will allow the overworked body to reach its optimal state. Can't recommend enough. Free universal health care if you have a library card.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Polina

    I eventually stopped reading it. I think I am stuck in the pales style low carb mindset an their suggestion to eat 4 fistfuls of starches daily after providing all the preliminary research showing how our ancestors basically lived low carb and how we are not even designed to digest carbs - somehow they have lost me there. To continue reading while having to disagree and modify their prescribed diet just felt like a waste of time so I stopped half way. They do present a ketogenic version of their I eventually stopped reading it. I think I am stuck in the pales style low carb mindset an their suggestion to eat 4 fistfuls of starches daily after providing all the preliminary research showing how our ancestors basically lived low carb and how we are not even designed to digest carbs - somehow they have lost me there. To continue reading while having to disagree and modify their prescribed diet just felt like a waste of time so I stopped half way. They do present a ketogenic version of their diet and the research in the first part of the book was an enjoyable and useful read.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Melanie

    This is the nutrition book for smart, intelligent folks who understand data. Not condescending or too folksy in tone as many "diet books" can be. Well written and comprehensive with some conclusive thinking on sticky issue - role of 'ketogenic' diets, low carb or moderate carb?, and which supplements are actually healthy. Frankly their discussion on safe carbs is really quite helpful. This book will definitely serve as a future resource. This is the nutrition book for smart, intelligent folks who understand data. Not condescending or too folksy in tone as many "diet books" can be. Well written and comprehensive with some conclusive thinking on sticky issue - role of 'ketogenic' diets, low carb or moderate carb?, and which supplements are actually healthy. Frankly their discussion on safe carbs is really quite helpful. This book will definitely serve as a future resource.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ali Pasha

    Please read this book. You owe it to yourself. Most nutrition books do a poor job of linking to research and shy away from the science. This does the opposite and comes up with a startlingly different conclusion. It is largely the reason why I've managed to lose 30 lbs. Fat is not as bad as you think it is. Please read this book. You owe it to yourself. Most nutrition books do a poor job of linking to research and shy away from the science. This does the opposite and comes up with a startlingly different conclusion. It is largely the reason why I've managed to lose 30 lbs. Fat is not as bad as you think it is.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Matt Hempey

    I leave reviews exceedingly rarely. I am trying to change that habit, and what better place to start than with my all-time-favorite book on nutrition. Paul Jaminet has the most rational approach to nutrition I have ever seen. He is not afraid of complexity, which unfortunately is not a characteristic that sells many books or starts diet crazes. But in a world of knee-jerk headlines about the latest correlation-sans-cause diet study ("Diet Coke causes obesity!"), Paul's framework for nutrition is I leave reviews exceedingly rarely. I am trying to change that habit, and what better place to start than with my all-time-favorite book on nutrition. Paul Jaminet has the most rational approach to nutrition I have ever seen. He is not afraid of complexity, which unfortunately is not a characteristic that sells many books or starts diet crazes. But in a world of knee-jerk headlines about the latest correlation-sans-cause diet study ("Diet Coke causes obesity!"), Paul's framework for nutrition is whole food nutrition for the mind. In order to discern a diet for "perfect health," Paul looks at the problem with sound logic and reasoning: 1. Everything you eat is essentially a collection of different nutrients (good) and toxins (bad). 3. For every nutrient you eat, there is an optimal range, there is too little, and there is too much. 2. Your goal is to eat the right amount of each kind of nutrient, and minimize the toxins. Using this framework as a baseline, Paul establishes the optimal range for each nutrient, and subsequently, the foods that provide it. He does this by looking at both empirical evidence as well as the biological mechanisms at play. This is crucial. Far too often diet information is lacking one or the other--theory without facts, or facts without theory--and both lead to misinformation. Finally, Paul does not rely on any one single source but instead a preponderance of evidence. Paul's book is for the layperson who is serious about understanding nutrition and is willing to invest time to do so. It's a serious book on a serious subject for serious people who want to be seriously healthy.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    Okay. This is going to be a really obnoxious review, but I have to go there to give the Jaminets their due. I have an unnatural obsession with avoiding my imminent demise to the point that somewhere along the way I convinced myself that if I read enough about health, I'd live forever. Still holding out hope for this strategy; it's one of several I'm currently trying. In the meantime, I have read more than I care to admit about diet, and I read much of the health research that is released every d Okay. This is going to be a really obnoxious review, but I have to go there to give the Jaminets their due. I have an unnatural obsession with avoiding my imminent demise to the point that somewhere along the way I convinced myself that if I read enough about health, I'd live forever. Still holding out hope for this strategy; it's one of several I'm currently trying. In the meantime, I have read more than I care to admit about diet, and I read much of the health research that is released every day on PubMed. Recently, it's been difficult to find information in health books that I haven't read somewhere else, and when people ask me to recommend one book on health, I have never been able to think of one that was thorough enough (or correct enough...see, obnoxious) to suggest. This book solves these problems. This book is the only book on diet that you will never need. It is thorough, well-researched (with footnotes), well-organized, and fairly concise, despite its 420-page length. It has lots of old information and lots of new information on diet, supplements, and disease and includes food and menu suggestions. And it's correct. Hooray!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Gab D'Or

    The title is misleading. Although it sounds like a lose weight diet book, it really is more of a general health book which dissects in a very structured way all the different aspects of nutrition. It is comparable to bulletproof diet, without all the marketing bias of Dave Asprey trying to sell his own products. The approach is very methodical and most statements are back by reliable studies. The author is very transparent and makes it very clear when a given statement is only an hypothesis, or The title is misleading. Although it sounds like a lose weight diet book, it really is more of a general health book which dissects in a very structured way all the different aspects of nutrition. It is comparable to bulletproof diet, without all the marketing bias of Dave Asprey trying to sell his own products. The approach is very methodical and most statements are back by reliable studies. The author is very transparent and makes it very clear when a given statement is only an hypothesis, or is not backed by a sufficient amount of data. The book is very technical, which makes it a though read. Would not recommend this buy it as an audiobook. You want the paper copy to bookmark it and take side notes.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Isaac

    I picked this book because I wanted to better understand how the body uses different types of food, which it did, but it also convinced me to try giving up wheat and vegetable oils and to start eating more fish and fat. I'd highly recommend this book to anyone looking to eat better. I picked this book because I wanted to better understand how the body uses different types of food, which it did, but it also convinced me to try giving up wheat and vegetable oils and to start eating more fish and fat. I'd highly recommend this book to anyone looking to eat better.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Dane

    As a proponent of the Paleo lifestyle, this book was a natural draw for me. I enjoyed their scientific explanations, and especially appreciated their treatment of supplements. I'm excited to add in the "safe starches" and see how I feel. Overall, I enjoyed the book very much! As a proponent of the Paleo lifestyle, this book was a natural draw for me. I enjoyed their scientific explanations, and especially appreciated their treatment of supplements. I'm excited to add in the "safe starches" and see how I feel. Overall, I enjoyed the book very much!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Rob

    Good rationality but I'm still not ready for "safe starches" Good rationality but I'm still not ready for "safe starches"

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jeff

    Essential reading for knowing what to put in your body. Best book I've ever read on diet. Essential reading for knowing what to put in your body. Best book I've ever read on diet.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Roy

    In his fantastic book In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto, food writer Michael Pollan decried what he called "nutritionism"; that is to say, the overcomplication of healthy eating based on the analysis of micronutrients. Pollan argued that our understanding of nutrition remains imperfect, as demonstrated by the many mistakes we made along the way to get to our current understanding of a healthy diet, and thus, he argues, we might still be making a mistake now simply by looking at food at it In his fantastic book In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto, food writer Michael Pollan decried what he called "nutritionism"; that is to say, the overcomplication of healthy eating based on the analysis of micronutrients. Pollan argued that our understanding of nutrition remains imperfect, as demonstrated by the many mistakes we made along the way to get to our current understanding of a healthy diet, and thus, he argues, we might still be making a mistake now simply by looking at food at its granular elements. To sum up this wisdom, Pollan later made up his own "Food Rules": Eat food. Mostly plants. Not too much. I find it ironic, then, that the Jaminets, in writing about the most extensively micromanaged diet I've ever seen, quoted this rule verbatim as a validation of their approach. In the case of the Perfect Health Diet, though, the term "food" (which Pollan used to describe simple, unprocessed, whole food) requires 200 pages of cherry-picked studies and an in-depth understanding of micronutrients. Look. The stuff here isn't awful by any means. The book certainly contains a LOT of health information, and a lot of it makes sense and jives with what I've read elsewhere. But it doesn't remove the fact that this is a very complex diet with a lot of moving parts. For instance, you should eat organ meat OR dark chocolate once a week, fish twice a week, tomatoes on many occasions, potatoes but only if you boil them or cook them slow and put vinegar and fat on them, three eggs five days a week, fermented vegetables... the list goes on and on. It might sound like it's pretty flexible, but that's before you factor in its dozens of small but exacting requirements. The idea of selectively interpreting Pollan's food rules is another clue to the problem with this book. Namely, for all the scientific studies the book quotes, I highly suspect it's cherry-picking whatever reinforces its largely Paleo worldview. I was surprised to see it cites the China Study, for instance, as a validation of its anti-gluten stance, while totally ignoring all the pro-vegetarian arguments said study makes. This cherry-picking isn't exclusive to the Perfect Health Diet, mind you; pretty much any modern health book does it, whether it's to justify a pro-meat stance (Paleo, for instance), decry the evils ofo wheat, or support an vegan argument. You pick the studies that confirm your bias, while ignoring the rest of the body of scientific literature. Meanwhile, Pollan's argument that we should strive to eat a natural diet without sweating the small stuff goes unheeded. Which is why I'm hesitant to recommend this book. For instance, it promotes saturated fats such as beef tallow and butter, while placing olive oil on a lower tier solely based on its higher omega-6 fatty acid content. The arguments for a rebalancing of omega-6 fatty acids is compelling, but it REALLY sounds like they're focusing to the extreme on a single element and forgetting all other issues at stake here. Again, this is an issue I've seen over and again with pop nutrition books. In this regard, the Jaminets' book is actually pretty well-sourced. But issues of tunnel vision on certain issues and what I can only assume is a massive bias in favor of their own approach makes it hard to recommend on the face of it.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    It follows the same foundation as The Paleo Solution: The Original Human Diet, but it provides more scientific evidence and statistics. The book aims at creating the perfect diet that helps us to obtain every nutrient into its peak health range. It is defined by a single principle: Eat so as to gain all possible benefits and no toxicity from food. Deliver a minimum of toxins and no excess of nutrients that might feed pathogens or promote cancer or obesity. It goes into depth about the 3 major mac It follows the same foundation as The Paleo Solution: The Original Human Diet, but it provides more scientific evidence and statistics. The book aims at creating the perfect diet that helps us to obtain every nutrient into its peak health range. It is defined by a single principle: Eat so as to gain all possible benefits and no toxicity from food. Deliver a minimum of toxins and no excess of nutrients that might feed pathogens or promote cancer or obesity. It goes into depth about the 3 major macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. What are they needed for and how or body utilizes them. What happens when there is a deficient or an excess of them in our body. It is really interesting and I learned a lot. After the macronutrients, they also talk about important micronutrients like vitamin A, D, K, magnesium, selenium, iodine, zinc, etc. They emphasize a lot on getting our nutrients from whole foods and not supplements, unless necessary. By the way, the key to strong bone health is not calcium supplements (hell no... they instead can promote atherosclerosis and kidney stones). It’s actually the synergy of vitamin A (bone remodeling), vitamin D (bone mineralization), vitamin K2 (activation of proteins controlling mineralization of bone and preventing calcification of arteries), and magnesium (structural role in bone health). They are all important for strong bone health. Excess of any of these vitamins can be detrimental to bone health, but with adequate amounts of each vitamins, they prevent each other from becoming too toxic. Vitamin K2 prevents vitamin D toxicity. Vitamin A can be become toxic, if there is a vitamin D deficiency and vice versa. Vitamin D function depends on magnesium. A deficiency of magnesium and an excess of vitamin D can induce rickets in people. Also, the true culprit to osteoporosis are deficiencies in vitamin D, vitamin K2, and magnesium. Fascinating, no? Like I said... G.O.O.D. book.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sean Spang

    Overall good advice but a few head scratching theories presented by the authors leave me skeptical about the 'science' inherent in this book. First the authors speculate that biggest football players, linemen, die at the youngest age of all football players because they consume the greatest amount of protein. (this is the reason why they are the biggest). Of course the linemen are also facing off against other similar sized linemen and smashing their heads into each other all game long, at a rat Overall good advice but a few head scratching theories presented by the authors leave me skeptical about the 'science' inherent in this book. First the authors speculate that biggest football players, linemen, die at the youngest age of all football players because they consume the greatest amount of protein. (this is the reason why they are the biggest). Of course the linemen are also facing off against other similar sized linemen and smashing their heads into each other all game long, at a rate higher than any other position. It's almost certainly for this reason (concussions/head trauma) that there exists the disparity in age of death between linemen and other positions. Secondly they have a just ridiculous theory that the increasing consumption of Omega 6 oils are what is driving/contributing to higher rates of violent crime. I say ridiculous because they don't even bother to mention other confounding variables that could explain at least part of the violence like gun control policy, poverty, etc. More importantly, the graph they present as 'evidence' of this theory does not show the correlation they suggest it does. Nearly every country has almost no change in violence as Omega 6 consumption increases and only the US has values that could be linear in nature. However, there are only 5 data points for the USA so it's hard to say if this is a hard and fast relationship or just noise. These two 'theories' are so unfounded that they make wonder if the rest of the citations are cherry picked to support their view and if the scientific consensus is on their side or just one study. I am probably being overly harsh because the general advice is good - eat whole, unprocessed foods. Avoid sugar and grains. A good starting point - just consider some of the advice with a grain of salt.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Nick Vanderwal

    The subject of this book is one we should all be introduced to in our schools be they public or private. The authors do an excellent job of relating the results of their investigation to us. I stumbled into this subject when, at age 72, I decided to challenge my primary care doctor's prescription for taking and then increasing my dosage for statin drugs. Peddling pharmaceuticals seems to be what most of them are best at. This is the fourth book I have read concerning these matters. The others ar The subject of this book is one we should all be introduced to in our schools be they public or private. The authors do an excellent job of relating the results of their investigation to us. I stumbled into this subject when, at age 72, I decided to challenge my primary care doctor's prescription for taking and then increasing my dosage for statin drugs. Peddling pharmaceuticals seems to be what most of them are best at. This is the fourth book I have read concerning these matters. The others are The Big Fat Surprise by Nina Teicholz, Grain Brain by Dr. David Perlmutter, No Grain, No Pain, by Dr Peter Osborn. I recommend them all to someone willing to take responsibility for their own well-being. This book, in particular, gives the reader a complete and comfortable plan for establishing and maintaining a healthy life. At 72 I am presently at a weight where I was in my 20's. I eat delicious foods in quantities I want and have wine with dinner. My lab numbers, which were never bad to start with are now even better! I have no statin related dizziness, pain, or brain fog! All I can add to that is wow! And thank you Paul and Shou-Ching! I am a follower and admirer and look forward to your (and my) continued success!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    After nearly a month on the Wahls protocol, I was having a recurrence of the same problems I had before starting; I started adding back in non-gluten starches, trying to up my caloric intake. Coincidentally, a few days after that, I started this book, which pretty much mirrors what I was already doing. It has been about a week on this eating plan, and I'm doing better. I need to find a way to incorporate more healthy fats, and I'd like it if my body could tolerate more vegetable variety, but I'm After nearly a month on the Wahls protocol, I was having a recurrence of the same problems I had before starting; I started adding back in non-gluten starches, trying to up my caloric intake. Coincidentally, a few days after that, I started this book, which pretty much mirrors what I was already doing. It has been about a week on this eating plan, and I'm doing better. I need to find a way to incorporate more healthy fats, and I'd like it if my body could tolerate more vegetable variety, but I'm doing ok. To be honest, I skimmed quite a bit of this. This is a thick book with a ton of very technical information. It wouldn't be out of reach of someone with basic undergraduate-level science education who was emotionally invested, paying attention, and taking notes. The writing seemed comfortable and appropriate: not too jokey or hokey, but believable and reliable.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jeff

    I generally think that much of nutritional science is a scam, and the title of this book seems to indicate it'd be more of the same, but I was more than pleasantly surprised with it. It did an amazing job of taking a very complex topic and breaking it down in a way that was both detailed and approachable. It combines evolutionary thinking with the results from modern scientific experiments to share a perspective on how to eat healthily. The only downside is that at times, it makes some leaps fro I generally think that much of nutritional science is a scam, and the title of this book seems to indicate it'd be more of the same, but I was more than pleasantly surprised with it. It did an amazing job of taking a very complex topic and breaking it down in a way that was both detailed and approachable. It combines evolutionary thinking with the results from modern scientific experiments to share a perspective on how to eat healthily. The only downside is that at times, it makes some leaps from what the experiments said to what the recommendation is. It's not all over the book, but it's the only downside to this one that I can think of. Definitely worth a read if you're interested in the science behind food.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Stern

    A fantastic book that brings together the widsom of Paleo, keto, and other diet plans while also discussing their shortcomings. I have read dozens of books on diet and nutrition and for me, this was really the one that tied everything together. It is well-written, extremely well researched, and filled with anecdotes and testimonials that motivated me to try it out. It has improved issues with muscle soreness, poor sleep and menstrual cramps for me, and I have only been following the recommendati A fantastic book that brings together the widsom of Paleo, keto, and other diet plans while also discussing their shortcomings. I have read dozens of books on diet and nutrition and for me, this was really the one that tied everything together. It is well-written, extremely well researched, and filled with anecdotes and testimonials that motivated me to try it out. It has improved issues with muscle soreness, poor sleep and menstrual cramps for me, and I have only been following the recommendations for a few months. This book also strikes a good balance between eating healthy and enjoying yourself - it removes certain foods but it is not very restrictive. Eating this way is still delicious, and unlike keto, it will not remove your ability to eat in most restaurants.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Gary Watts

    An excellent diet and health book. It's hard to know whether all of it is correct as I think there are still so many unknowns, and as someone who wants to be majority plant Based the benefits of things like egg yolks and liver are difficult to hear but seem sound. Many takeaways in here, one of them is the disbenefit of multivitamins due to the things in them you don't need or are actually negative e.g. Vitamin A which is fine just from food for most, but instead doing targeted supplements in pa An excellent diet and health book. It's hard to know whether all of it is correct as I think there are still so many unknowns, and as someone who wants to be majority plant Based the benefits of things like egg yolks and liver are difficult to hear but seem sound. Many takeaways in here, one of them is the disbenefit of multivitamins due to the things in them you don't need or are actually negative e.g. Vitamin A which is fine just from food for most, but instead doing targeted supplements in particular vitamins C, D3 and K2. So much of the science and arguments seem thorough and well stated, and I think this book is an essential read for anyone interested in this field, but some of the guidance may be controversial or annoying for some.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Joya Cousin

    I'm almost 80% through and having a hard time with the last few chapters of this book, which deal with vitamin and mineral supplementation. Most of the book is spent convincing the reader that adopting the Paleolithic style of eating real unprocessed food is ideal for health. How then can I be expected to believe that it is necessary to consume huge amounts of supplements? Intermingled with the supplementation advice are the horror stories of supplementation gone awry, for example with calcium. I'm almost 80% through and having a hard time with the last few chapters of this book, which deal with vitamin and mineral supplementation. Most of the book is spent convincing the reader that adopting the Paleolithic style of eating real unprocessed food is ideal for health. How then can I be expected to believe that it is necessary to consume huge amounts of supplements? Intermingled with the supplementation advice are the horror stories of supplementation gone awry, for example with calcium. The book is dense, I'm going to eventually have to give it another go,many I may end up skimming the last few chapters, or leaving it unfinished. We will see.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Aaron Griffin

    Like most nutrition books espousing the One True Diet, a lot of the studies come across as cherry picked. One can easily find scientific studies espousing the benefits of bean consumption, yet the PHD claims they are one of the most toxic foods a human can eat. Still, it has some good points, and some good takeaways - if you're willing to only take the parts that are useful, while discarding the rest. I personally like the section of "supplemental" foods, suggesting people should be eating eggs, Like most nutrition books espousing the One True Diet, a lot of the studies come across as cherry picked. One can easily find scientific studies espousing the benefits of bean consumption, yet the PHD claims they are one of the most toxic foods a human can eat. Still, it has some good points, and some good takeaways - if you're willing to only take the parts that are useful, while discarding the rest. I personally like the section of "supplemental" foods, suggesting people should be eating eggs, liver, seafood, and seaweed with some level of regularity for overall nutritional benefits.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Dana Monsees

    Great read with lots of scientific information about nutrition and the historical / biological basis for why humans should eat real foods, specific nutrients, etc., and actually gives a prescription for how much of what we should be eating (as guidelines, of course). Combines paleo approach with anti-inflammatory, gluten-free grains and what the authors call "safe starches". Great approach for longevity and simplicity in eating and also great for athletes. Great read with lots of scientific information about nutrition and the historical / biological basis for why humans should eat real foods, specific nutrients, etc., and actually gives a prescription for how much of what we should be eating (as guidelines, of course). Combines paleo approach with anti-inflammatory, gluten-free grains and what the authors call "safe starches". Great approach for longevity and simplicity in eating and also great for athletes.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Filis (Cadar) Omer

    I think that if you only read one book on nutrition and lifestyle, this is the one to get. The authors are researchers by profession so they are treating nutrition based on facts and their advice is very sound. The main purpose for the diet is optimal health, not fitness or weight loss, which is refreshing. I am not following all their recommendations, it is not very easy to implement for me, but I keep it in mind as a reference for the perfect diet :)

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