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Whole: Rethinking the Science of Nutrition

de T. Colin Campbell, Howard Jacobson (Autor)

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339976,254 (3.94)1
Health & Fitness. Science. Self-Improvement. Nonfiction. HTML:

What happens when you eat an apple? The answer is vastly more complex than you imagine.

Every apple contains thousands of antioxidants whose names, beyond a few like vitamin C, are unfamiliar to us, and each of these powerful chemicals has the potential to play an important role in supporting our health. They impact thousands upon thousands of metabolic reactions inside the human body. But calculating the specific influence of each of these chemicals isn't nearly sufficient to explain the effect of the apple as a whole. Because almost every chemical can affect every other chemical, there is an almost infinite number of possible biological consequences??and that's just from an apple.

Nutritional science, long stuck in a reductionist mindset, is at the cusp of a revolution. The traditional gold standard of nutrition research has been to study one chemical at a time in an attempt to determine its particular impact on the human body. These sorts of studies are helpful to food companies trying to prove there is a chemical in milk or prepackaged dinners that is "good" for us, but they provide little insight into the complexity of what actually happens in our bodies or how those chemicals contribute to our health.

In The China Study, T. Colin Campbell revolutionized the way we think about our food with the evidence that a whole food, plant-based diet is the healthiest way to eat. Now, in Whole, he explains the science behind that evidence, the ways our current scientific paradigm ignores the fascinating complexity of the human body, and why, if we have such overwhelming evidence that everything we think we know about nutrition is wrong, our eating habits haven't changed.

Whole is an eye-opening, paradigm-changing journey through cutting-edge thinking on nutrition, a scientific tour de force with powerful implications for our health and for our world.… (mais)

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    drm19: Books about the food industry, its influence on science, and why consumers might be so confused about what's really healthy.
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Mostrando 1-5 de 9 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
This book had some interesting information, but he seemed to harp on the same points many different ways, such as how the powers that be in food and other commercial enterprises are so money hungry that they are harming us for their profit. I got the message early on and really didn't need the numerous examples and restatements. Other than that, he made some good points. ( )
  Wren73 | Mar 4, 2022 |
Excellent explanation of why plant-based diets have yet to hit the mainstream big time. Knowing what I know from reading numerous books and seeing numerous films on the subject, I sometimes wonder why the media is so silent about the benefits of a whole foods, plant-based diet (referred to as a WFPB diet by Dr. Campbell). According to Campbell, there are two primary reasons his work and others are ignored by the mainstream press:

1. The type of research that has been done to show the remarkable effects of eating a WFPB diet is what Campbell refers to as "wholistic". The scientific community is, in general, convinced that the only type research that is worth paying attention to is "reductionist" - research into one element, looking for one effect. Campbell shows us why this approach, while valuable, cannot ever address nutrition adequately. The way our bodies metabolize food is incredibly complex, relying on the interactions of many different systems, and dependent on many variables. A reductionist approach can never see this. It is impossible to take one small nutrient from one whole food and learn what it really does, because it does its work in combination with other nutrients and as part of a large system.

Campbell's scientific background means that he understands how research is done and how awards are granted to research projects. Because the reductionist method is preferred, funding is rarely available for other types of research. Campbell has experience as a researcher, as a teacher, and as a member of panels that award grants. He has seen the system from the inside out.

2. Corporations control what we learn. Corporations are large funders of the non-profit disease-centered organizations, like the American Cancer Society. These organizations, usually led by well-meaning persons who genuinely want to help those with these diseases, are given a lot of "help" by the corporations who offer them large donations. Corporations are involved in research grants as well. Corporations have great influence over our national governmental organizations, like the National Institutes of Health, through their lobbies and other means. It is difficult not to be influenced by the meat,dairy, and pharmaceutical industries, even for those who think they are not.

Further, our media is not doing its job. It is meant to be the "fourth estate" - the independent monitors. But too often reporters, most of whom have little scientific training, buy press releases from governmental and NGOs whole hog. In a recent case, the National Cancer Institute issued a press release that cancer rates had gone down, that there was a big drop. There was a media frenzy, reporting that the "war on cancer" was working. Oddly, nobody thought to ask a critical question: what does "big drop" mean? It was a drop of less than one percent. With lazy and uninformed media toeing the line, what hope is there for the rest of us?

One hope is that we ask the questions ourselves, that we not accept the spoon-feeding offered. Campbell believes that the top-down method will not work here: a revolution needs to start with us. First, adopt a WFPB diet. Influence others to do the same. Read the relevant books. This revolution may eventually be televised. ( )
  slojudy | Sep 8, 2020 |
I tend to believe him, but it's just too depressing reading about all the foods that are not good for me but that I love. Maybe another time I'll get through it.
  Siubhan | Feb 28, 2018 |
Filled with exhaustive examples of corruption and cover ups, yet dearth particulars supporting the "Whole nutrition." The book indeed covered it some, but dwelled much more on addressing biases and criticisms rather than supporting it's own conclusions. ( )
  LaPhenix | Dec 29, 2015 |
I found this book to be preachy, condescending, boring, and repetitive. It was extremely easy to follow and understand but it could have added more information rather than repeating the same ideas continuously. What it does have going for it is that it clearly explains how nutrition standards and statistics are generated and points out biases in medical research.

Unfortunately, this author has a clear agenda of his own, but, to his credit, he admits this freely. He also points out that his research is largely anecdotal and circumstantial, that he has not established clear causality in many cases, and that his conclusions go against main-stream science and even the scientific method itself.

This book is good for people who want to explore different approaches to medicine and nutrition from an alternate perspective. ( )
  SENSpence | Jul 26, 2015 |
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Campbell, T. ColinAutorautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Jacobson, HowardAutorautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Hagen, DonNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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Health & Fitness. Science. Self-Improvement. Nonfiction. HTML:

What happens when you eat an apple? The answer is vastly more complex than you imagine.

Every apple contains thousands of antioxidants whose names, beyond a few like vitamin C, are unfamiliar to us, and each of these powerful chemicals has the potential to play an important role in supporting our health. They impact thousands upon thousands of metabolic reactions inside the human body. But calculating the specific influence of each of these chemicals isn't nearly sufficient to explain the effect of the apple as a whole. Because almost every chemical can affect every other chemical, there is an almost infinite number of possible biological consequences??and that's just from an apple.

Nutritional science, long stuck in a reductionist mindset, is at the cusp of a revolution. The traditional gold standard of nutrition research has been to study one chemical at a time in an attempt to determine its particular impact on the human body. These sorts of studies are helpful to food companies trying to prove there is a chemical in milk or prepackaged dinners that is "good" for us, but they provide little insight into the complexity of what actually happens in our bodies or how those chemicals contribute to our health.

In The China Study, T. Colin Campbell revolutionized the way we think about our food with the evidence that a whole food, plant-based diet is the healthiest way to eat. Now, in Whole, he explains the science behind that evidence, the ways our current scientific paradigm ignores the fascinating complexity of the human body, and why, if we have such overwhelming evidence that everything we think we know about nutrition is wrong, our eating habits haven't changed.

Whole is an eye-opening, paradigm-changing journey through cutting-edge thinking on nutrition, a scientific tour de force with powerful implications for our health and for our world.

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