John McDougall, M.D., a long-time pioneer in the low fat, starch based diet clinically shown to reverse many chronic conditions brought on by improper diet — diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, etc. is author of a new book, The Starch Solution which clearly lays out the scientific and anthropological evidence that it is this kind of diet that is the natural diet of humans. He recently presented an hour-long lecture entitled “The Diet Wars,” which I highly recommend. The lecture is free to view on YouTube and is posted below.
Yes, every day we are bombarded with information on a new diet that will help us lose weight, and do so quickly, and perhaps even without having to stop favorite indulgences. That was the idea behind the long-running low carb diet popularity; first there was the Atkins diet and it was followed by other popular diets including the Zone Diet and the South Beach Diet, and recently the 17-Day Diet and the popular “Paleo” diets and “primal” diets. While there are variances, all recommend restricting carbohydrates, and put an emphasis on eating lean cuts of meat, certain kinds of fats.
Oddly despite the claims of the hunter-gatherer primal diet of mostly meat and non-starchy vegetables, anthropological evidence does not support this. Dr. McDougall discusses at length what the evidence actually reveals; humans are starch eaters and have been for thousands of years.
He discusses the present day and the aforementioned diets which are at variance with evidence, and also speaks of the early diet pioneers who influenced his own work, which dates back to the 1970s. We may have heard of the pioneer Nathan Pritikin and the Pritikin diet which dates back to the 1950s, but Walter Kempner and his rice diet are lesser known, and date back to the late 1930s.
You can also check out his recent article which also discusses the low carb and “Paleo” diets by clicking here. What I appreciate so much is that this is not a cynical marketing ploy to sell books, but to educate the public. We have seen a number of public figures and celebrities embrace a low fat vegan diet — former President Bill Clinton is perhaps the most notable example, who went public two years ago, about why he chose to reverse his cardiovascular disease with the diet outlined in Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D.’s book, Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure widely available everywhere. His story was widely publicized via Sanjay Gupta, M.D.’s CNN documentary.
Lately Rosie O’Donnell who revealed she suffered a serious heart attack, subsequently revealed via Twitter that she too has taken this approach and has spoken with Dr. Esselstyn.
So if you have been curious to know what is this all about, you can get a detailed primer from Dr. McDougall’s lecture and find out more about the diet that his also quite helpful for weight loss, as I can attest to as it is the plan I follow daily to maintain my weight, effortlessly. The book The Starch Solution is quite helpful — as are the many resources, including a very active and large community forum at drmcdougall.com.
Decades later, the evidence is in. These whole food plant-based diets can and do help you lose weight and avoid and/or reverse serious chronic disease. It’s time for the truth to win out over the marketing ploys.
So do check out the free lecture by John McDougall, M.D.!
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