A book titled The China Study: Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss, and Long-Term Health is an eye opener in terms of finding out more about nutrition and how we can enjoy a long and healthy life. The authors advocate a whole foods, plant based diet. It just so happens that many of these foods, indeed all fruits and vegetables can also be termed alkaline foods. When reading this book, I was struck by the simplicity of the message and it all seemed to make so much sense.
The China Study website says:
Even today, as the low-carb craze sweeps the nation, two-thirds of adults are still obese and children are being diagnosed with Type II diabetes, typically an “adult” disease, at an alarming rate. If we’re eating healthier, why are Americans stricken with heart disease as much as we were 30 years ago?
This is a question that’s hard to answer if you’re a meat eater. Since reading this book, I’ve gone from being interested in health and thinking that lean meat and eggs were good for me to changing almost overnight to cutting out all meat, dairy and fish from my diet. You’d be surprised just how easy it can be. I’m now cooking for myself much more often rather than eating out, which in turn is saving me money too. The main reason I do it though is so that I know what’s going into the dishes that I’m making.
The China Study was an academic project undertaken and paid for by Cornell University, the University of Oxford, and the government of China. It started in the 1970s and lasted until the end of the 1980s. As the name suggests, it took place in China. In total the epidemiological study examined the diets, lifestyle and disease characteristics of populations in 65 rural Chinese counties. Then in 1991, the authors – led by T. Colin Campbell published their results which were subsequently turned into The China Study book.
The study has received high praise from both academic and mainstream sources. Jane E. Brody writes in the New York Times:
Eating a lot of protein, especially animal protein, is also linked to chronic disease. Americans consume a third more protein than the Chinese do, and 70 percent of American protein comes from animals, while only 7 percent of Chinese protein does. Those Chinese who eat the most protein, and especially the most animal protein, also have the highest rates of the ”diseases of affluence” like heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
Probably the most well known follower of the proposed whole foods, plant based diet is the former U.S. President, Bill Clinton. After he underwent heart surgery, he completely changed his diet in an effort to reduce the risk factors for future cardiac events. If it’s good enough for Clinton, don’t you think it deserves your full attention?