I started reading The China Study a few days back. Finished it last night.
I did skimmed through the last few chapters (Appendixes, etc) but I had read enough.
In case you are interested, below are the links for the paperback version and the hardcopy version.
While reading I copied some of the important points (or at least I found important) in the book:
We must know why misinformation dominates our society and why we are grossly mistaken in how we investigate diet and disease, how we promote health and how we treat illness.
Much of my early career was spent working with two of the most toxic chemicals ever discovered, dioxin and aflatoxin.
I then noticed a research report from India that had some very provocative, relevant findings. Indian researchers had studied two groups of rats. In one group, they administered the cancer-causing aflatoxin, then fed a diet that was composed of 20% protein, a level near what many of us consume in the West. In the other group, they administered the same amount of aflatoxin, but then fed a diet that was only composed of 5% protein. Incredibly, every Single animal that consumed the 20% protein diet had evidence of liver cancer, and every single animal that consumed a 5% protein diet avoided liver cancer. It was a 100 to 0 score, leaving no doubt that nutrition trumped chemical carcinogens, even very potent carcinogens, in controlling cancer.
We found that not all proteins had this effect. What protein conSistently and strongly promoted cancer? Casein, which makes up 87% of cow's milk protein, promoted all stages of the cancer process. What type of protein did not promote cancer, even at high levels of intake? The safe proteins were from plants, including wheat and soy. As this picture came into view, it began to challenge and then to shatter some of my most cherished assumptions.`
Early scientists like Carl Voit (1831-1908), a prominent German scientist, were staunch champions of protein. Voit found that "man" needed only 48.5 grams per day, but nonetheless he recommended a whopping 118 grams per day because of the cultural bias of the time. Protein equaled meat, and everyone aspired to have meat on his or her table, just as we aspire to have bigger houses and faster cars. Voit figured you can't get too much of a good thing.
Can you guess what food we might eat to most efficiently provide the building blocks for our replacement proteins? The answer is human flesh. Its protein has just the right amount of the needed amino acids. But while our fellow men and women are not for dinner, we do get the next "best" protein by eating other animals.
Dietary fats and cholesterol don't necessarily turn into body fat and blood cholesterol
Several studies have now shown, in both experimental animals and in humans, that consuming animal-based protein increases blood cholesterol levels.
18 Saturated fat and dietary cholesterol also raise blood cholesterol, although these nutrients are not as effective at doing this as is animal protein. In contrast, plant-based foods contain no cholesterol and, in various other ways, help to decrease the amount of cholesterol made by the body. All of this was consistent with the findings from the China Study.
Vitamin C primarily comes from fruit, and eating fruit was also inversely associated with esophageal cancer.
Consuming diets high in protein and fat transfers calories away from their conversion into body heat to their storage form-as body fat (unless severe calorie restriction is causing weight loss). In contrast, diets low in protein and fat cause calories to be "lost" as body heat. In research, we say that storing more calories as fat and losing less as heat means being more efficient. I bet that you would rather be a little more inefficient and convert it into body heat rather than body fat, right?
Well, simply consuming a diet lower in fat and protein can do this. This is what our China Study data show. Chinese consume more calories both because they are more physically active and because their consumption of low-fat, low-protein diets shifts conversion of these calories away from body fat to body heat. This is true even for the least physically active Chinese. Remember, it takes very little, only fifty calories a day, to change our storage of body fat and thus change our body weight.
We found that calories were "burned" at a faster rate and transformed into body heat as more oxygen was consumed.
Generally speaking, you can eat as much as you want and still lose weight-as long you eat the right type of food.
...animal protein, unlike plant protein, increases the acid load in the body.3 An increased acid load means that our blood and tissues become more acidic. The body does not like this acidic environment and begins to fight it. In order to neutralize the acid, the body uses calcium, which acts as a very effective base. This calcium, however, must come from somewhere. It ends up being pulled from the bones, and the calcium loss weakens them, putting them at greater risk for fracture.
THE BENEFITS OF A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE are enormous. I want you to know that you can:
• live longer
• look and feel younger
• have more energy
• lose weight
• lower your blood cholesterol
• prevent and even reverse heart disease
• lower your risk of prostate, breast and other cancers
• preserve your eyesight in your later years
• prevent and treat diabetes
• avoid surgery in many instances
• vastly decrease the need for pharmaceutical drugs
• keep your bones strong
• avoid impotence
• avoid stroke
• prevent kidney stones
• keep your baby from getting Type 1 diabetes
• alleviate constipation
• lower your blood pressure
• avoid Alzheimer's
• beat arthritis
• and more ...
These are only some of the benefits, and all of them can be yours. The price? Simply changing your diet. I don't know that it has ever been so easy or so relatively effortless to achieve such profound benefits.
... cholesterol and vitamins A, D and B12• Three of these are nonessential nutrients. As discussed above, cholesterol is made by our bodies naturally. Vitamin A can be readily made by our bodies from beta-carotene, and vitamin D can be readily made by our bodies simply by exposing our skin to about fifteen minutes of sunshine every couple days. Both of these vitamins are toxic if they are consumed in high amounts.
It is estimated that we hold a three-year store of vitamin B12 in our bodies. If you do not eat any animal products for three years or more, or are pregnant or breastfeeding, you should consider taking a small B12 supplement on occasion, or going to the doctor annually to check your blood levels of B vitamins and homocysteine. Likewise, if you never get sunshine exposure, especially during the winter months, you might want to take a vitamin D supplement. I would recommend taking the smallest dose you can find and making more of an effort to get outside.
Part 2 coming up...
I strongly encourage you to read this book.
Read my very first post here.Do read my posts on The China Study
Everyone is responsible for their health