4 / 5 Stars
A frank examination of the food industry / 'Big Pharma', with some wise words about sensible eating.
First thing's first. This book is not another crazy diet plan (huzzah!). Instead, it's an in-depth, accessible exploration of the way we look at food and medication, and why our attitudes need to shift.
The book starts with a horrifying appraisal of mass-farming and food production. There's nothing revelationary here, it's all stuff you're probably aware of already - but it makes for shocking and saddening reading, nonetheless. Basically, the conclusion is that we're being cleverly micro-managed by the food giants into eating what they want us to eat because it's cheap to manufacture...not because it's good for us.
The same applies for the major pharmaceutical companies, whose focus on driving profit comes at the cost of their customers' health. Again, nothing so surprising here, but when collated into the one book, it makes for uncomfortable, anger-inducing reading.
So then, what should we all be eating? Well, unsurprisingly, the author is an advocate of getting back to basics and eating what our grandparents used to eat. Fresh fruit and veg (minus the pesticides and weird treatments to make them stay fresh for longer), good quality, locally sourced meat and fish, and plenty of herbs and spices. Again, it's nothing you won't be aware of already, but it's interesting to read.
I think that very much encapsulates the book's essential nature actually. I don't think the author is trying to reveal new stuff here. Instead, she's trying to get the reader to see sense and to stop trusting the mega food companies / big pharma organisations who only have interest in our wallets. In that respect, she completely succeeds. The book is accessible, engaging, and all the more convincing thanks to her narrative style, which is pure no-nonsense Scot.
There were certain sections that I personally favoured over others - for instance, the information on the different herbs and their health benefits was really interesting. I also found the author's own personal experiences very compelling - and again, it gives the book that strong sense of personality that sets it apart from other similar tomes.
If you're concerned about what you put on your plate and you want to get back to a simpler, healthier way of eating, this is a great book to get you inspired. I'd recommend.