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The Tao of Healthy Eating

by Bob Flaws, published by Blue Poppy Press (1998-01-01)

Buy now from Amazon.com for $14.95
Amazon rating of 4.0 out of 5, Amazon sales rank: 23267

Editor's Review:

Chinese dietary therapy is one of the most important aspects of Chinese medicine. The Tao of Healthy Eating illuminates the theory and practice of Chinese dietary therapy with emphasis on the concerns and attitudes of Westerners. Commonsense metaphors explain basic Chinese medical theories and their application in preventive and remedial dietary therapy. It features a clear description of the Chinese medical understanding of digestion and all the practical implications if this for day-to-day diet. Issues of Western interest are discussed, such as raw versus cooked foods, high cholesterol, food allergies, and candidacies. It includes the Chinese medical descriptions of 200 Western food and similar information on vitamins, minerals, and amino acids.

Reader Reviews:

In this world of fluff and sound bites, this book says it all without sacrificing space. For those that need the big picture in order to grasp a concept, this is your "in" into Chinese dietary rules, as well as being the answer to most of what ails us. This is the book you read BEFORE you go see an accupuncturist, and the one that keeps you going back to measure your progress.

It takes quite a book to knock my socks off, and this one left me standing naked. This is the book that I want to put the in the hands of all those people who get on the Atkins diet and within a year later hit a wall, from the excess of cold and damp foods. This book stresses the importance of balance and the problems that excess or lack of restraint can cause to health. Even though there's not a recipe in the book, it's the important book that brings understand to the quality of the energy of food, that's perhaps of greater value even than it's carb or protein content. After reading this book, I immediately took all the other Chinese books out of the bookcase combing them for recipes. With my internal lights switched on, the importance of various foods stood out and made sense as they never had before.

As Chinese medicine dictates, each food and emotion enters a channel in the body, not unlike a river. And like salmon that swim out to sea for years only to return to an exact spawning ground located in a tiny freshwater creek, so do our foods and emotions nourish our bodies in very specific and necessary ways. Excessive use of cooling foods is brought home in his section on Spleen Vacuity and dampness. For those dealing with long term food allergies, candida, and obesity (that should cover about 4 out of 5 people, if the current polls mean anything), there's salvation in this book. The quality of the food in creating a energy in the body is far more important to healing, than it's perhaps it's protein values. Reading on you'll find that even reducing protein due to inabsorbtion is probably lifesaving.

My big epiphany came as I realized that what The Tao of Healthy Eating suggests, is a heart happy diet. In fact, all that is suggested to reduce spleen dampness in Chinese remedial therapy, is exactly what produces a happy heart. And as I thumbed through the now famous by Ophrah's endorsement Perricone Promise, a book on Beauty and Longevity by an expensive MD, I had to laugh to myself. All the dietary recommendations of the Perricone diet, can be found within this tiny book of Bob Flaws, the Tao of Healthy Eating! I even renamed Perricone's book, the Happy Spleen diet book, with a new label that I made and taped to the cover. Because for those that chase beauty creams and wonder herbs, the shortest way to tighter, firmer wrinkle free skin, is simply this: Reduce stress and take care of your spleen. Nothing ages you faster than our fast food, modern, highly cooling and phlegm producing diets in solidifying and packing on the inches of girth. If truth matters as much as beauty, then learn the Tao of Healthy Eating and change your life, and your appearance too!
I recently ordered this book to learn something about TCM and nutrition. Given the title, the description, and the reputation of the author, it seemed like a good deal. But don't be misled by these facts without noticing that the book is only 114 pages without the index. The print is huge, the margins are wide--I'd have been laughed at by professors in college had I used such wide margins to extend the length of my papers. Not to mention all the headings and chapter dividers. The supposed grammatical errors didn't bother me, although they seem to suggest that the book was hastily written. Lots of interesting ideas are contained here, and Bob Flaws cites many of the principles I've read about elsewhere, but he fails to put these claims together in a coherent and logically sound way. For a guy who claims to be a doctor and therefore a scientific minded person, he fell far short of my expectations for reasonable arguments for and discussions of his observations. And for a guy who's written over 60 books, I expected more than brief summations, unfounded and startlingly unsupported claims (I really wanted this to be a great book on the subject, but his entire "conclusions" chapter is bogged and invalidated by gross misestimations and weak claims based on insufficient statistics.). Perhaps I should have realized that having written 60 books is perhaps an indicator of the kind of thought and organization being put into each individual work. Boy, this is sounding really negative, so I'll say this. I DID like the last part of the book: lists of common foods, the merdian through which they're absorbed, their post-digestive temperature, and general effects according to traditional chinese medicine. Overall, this book is a very short, very brief introduction to TCM nutrition. But just like watching a suspensful movie on an old TV that keeps fuzzing in and out, at the end of this one you're going to wish you'd just sprung for the model with rabbit ears.Received my book pretty quickly, and it was well packaged -- but was surprised that it was actually a previous library item! Don't believe this was mentioned in the description of the book, only that it was like new. Good condition and this was fine, just not expected and I would have preferred a more current printing of the book.Bob Flaw's book "The Tao of Healthy Eating" applies Chinese wisdom to modern Western eating habits and food-related health problems such as food allergies, candidiasis, cholesterol, and obesity. Included is a list of 150 foods with their characteristics in terms of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). The strength of this book lies in its explanation of how and why certain foods are healthy, not healthy or have certain effects. After reading this book you will certainly think twice before reaching for a cup of coffee! I would, however, have liked to have seen a few examples of case studies of how to apply this valuable information.

One reviewer complained that the author self-promotes his other books. That is true. And the reason is that in his books Bob Flaws takes one topic within TCM and focuses on that to help readers new to this vast field appreciate one small aspect without being overwhelmed. And a natural consequence is to point the reader to books on related areas, which he has written about - and we should be very grateful for this because Bob Flaws is a very experienced and successful TCM practitioner. If I have one complaint about his books, it is that they seem a little dry. It would be nice to see a more user-friendly page design including a few illustrations here and there, with summaries as appropriate to help the reader consolidate the information in their heads.I work in the production department at Blue Poppy Press and I can tell all interested readers that a new, revised edition of Bob's book is in the works with all the typos and "gramamtical mistakes" another reviewer found annoying fixed. This book continues to be one of our best sellers. So someone out there likes it.
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Dao of Chinese Medicine : Understanding an Ancient Healing Art

Get Healthy Now! with Gary Null: A Complete Guide to Prevention, Treatment and Healthy Living

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