Healing With Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition (3rd Edition)

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Used as a reference by students of acupuncture, this is a hefty, truly comprehensive guide to the theory and healing power of Chinese medicine. It's also a primer on nutrition--including facts about green foods, such as spirulina and blue-green algae, and the "regeneration diets" used by cancer patients and arthritics--along with an inspiring cookbook with more than 300 mostly vegetarian, nutrient-packed recipes.

The information on Chinese medicine is useful for helping to diagnose health imbalances, especially nascent illnesses. It's smartly paired with the whole-foods program because the Chinese have attributed various health-balancing properties to foods, so you can tailor your diet to help alleviate symptoms of illness. For example, Chinese medicine dictates that someone with low energy and a pale complexion (a yin deficiency) would benefit from avoiding bitter foods and increasing "sweet" foods such as soy, black sesame seeds, parsnips, rice, and oats. (Note that the Chinese definition of sweet foods is much different from the American one!)

Pitchford says in his dedication that he hopes the reader finds "healing, awareness, and peace" from following his program. The diet is certainly acetic by American standards (no alcohol, caffeine, white flour, fried foods, or sugar, and a minimum of eggs and dairy) but the reasons he gives for avoiding these "negative energy" foods are compelling. From the adrenal damage imparted by coffee to immune dysfunction brought on by excess refined sugar, Pitchford spurs you to rethink every dietary choice and its ultimate influence on your health. Without being alarmist, he adds dietary tips for protecting yourself against the dangers of modern life, including neutralizing damage from water fluoridation (thyroid and immune-system problems may result; fluoride is a carcinogen). There's further reading on food combining, female health, heart disease, pregnancy, fasting, and weight loss. Overall, this is a wonderful book for anyone who's serious about strengthening his or her body from the inside out. --Erica Jorgensen

In an era when many people are reevaluating their diet, this whole foods encyclopedia takes an integrative approach to personalized nutrition, merging modern models with ancient Asian traditions. Featured here are guidelines on nutrition basics including "green foods"; clear discussions on the Chinese healing arts; tips on making appropriate dietary transitions; sections on weight loss, women?s health, food combining, fasting, pregnancy, children, aging, and physical and emotional disorders; and detailed "regeneration diets" designed for cancer, AIDS, and other ailments. This authoritative source on East/West nutrition is completely revised and updated, including new research on the benefits of whole foods for overcoming degenerative diseases; the parasite purge program; and Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs).

Customer Reviews:

  • THE Classic
    This book is the best investment a student or practitioner can make--period. If diet is the foundation of health, and I firmly believe it is, then this book is the foundation stone.

    It is 700+ pages and covers both basic and detailed info with an background of TCM diet therapy. The TCM jargon is explained well and made understandable for the professional and amateur alike. Pitchford's understanding was years ahead of many others, even noting the importance of fermented breads, foods, and sauces as a staple in healthy people around the globe. His recipe section is very easy to understand and implement.

    I bought this book long before I started acupuncture/TCM school and I am glad I did. It propelled me far ahead of many of my classmates in understanding the humoral basis of TCM and the importance of Sun Si Miao's famous axiom: "Before resorting to herbs and acupuncture, assess and change diet and lifestyle".

    My only minor complaint about the book is Pitchford's vegetarian leanings. He inserts some sections on Hindu dietary philosophy--basically that one can become more enlightened or 'Sattva' by elminating meats. I whole-heartedly disagree with this philosophy and have tried both vegetarianism and eating healthy, organic, properly slaughtered meats (Kosher/Halal). Being vegetarian made me lethargic and diminished my natural and healthy motivations. Healthy meats in moderation are essential--for more info see Sally Fallon's "Nourishing Traditions" my second favorite book on Diet in my extensive collection. These two books compliment each other well and should be the foundation pieces of every person's library who is truly interested in health....more info
  • Great discussions of Chinese vs. Western medical approaches
    Pitchford does an outstanding job discussing the difference in approach of Chinese vs. Western medicine and nutrition in incredible detail. Many foods are covered in great detail and recipes are included. It's a huge amount of information and takes some time to absorb. My only complaint regards application of the principals. There is not a clear, concise approach with time line check points if a person decides to implement the Chinese way. Perhaps that's another difference in approach and more a western thought than a Chinese medicine approach. ...more info
  • Informative but energetically incorrect
    The author does a great job of covering a vast amount of information with a good amount of detail. The probem I have with this book is that it is extremely bias - it suggests or implies that one would/should ultimately aspire to Sattva ideals. Primarily a lacto-vegetarian diet that tries to eat one to two meals a day. This is simply not in the best interests of many people, certainly not children, teens, or most adults that are working in the real world. To imply it as an ideal - means that anything less than is inferior. It is also not in line with Traditional Chinese nutrition theory.
    Furthermore, the food energy classifications are inconsistantly incorrect. He confuses or miscatagorizes many of the foods. Many of the foods he categorizes as cool are in fact warming and vis versa. Many writers that come from a macrobiotic background reverse Yin/Yang, Warm/Cool from that found in TCM however that does not seem to be the case here as the energetics are sometimes in agreement with classic TCM and other times not. A much more accurate catagorization of food energetics can be found in Daverick Leggett's books, Helping Ourselves and Recipes for Self-Healing.

    That said if one really understand the asian energetics of food and has a strong sense of good nutrition the remainder of the information is valuable. However it should not be relied on for accurancy or used as a resource or required text in nutrition programs or acupuncture schools due to it's obvious bias and glaring inaccuracies. ...more info
  • Fabulous
    This book is a great source of information on natural alternatives to improving your help. Very helpful and a great read, must buy. ...more info
  • Indeed a Classic
    I got this book 3 or maybe 4 years ago and I still use it for reference AND still reading it from time to time- each time learning something new. This book is like a giant sign-post pointing you to investigate deeper whatever dietary advice you might be interested in...
    It is not perfect, but as compassionate and non-dogmatic (as much as a vegan-orientated book can be), I'd say it is very close.
    ...more info
  • Healing With Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition 3rd
    Great resource book for nutrition. Covers everything....more info
  • Very helpful resource
    This book is a great resource and a treasure trove of information. It's the best book in my natural health care library. Pitchford backs up his statements with research references. His writing is clear and understandable. It's obvious that Pitchford has the wellbeing of people and the planet at heart. ...more info
  • Wonderful insight!
    Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition
    Very informative. Written so it can be easily understood. Has helped me understand my condition better and what I can do to help myself....more info
  • Very good, useful, and full of recipies
    A cheap book that introduces Chinese Nutrition very well and has an abundance of recipies. A very good deal....more info
  • Awesome - A Bible of Good Nutrition
    This book has changed our lives. The information is so complete and easy to use....more info
  • excellent source
    It is the best book on nutrition ever! Yes it is heavily biased towards TCM, but it is perfectly fine with me. I thoroughly enjoy reading this book. It has good information, research and insights....more info
  • Excellent!
    I read about this in passing somewhere in my quest for middle-aged health (and beyond!). I love Paul's approach to health, which includes thankfulness and other spiritual componants (not overtly or overbearing), as well as lots of good solid information. It is a very dense read and takes awhile to really comprehend; re-reading and taking notes are required for it to really sink in for me. But the exposure to lots of items that can support health (so many are in my health food stores - who knew?) is priceless.

    As an fyi, I actually did a telephone consult with Paul (for a fee, of course) because I found this book so valuable and also because I have a health issue that I need to resolve quickly. ...more info
  • Healing With Whole Foods: Asian Traditions
    This is a fantastic, easy to understand book on the entire art of Chinese Medicine. Very comprehensive and well-written, with recipes included in the back.
    Highly recommended to anyone interested in healing, health, and wellness. ...more info
  • WOW!!!
    This book is VERY detailed yet NOT boring. It is very well arranged and the explanations given are concise and easily understandable. This is definitely a must for the library of anyone who is interested in this art!...more info
  • Incredibly informative and thought-provoking.
    I'm a muscle therapist and have bought loads of books on manual techniques. I bought "Healing With Whole Foods" almost on a whim, thinking that "nutrition is important, but this one'll have to wait until I've read the other stuff". After taking a small peek in this tome one day I have remained totally captivated! Now I realise that tight muscles and fascia are not a cause, but a symptom which can very well be rooted in a lack of magnesium, for example. I have yet to read an uninteresting page in this book. It's very well written and an absolute joy to read. Massive respect to Pitchford! ...more info
  • Hmmmm..
    Some wonderful pearls of wisdom. Unlike the true Chinese principles, Pitchford is very biased and towards vegetarianism pointing out the political reasons why to be a vegetarian and why "flesh" eating is so horrendous for the earth, your soul, etc. I much prefer the balanced, non-judgemental approach of Linda Prout Live in the Balance: The Ground-Breaking East-West Nutrition Program and/or Daverick Leggett Recipes for Self Healing andHelping Ourselves - truly non-biased, balanced simple in his approach, informative. The Leggett books can be ordered from http://www.meridianpress.net/ and are much less expensive than Amazon....more info
  • Countless inaccuracies and biases
    This book cannot be defined anywhere near the scope of scientific integrity in the field of nutrition. There are so many inaccuracies with the data presented, which, I might add, is rather well cherry picked to support biases throughout. He also cherry picks from specific research, but leaves findings out of that research in order to support his own agenda, a la Cordain and Enig. This all goes along with the matter of how the book is incredibly poorly cited, mixing study with opinion, but yet is not nearly objective enough for scientific scrutiny. There are HUGE gaps in his research, and for someone who claims to be a nutrition researcher, Pitchford does a horrendous job. Also, as another reviewer mentioned, there's horrible contradiction in Chinese medicine, as well as even the book!

    While large, and has quite a lot of good information, there's too much that's bad to pass off....more info
  • A gift for life
    ....A wise and valuable book for anyone who is serious about examining their eating habits. A great guide for those who want to improve their life and health conditions and embrace the Chinese philosophy of Yin and Yang.This book also includes flavorful and delicious recipe's, to get you started on your journey....more info
  • A way of Life
    When you make the decision to get your health back, this book is a great start, I am amazed at how often the principles my mother employed 50 years ago pop up in this book. Beside my Mums guiding hand Mr Pitchford lays it out as it is, My thanks to him....more info
  • Great Book
    If you are serious about getting healthy the natural way this is an encyclopedia of knowledge. GET IT!...more info
  • A great text when understanding concepts in Chinese Medicine
    I first discovered this book in the nineties when working at a large natural foods chain as a natural products specialist. Since then, I am on my way to starting naturopathic medical school, where this book is considered a text book for classes in Chinese medicine/nutrition. I have discovered, any time I open the book to a random page, there is always really good, interesting, and applicable information on the page. Even if you're not a student in alternative/holistic medicine and health, this is still a great book when wanting to know about nutritional and supplemental properties of various foods, as well as some good recipes on food combining and recipes on balancing chi or the organ systems....more info
  • Extraordinary Book
    If there's one book on health you need, this is the book. Always current and full of in-depth information on the body and its systems and needs. Well written, well researched, well organized. I wouldn't be without this book and give it as gifts often. ...more info
  • Great book in nutrition!
    I almost live by this book (accept the fact that I slip into bad habits).

    It's great becuase Pitchford certainly knows a wealth of information of the human body both Chinese medically and Eastern medically.

    I highly recommend this book to those who want to be healthy and intuned with the cosmos....more info
  • Useful but not exact
    This book can be very informative and contains a great amount of information but misses the mark especially in context to Traditional Chinese Medicine's(TCM)approach to nutrition and treatment with food. The author seems to advocate vegetarianism--which has never been a philosophy of TCM. Pitchford has also confused or flipped many of the energetic qualities of foods. On a lesser note the recipes lack flavor and vitality themselves.
    This is a good reference book, but by no means should this be your only reference to nutrition from either a western or eastern perspective....more info
  • Changed my life!
    This book is simply amazing. I put myself on a diet about a year and a half ago and started looking into health foods. Nearly a year ago I found this book on Amazon and bought it after reading the reviews. It has completely transformed my eating habits and views on health, and I've never felt better. I'd say the only problem is that I annoy my family by quoting this book all the time!...more info
  • excellent book
    I find myself referring to this book often, even though I am not a vegetarian. Great information on better health through better food choices....more info
  • A nutritional bible
    This is a nutritional bible. I bought my now well worn copy when I worked in a health food store. Paul Pitchford is brilliant! He give you facts without New Age hocus-pocus, and some very, very good basic recipes - easily adaptable for different tastes. You will find his explanation of the Five Phases to be fascinating and logical. A "must have" book for anyone interested in long term health and a sustainable lifestyle.Bob's Red Mill Organic 7 Grain Pancake & Waffle, Whole Grain Mix, 26-Ounce Bags (Pack of 4) ...more info
  • Holistic benefits
    A well-researched explanation of the whole-food lifestyle, complete with its holistic benefits, backed up by sound science...more info
  • Perfect nutrition
    This book is very thorough and comprehensive. The advice works, explaining to me things like how coffee, hot sauce, processed breakfast cereals, etc is bad for me. As a recovering alcoholic, this book has helped me self-diagnose myself with having an unhealthy liver, along with the steps to take for healing. You can't just buy this book and live to be 100 and/or stop getting sick, reading this book and applying it takes discipline and effort. Most all the foods you enjoy are the ones that are bad for you, and seeking out and preparing the healthiest foods is quite a chore. Being healthy is a prerequisite to being happy, and the best guidance on health ive found after much searching is certainly this book. Buy it....more info
  • All Goodness
    Through and complete reference of living more of a plant based diet. Discusses, in detail, how to live a more complete, holistic life. Concepts are mapped out in plain and clear detail. Good Stuff ...more info
  • Comprehensive and easy to understand nutrition concepts and specifics.
    Paul Pitchford is a leading author in the US on foods that help and foods that harm us. His book needs to be on every medical practitioners desk for quick reference and for sharing instructions with our clients....more info
  • Glad I got this book.
    This book was recommended to me and has come in handy for reference. It's really like a bible for people who are open to eastern and western medicine but prefer to use food rather than pills to help the body do its thing well....more info
  • A rational and workable approach to health and eating
    I have fibromyalgia and got tired of doctors experimenting on me with drugs and other substances. The nutrition information out there is highly contradictory, and I wanted to find a way to eat and to live that would make me feel better but also be practical to do and make sense.

    Pitchford presents his material in a logical and mostly easy-to-understand way. Drawing from Asian traditions (mostly Chinese medicine but also Ayervedic) with a wealth of supporting Western research, he goes from general to specific so that both those without medical training and those with can make good use of the book. It's far more than just "eat less refined food." If the end result is that you do so, you'll have gotten plenty of value for your purchase and the good news is that you'll want to. But Pitchford also presents much more information, and although the wealth of specifics pertaining to Chinese medicine were too much for me to understand and reconcile, his approaches to my general constitution type and specific medical complaints were very easy to understand and implement and what's best, they work.

    Pitchford doesn't have a particular dietary axe to grind, other than the aforementioned elimination of refined foods. His recommended way to eat incorporates lots of whole grains and vegetables, but he doesn't advocate vegetarianism for everyone, nor does he present absolutes such as "you should never eat ______." He talks about easing into a new way of eating and makes it painless to achieve. I have shelves full of books on diet and health, but this is the only one I consider indispensable. I wish I'd started living my life this way before I started collapsing. Thankfully, I am well on my way back to a normal life, and I consider this book a large part of the reason why....more info
  • Recommended
    Well-researched and makes a lot of sense. There is a lot of information in this book and I have found it extremely helpful.

    Great buy!...more info
  • Healing with whole foods
    A wonderful, easy to read, all encompassing and scientific. A true enjoyment, both for a conventional, health seaking, reader, and a health professional. ...more info
  • just about flawless . . . a sparkling jewel!
    OK, I'll reveal the one flaw in Mr. Pitchford's book: he doesn't talk about cashews. May this be a source of humility, because everything else about the book is fantastic. This book can be used to take charge of your health, and it won't let you down, because it's not hype, it not trendy, it's not trying to be a best-seller by giving you the newest-fangled "Pitchford Diet," "Big Sur Diet," whatever, but it simply presents the truth and wisdom about health that the author has accrued--searching both East and West--over decades of practice, experience, and research. If it's better health you desire, this book will take you as far as you want to go. If you want to help others to get well, it will be your constant companion....more info
  • If I could only own one book
    it would be Paul Pitchford's Healing with Whole Foods. I use it constantly. I have been reading it for the last 2 years, and every time I pick it up I find something more interesting about food and health.

    I have bought 5 copies of this book for friends because it is so life changing and fantastic if you are looking to make a dietary change from the Standard American Diet (SAD), if you want to incorporate more whole foods into your diet, or if you are looking to better understand the realationship between your diet and your health.

    In addition to the being the most comprehensive reference book on the specfic healing characteristics for whole foods, it also contains delightful inspiration and discusses things like vibrational cooking, and how different methods of cooking impart certain energies to the dish. It is also a huge VEGAN recipe book!

    This book revolutionized the way i think about food. My health and well being has never been better, I am cooking more and with greater pleasure, and my diet has never been healthier and more attuned to my needs.
    ...more info
  • Great resource
    You can't read this book in one sitting. It's massive. Best used as a reference book. A must for your library....more info
  • Fascinating
    Out of all the books I've read, I have never been moved to review a book before

    I picked up this 8x10, 700 page book and I can't put it down

    if you possibly have the room for it (in your home and in your schedule) I would highly recommend picking it up

    I'm only on page 76 and I've learned a ton
    It has an asian-based influence (sub title is 'Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition')

    all ailments are either damp or dry, external or internal, warm or cold and this affects the approach to treatment

    so far I've read about how to cleanse the liver and how people who weren't breastfed (I wasn't) may not have fully activated their liver functions (which goes with what my acupuncturist is saying- that my endometriosis is actually just a symptom of a liver problem)

    it's a spiritual, emotional, nutritional supplement and whole food guide all in one- I've never read anything like it before

    One note to the author- I was so inspired by the content that I looked the website www.healingwithwholefoods.com and this 'coming soon' message on the website does NOT cut it my friend- you've got to pull this together ASAP...more info
  • amazing book
    this is the most amazing health book I've ever read, it is like a bible for healing and/or balancing your life throught food and good habits....more info
  • Excellent reference book for anyone serious about health & nutrition
    This is one of the books on Health and Nutrition that I refer back to most frequently. It's detailed and well written. Highly recommended!...more info
  • Notice what is missing from the 5 star ratings....
    This book was recommended to me by an accupuncturist who did a great job on my back. I found it contradictory and ultimately confusing to the point of being useless. Readers are encouraged to diagnose themselves as being damp or dry, warm or cold, with an interior or exterior issue, and with an excess or a deficiency. (There may be more categories, that's all I can remember now.) The main problem with the book is that if one is, say, both damp and cold (which Pitchford states is a common combination) then the dietary advice is contradictory. One chapter says to eat raw vegetables, the next says no. One says eat meat, the next says no. One says fruit, the next says no. One stresses brown rice, the next says very little brown rice. In addition, being too far along one axis is the same as being the opposite condition. If you just said "Huh??" then get used to it if you order this book.

    Lastly, the big puzzle to me in reading all these 5 star reviews is that not one person (unless there is a review I missed) discusses how their health was improved, how they lost weight, anything! Isn't that really the proof of a book on dietary recommendations?

    Bottom line: eat whole foods, not processed, organic if possible, and a variety of produce, whole grains, and small portions of lean meat. I just saved you 700+ pages of reading and $30-something. And you're welcome.
    ...more info
  • My whole foods 'bible'
    Just as the majority of others,I give this book 5 stars. I have been using it almost daily for several years. True,I am a holistic practitioner,but I use it personally with and for my family. My husband actually got the book as his course text for a nutrition course in his Acupuncture graduate program. I have used it far more than he.
    With beginners,or say,someone new to all of the 'type diagnosing',I usually recommend they look through the back glossary of foods,categorized by types such as legumes,veggies,fruits,etc. Pitchford breaks down the 'energies' of the foods so well,and gives a brief overview of how they are helpful,along with some basic recipes.
    He also has sections on oils,sweeteners,greens/chlorophyll,etc.
    I just don't see how anyone would be confused or find it contradictory,if you take it a little at a time,and don't attempt to 'diagnose yourself western style'. [this is the trick-it's not a how-to manual;it's a resource guide!]
    You can learn the basics of what is important and why,which types of sweeteners to replace with what,etc.
    What I love about this book,too,is his focus on assisting those who are transitioning from a more standard western diet. ie,he will discuss meat,fish and their healing properties,when they may be needed,when to avoid,how to transition from,etc.
    This is not an 'all or none' preachy type of book.
    Pitchford is sincere and obviously knowledgeable/experienced.
    For all around great,useful books on health and nutrition,I really cannot think of any other that I'd recommend so highly. Accessible to beginners,but will still challenge/provide info for more experienced folks/practitioners....more info
  • Foods That Heal
    This is a pretty good book. My acupuncturist recommended it. It has good advice....more info
  • Healing with whole foods: asian traditions and modern nutrition
    Excellent. A must read for anyone wanting to change unhealthy nutritional habits. Offers a life long approach to food and it's intrinsic value to the body. ...more info
  • This is The Best book in The Universe
    Really. It going to help you understand what is goin on with food and your body. It has helped me a lot. There is a huge amount of information in here and it can get confusing, so take it slowly.

    This is written more or less as a textbook. It has wide margins for taking notes. I take notes and underline significant passages when reading this book. This helps me find those parts later.

    In the end, being healthy with whole foods is about listening to your body:

    Knowing what to eat and how much

    Knowing what NOT to eat and when

    Shifting diet with seasons, stress, and circumstances.

    Having a healthful diet is different for everyone. Moderation is probably the essential virtue that will help to attain radiant, lasting health. ...more info
  • Molly Stubbs
    I bought this book six years ago in the Unity Church bookstore and have referred to it regularly ever since. I was having gastro-intestinal problems at the time, and several (mainstream) doctors had said they couldn't help me. I believe this book has helped my manage some of my health issues, but not all. The book is very thorough, and gives the reader a good sense of the healing properties of almost all commonly-used foods.

    Having said that, I think there are some serious downsides to this book and Mr. Pitchford's approach. First, I think he is very extreme and biased, and too quick to refer to every frightening or negative study that shows why you should not eat a certain food or product. For example, he advocates avoiding any food or cookware with aluminum, citing a study done several decades ago liking aluminum with alzheimer's disease. After going into a panic, I threw away all my aluminum cookware. As it turns out, the results of that study were never repeated, and even the Sierra Club is no longer supporting that theory. He cites countless other frightening studies as well, many of which have not been vetted by the scientific community or the community of nutritionists and dietitians.

    Another major problem with the book is that no normal person could possibly follow his recommended diet plans. I am a pretty disciplined person when it comes to food and cooking, but I could not in a million years follow all of his recommendations. For one thing, I would never be able to eat out or travel again. By the way, I lived in Japan for four years, and they sure as heck don't eat like this.

    Finally, The recipes in the book are bland and boring. Hats off to anyone who can actually eat that stuff....more info
  • Must for anyone interested in Chinese medicine and nutrition!
    This book is fantastic. It is a must have if you are interested in Chinese medicine and nutrition. My acupuncturist recommended it to me because of my interest in my supplementing treatment with diet. The book has been so helpful in helping me to better my diet and add things to it that are necessary for my health. What I really like is that although it does stress vegetarian diet, it still makes points about the effectiveness of animal products and meat (which I need for my condition).

    The structure of the book is really clear even for a non practicioner. It explains chinese medicine theory simply and goes through many different disorders (helpful if you've had a TCM practicioner diagnose you first) and treatments. It can be used as a reference manual or the whole book can be read through from beginning to end. The latter is recommended because of the different coinciding remedies given throughout will have you flipping back and forth through chapters if you just choose to plunge in to a specific section. I highly recommend this one for your library, you will use it often!...more info
  • Whole Food Healing
    This work integrates ancient notions of yin (coolness and saltiness) with
    yang (sweetness, ascending and energy). Chronic diseases; such as, arthritis
    benefit from avoidance of calcium inhibitors, coffee, too much meat/protein, alcohol, refined sugar, increased salt, avoidance of nightshade veggies i.e. tomato, potato and eggplant.

    Arthritics also need to reduce wind dampness with black cohosh, devil's claw and ginger herbs. Sea veggies; such as, hijki and wakame have the highest level of calcium or 1300-1400 mg. per serving. Kelp has approximately 100 mg of calcium and dried wheatgrass has 500 mg. In addition, calcium should be taken with Vit D and an appropriate level of sunshine. Silicon in plant fiber assists in calcium metabolism.

    This book would be extremely helpful in managing the nutrient load
    processed by the body as a result of whole food ingestion and vitamins....more info
  • Real information on all aspects of foods
    There are many books that advise a certain way of eating, but this book gives scientific back up information that isn't slanted to pushing a diet book. It is good for anyone with an interest in nutrition, but also should not be missed by anyone interested in Chinese medicine. It has become a textbook with multiple printings for good reason. It helps you really understand the way foods work with your individual makeup and gives guidelines that help you choose what will be most beneficial for your weaknesses.

    I took this book out of the library and then added it to my personal collection as an important reference. ...more info
  • Most Recommended Health Book, Learn Why
    I purchased Healing With Whole Foods about two years ago because my friend who is an acupuncturist suggested it. The book describes how to health practitioner Paul Pitchford diagnoses and treats diseases in his patients. The book is definately a definitive at home alternative health encyclopedia.

    For example, the book has a section which explains how to do a liver and gall bladder cleanse.

    The book also explains Chinese medicine in great detail. It explains how the author has cured diseases and helped patients, for example it has a detailed section on Cancer. And this is what is important, this book explains how to heal certain diseases, not just treat the symptoms of disease. That being said, it probably will be difficult to actually cure your illness just from reading the book. It has sort of a reference nature to it, it has helpful information, but the application can be more difficult.

    The author also is an open minded vegetarian. His dietary guidelines include soaking whole grains and legumes for enhanced digestion, which is important. He believes that it is okay to eat meat and seafood for special circumstances, but in general does not support it. If your looking to understand eastern medicine in a thorough yet comprehensible way, this book is for you. If your looking for an open minded perspective about health and disease, this book is for you. If you are looking for some help about alternative recommendations for treating illnesses, again this book is for you.

    The drawback for me is that as much as I wanted to read the book, I just couldn't get into it. It has all the markings of a great book, but may not be right for everyone.

    Ramiel Nagel is author of Healing Our Children: Because Your New Baby Matters! Sacred Wisdom for Preconception, Pregnancy, Birth and Parenting (ages 0-6) & Cure Tooth Decay: Heal and Prevent Cavities with Nutrition (First Edition)...more info
  • Great resource!
    This book is a great reference for eating healthy. It is a little overwhelming due to its size, but if you use it just as a reference book and look things up (instead of trying to read it cover to cover), you will be very happy with it. Great recipes too!...more info
  • An information-packed read.
    I attended the Heartwood Institute for massage therapy in 2003-04, where Paul Pitchford teaches and resides, for six months. I turned down an opportunity for a personal assessment and nutrition counseling with the author himself. I look back now and know the reason - I wasn't ready to make a change in my lifestyle. I am still not a 100% "health-nut," but I have been educated beyond words by this book. It can be a very slow read, due to the amount of information packed onto each page. There is so much to know about the properties of foods and the direct impact they have on one's body. Coming from a society where meals are generally rushed through, animal products are deemed "essential," and foods low in calories and fat are considered "healthy," no matter how stripped they are of natural content, I found this to be fresh air to clean out previous assumptions on healthful eating....more info
  • Take your home healing to the next level.
    For anyone who has enjoyed books on health and alternative healing, this book will help you take your home healing to the next level. Paul Pitchford outlines the basics of oriental medicine, and how the principles of yin and yang can be applied to your diet to improve your health. Facts in this book are well documented, and theories are well-balanced. In other words, this is NOT a book of extremes, fads, or cult-like practices.

    This book can be frustrating to some because it is not designed to be used as a reference book (even though the index is extensive and thorough), but rather as a book you read from start to finish. It is encyclopedic in length, but reading chapters in their entirety is much more beneficial than trying to skim for answers.

    There are no "quick fixes" in this book. It advises you on how to make lifestyle and dietary changes in order to realign your health. It takes TIME to follow the approaches suggested inthis book, and it's not always convenient. But if you're ready to dedicate yourself to truly healing your body with the foods you eat, then this book is highly advised. ...more info
  • My food bible
    I love this book! I have been using it for about 10 years and wanted the new edition. The author explains the energy-based philosophy of Eastern Nutrition in a clear, understandable way. I love the explanation of grains and their value, how to transition to a mostly vegetarian way of eating, fasting, juicing, and so much more....more info