Sunday, May 14, 2017

Dr. Steven R. Gundry’s The Plant Paradox: A Book Review

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When TLC book tours asked me to review Dr. Steven R. Gundry’s The Plant Paradox: The Hidden Dangers in "Healthy" Foods That Cause Disease and Weight Gain (click here for hardback and here for kindle) it came at the end of a string of self-help books and right after reading Dave Asprey’s Head Strong which tackled similar topics head on. Like Aspery, Dr. Grundy tackles the fallacies of both the western diet and lifestyle. Yet, at the same time, this book is an easy read, one that will open your eyes to both diet and lifestyle factors.

Dr. Gundy takes on lectins, their presence in our food supply, and the devastating effects that these compounds have on our gut. Citing evolutionary principles, he notes how plants have adapted to the predators by inserting lectins into their flesh. Plants find ways to spread their seeds (babies), and thus when we consume the wrong food or the right food at the wrong time or an item of foodstock we have not coevolved with, our gut suffers. When our gut suffers, the bacteria that we need to feel good suffers as well, meaning our bodies inflame, our gut’s leak, and our health suffers. We get sick (most of immune system originates in our gut) and our brain’s fog. Beyond his discussion on NASIDS, GMO's, and other modern concoctions, Dr. Gundy expounds upon the negative outcomes from lectin consumption.

How prevalent are some of these mistakes? For example, most apples you find in your local produce department are not fresh, but rather an item picked six to nine months prior. These apples were picked when they weren’t ripe and therefore they would have tasted horrible at the time and made their prey sick. They are stored, sprayed with a chemical compound to ripen right before they hit the shelves, and are thus purchased in the same state. The problem in the transaction comes in the form of the fact that the lectins originally in the apple to prevent premature consumption and protect the seeds are still present because the apple was not tree ripened. When we eat the apple, we consume the compound and are dealt with the deleterious effects. Such food faux pas litter our existence.

As a cardiologist, Dr. Gundy has had chance not only to treat many of the maladies that poor diet causes, but also the wherewithal to experiment, consider, and alter the lives of his patients. He has created a careful list of approved foods. His method consists of hitting the approved list only for a time in order to seed the gut and cleanse the body, then and only then, can we reintroduce other foods in order to explore whether our body can tolerate them. Further, he provides recipes, discusses the misconceptions, and even dissects the world’s blue zones in order to discover the secrets of human diet and longevity. In the end, he crafts a strong, great read that will establish life altering changes.

1 comment:

  1. I'm shocked that apples are picked so far in advance! Also, I'm super bummed, since we eat lots and lots of apples. Better to know, though!

    Thanks for being on this tour!