Vegan, low fat, low carb, slow carb: Every diet seems to promise a one-size-fits-all solution to health. But they ignore the diversity of human genes and how they interact with what we eat.
In Food, Genes, and Culture, renowned ethnobotanist Gary Nabhan shows why the perfect diet for one person could be disastrous for another. If your ancestors were herders in Northern Europe, milk might well provide you with important nutrients, whereas if you’re Native American, you have a higher likelihood of lactose intolerance. If your roots lie in the Greek islands, the acclaimed Mediterranean diet might save your heart; if not, all that olive oil could just give you stomach cramps.
Nabhan traces food traditions around the world, from Bali to Mexico, uncovering the links between ancestry and individual responses to food. The implications go well beyond personal taste. Today’s widespread mismatch between diet and genes is leading to serious health conditions, including a dramatic growth over the last 50 years in auto-immune and inflammatory diseases.
Readers will not only learn why diabetes is running rampant among indigenous peoples and heart disease has risen among those of northern European descent, but may find the path to their own perfect diet.
Using both science and personal stories, Gary Paul Nabhan alleges that people should follow diets according to their ethnic background. Because of his genes, a person with Italian roots should consume more olive oil than a person with Dutch heritage. In an age of a million and one fad diets, Nabhan's theory may provide a better approach to eating right. Meanwhile Gregory N. St. John's performance is clear and engaging. He handles scientific language with ease. Keep up, though, with his rapid pacing. Overall, this audiobook is original and thought-provoking, real food for thought.
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Interesting genetic nerddom.
Great book, terrible reading
- April Thatcher