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The Perfect Health Diet!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

This is a negative review and I know that there are people here who like this program. I am writing from the point of view of a diabetic who needs to lose weight and those two points are the main criteria I use when I judge a dietary program.

Paul Jaminet, Ph.D. and his wife, Shou-Ching Jaminet, Ph.D. have written the "Perfect Health Diet". So cool===they call the diet the PHD. A photo of a piece of medium rare steak graces the front cover and a strawberry ice cream sundae the back cover.

For me, the Perfect Health Diet would be the Perfect Dead Diet. Its precepts include:
"DO eat about one pound per day -- roughly four fist-sized servings--of "safe starches": white rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes...and up to another pound of sugary plants--fruits , berries, beets, carrots, and such...."
Do eat: At least a half pound...of fatty meats, seafood, and eggs.
Do eat: 2-4 tablespoons of healthful cooking oils and fats per day--butter, sour cream, beef tallow, duck fat...."
AVOID: milk, but DO eat butter, sour cream, nice cream, cheese, yogurt."

So in a diet that's a delight to both the vegetarians and the low-carbers alike, after we have slathered foie gras on our fatty steak and potatoes... and after we have filled ourselves up with 2-3 pounds of plant food and 1/2 to one pound of meat and our 4 tablespoons of beef tallow--then we fast for 16 hours. Then we can have some plantains and bananas. Also you have to eat .25 pound of beef or lamb liver once a week. Can we say Hannibal Lector? No, we cannot because the diet does not permit fava beans.

They do mention exercise and also counsel readers to "be of good cheer". I am glad that they mention exercise, but they think once a week is sufficient for cardio. They also want your exercise to "nudge" your circadian rhythms and they think it should be done outdoors. Nothing wrong with outdoor exercise, but the "proof" of its superiority is that house flies disrupt their circadian rhythms when they live indoors. Yes, they use the example of the fly! Why not seek for something like a ...mammal?

This PHD may work for some people, but I'm one Ph.D. who would go into hyperglycemic shock followed by a hypoglycemic coma and then I would be perfectly dead! The prolonged fasting, cheerfully called "autophagy" (that's self-cannibalism to you and me) is meant to get the body to "eat" up its infections, its illnesses, and its parasites and pathogens. Along the way, the PHD will cure your "traumatic brain injury" and get rid of your "chlamydia" and your "salmonella" and take action against your HIV and herpes.

If anyone can tell me why this program would work--what it is that makes ice cream acceptable but milk to be avoided, why some starches are "safe" and what the context of the word "safe" is===I would be delighted to know.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Thanks for the information. I have a very good friend who is on this diet with her husband and the swear by it. I have enough trouble with starches and sugars . I am craving on this Gluten free diet and I do not need any more sugars or fats. I have 6 pounds to loss to be at my goal weight. Thanks again
    1732 days ago
    It does not sound like one person here that has commented has actually tried the diet or bothered to read the book, including the GreasyJoan. Really? Get off you duffs and try it, read the book, do some research, pay attention. Then your comments can be taken seriously.
    1791 days ago
  • PERRY712
    A diet always sells better when written by a Doctor, even if 90% of other doctors are in disagreement with the diet's philosophy. Like Dr Atkins, Dr Oz, even Dr Phil. For the same reason people buy into the HCG diet because it is pushed by rogue doctors and chiropractors looking to make a quick buck.
    1794 days ago
    emoticon This is the first review I've read from you. It appears you have several. I'm so excited to catch up! I love your style and your wittiness.

    "...that's self-cannibalism to you and me..." emoticon
    1949 days ago
    this 'diet' sounds ridiculous. I call quacks!
    1949 days ago
    Funny, I was using low fat creamer in my coffee and found it has higher carbs than the full fat I switched..when they take the fat out of things they usually replace with sugar.
    1949 days ago
    As a nurse who has read hundreds of diet books I tend to think that the allowed foods depend on the authors own preferences. If they love chocolate then it's allowed. If they love ice cream, it's allowed.
    1950 days ago
    Milk is avoided because it has a higher percentage of carbohydrates than cream or other high fat types of dairy. That's a basic precept of low carb diets--don't drink low fat milk, tons of lactose (sugar) in it. But those 'safe' starches would put me right into a hypoglycemic coma! Yikes.
    1950 days ago
  • LISAMG1220
    Wow! Thanks for sharing. The milk idea makes NO sense at all.
    1950 days ago
    We're all complex systems, and what works for one doesn't work for others. This diet doesn't fit with my eating style, so I would avoid it personally. I've heard of fasting 16 hours/ eating 8 hours, and I've heard of limiting diets (eating for your blood type comes immediately to mind) but I've never found one that works with me. I agree, the no milk, yes ice cream framework seems a bit weird, but this diet isn't one I would do on principle, as I don't eat red meat and I lurve beans.....

    It's interesting to me the PhD factor, though-- the idea that because one has a PhD it translates to expertise in all things.

    Happy Sunday, Jo. Thank you for sharing this review-- a book not for me, but interesting nonetheless....

    1950 days ago
    Anything that tells me "to be of good cheer" immediately makes me rage....
    1950 days ago
  • -LINDA_S
    I've heard of this diet and knew about the "safe starches" but didn't know it was so wacky otherwise! I believe he has some standing in the Paleo community, or at least the part that believes in starches. I'm good with the fatty meats, but the starches would wreck me!
    1951 days ago
    I am amazed at what advise people are selling and even more amazed that people are buying it. I am glad you did not fall for it. I am not diabetic and it will be very detrimental to my health. Thanks for sharing.
    1951 days ago
    Hunh. Never heard of this diet; glad that I didn't. Thanks for the review. If I do hear something about it, I'll run the other way.
    1951 days ago
  • POPSY190
    Couldn't stomach it!
    1951 days ago
    It may work for some, but not me. I have found even the Paleo has not set with me well. In order to simplify, I have decided to follow the Wheat Belly way...feeling much better and pounds dropping once again!

    Great insights! emoticon
    1951 days ago
    Sounds like a sham to me. Just proves that people will buy any plan that calls itself a *diet*, no matter its principles.
    1951 days ago
    It sounds insane to me. People are always looking for a quick, easy way to lose weight, but it's never quick and easy. It's a long, slow process of changing food and exercise habits. It has to be sustainable, or it won't work. I couldn't sustain that diet for two days!
    1951 days ago
    He has a Ph.D. in Astrophysics and she in molecular biology as far as I can ascertain.
    1951 days ago
  • OJ_2_OK
    Wow. Seriously people believe this stuff?
    1951 days ago
    Gah, I cannot believe this--! And I'll bet you there will be people who'll tell you how wonderful this diet is, and how well it worked for them...

    The only benefit to this diet in the real world is the free publicity and the money the authors will make.

    Ph.Ds in what? Were they awarded through the doctoral program at Mickey D's Hamburger University?
    1951 days ago
    Wow. I wouldn't just be sick eventually....I'd be sick the first day.
    1951 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/19/2013 6:18:29 PM
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