T. Colin Campbell is co-author of the The China Study, published in 2005. The China Study became an international best seller, and continues to be a 'must read' about vegetarian diet and health.
In his recently published book ‘Whole, Rethinking the Science of Nutrition', Campbell talks about an issue that has bothered me for years, and his explanations (exposé really) didn't make me any happier.
But it did make me feel that I am on to something with my Whole Food Plant Based diet, which I hope will continue to keep me out of the clutches of conventional medicine. Been there, done that, didn't care for the experience.
It takes T. Colin Campbell nineteen chapters to tell us that it's all about the money. The drug companies run the American health care system for the financial benefit of the drug companies. The medical researchers, doctors and hospitals follow along. And everybody else loses.
T. Colin Campbell says "We talk about the health-care system in America, but that's a misnomer; what we really have is a disease-care system", which he explains in horrifying detail.
We kind of know all this if we're the sort to question the established order. I admit to being a little vague on the details in the past. But not anymore!
Whole is an eye-opening trip from first page to last, starting with the three sections of the book: Enslaved by the System, on through Paradigm as Prison, then Subtle Power and its Wielders.
Chapter headings such as The Modern Health Care Myth, Reductionism Invades Nutrition, Genetics Versus Nutrition (that was a shocker), the sinister Reductionist Social Policy, Industry Exploitation and Control, and Government Misinformation clearly outline the message of this book. But don't just scan the headlines, read the bits in between to get the full impact.
For me, the most eye opening bits have to do with medical research, as in cures for cancer and the like, not happening except on what is regarded as the lunatic fringe of quacks and charlatans. How dare they even think about curing cancer!
Campbell shows us his own Heretical Path from reductionist nutrition researcher at Cornell University to writing books about healing disease with WFPB diet. It's a fascinating journey, and I'm sure that there were many times that he had to choose between telling the truth and taking the money. Lucky for us, he's honest.
Campbell asks "How healthy is the Whole Food Plant Based diet? It's hard to imagine anything healthier - or anything more effective at addressing our biggest health issues...if the WFPB diet were a pill, its inventor would be the wealthiest person on earth. Since it isn't a pill and nobody has figured out how to get wealthy by showing people how to eat it, the truth has been buried..."
According to Campbell, there will be no cures for cancer or anything else as long as medical research, medicine and nutrition take a reductionist rather than a wholistic approach to health.
Case in point, the RDI (recommended daily intake): "the ultimate in reductionist nutrition...RDIs do a wonderful job of confusing the American public by appearing to be scientific while diverting attention from the simple truths about which foods support our health and which degrade it."
So what can we do to change things? T. Colin Campbell has learned over his years of battle that you can't change things from the top down.
In the last chapter, Making Ourselves Whole, he says "It's time for...a real revolution...one that begins by challenging our individual beliefs and changing our diets, and ends with the transformation of our society as a whole."
As someone who has faced all of the challenges and obstacles in the way of such a transformation for over 50 years, T. Colin Campbell could easily be tired and cynical. Instead his picture on the back cover of this book shows him looking healthy, energetic and cheerful. Do you suppose it could have something to do with his diet?
I highly recommend Whole: Rethinking the Science of Nutrition.
Judith Kingsbury, Savvy Vegetarian