This book gets referred to a lot in online discussions of low-carb dieting, because Taubes does an excellent job of calmly and quietly describing the history of medical research into the causes and remedies for obesity through the modern era. He makes the science very understandable, and dispassionately recounts how nutritionists and doctors went astray in the 1950s and 1960s, to the point where they are prescribing diets for the obese and/or diabetic that not only don't help, but actually make things worse. That's what got me so damn pissed off - not at Taubes or his book, but at all the God-cursed myopic BASTARDS who had the balls to describe themselves as scientists (when they deliberately shut their eyes to evidence that didn't agree with their pet theories) and doctors, when their prescribed diets led to more problems and earlier deaths for their patients. Whatever happened to "First, do no harm," you fuckers?
Especially when you read that the low-carb/ketogenic diets are not some new fad diet perpetrated by the vile, greedy Dr. Atkins (who doesn't deserve any of the abuse he routinely gets at the hands of ignorant shit-heads), but in fact used to be the standard method of treating the corpulent and chubby. Because it WORKED. Hell, Bismarck was on a low-carb diet, and he lost a healthy chunk of weight. So did my father. So have I. If you've had trouble losing weight (as I have), been through several cycles of Weight Watchers and wound up fatter than when you started (as I did), you need to read this damn book. I don't want to come across as an evangelist, but as a society, we 've been led down the wrong path by well-intentioned people who have the wrong idea about nutrition stuck in their heads and can't/won't get it out. Knowledge is power. Read this book. Get angry and change what you're eating. Lose weight without surgery or drugs. DO IT.