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Veganist: Lose Weight, Get Healthy, Change the World
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Veganist: Lose Weight, Get Healthy, Change the World

3.74 of 5 stars 3.74  ·  rating details  ·  1,393 ratings  ·  216 reviews
Kathy Freston wasn't born a vegan. The bestselling author and renowned wellness expert actually grew up on chicken-fried steak and cheesy grits, and loved nothing more than BBQ ribs and vanilla milkshakes. Not until her thirties did she embrace the lifestyle of a veganist--someone who eats a plant-based diet not just for their own personal well-being, but for the whole web ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Weinstein Publishing (first published 2011)
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Liseuse
I was pretty skeptical about this book. After seeing Kathy Freston on Oprah, I was worried her book would candy-coat the issue, or that it would be "vegan-light". Or that it would be all about how to eat meat substitutes or more focused on veganism as a diet or cleanse, as it was portrayed in Oprah's show.


Instead, I learned Freston is compassionate about animals, but also wanted to allow multiple entry points for people to learn that veganism (or being a "veganist") is the right way to eat and l
...more
Jonny99
A more accurate subtitle might be ”Eat Carrots, Be a God” . Parodying the promises Kathy Freston’s makes in her meat-free manifesto would defy Mark Twain. According to Freston putting away the cheeseburgers will allow you to effortlessly lose weight, cure any diseases you may have including heart disease and cancer, and literately take on a ”golden glow”. Avoiding cheese dogs will make you not only more sexually attractive but actually better at sex. She does stop short of claiming that tofu wil ...more
Keri ♠
I was thinking this was going to be a cookbook and give me ideas on how to go "veganist." I have been dealing with health issues and had been doing pretty well going vegetarian for a while--but I slipped up only after about 9 months over the holidays and gave in to eating meat again (I've stayed away from red meat for years though). I thought this book would help me with my health issues and was the big reason I decided to get this as a Kindle purchase.

Very few books have really hit me emotiona
...more
dara
Aug 03, 2013 dara added it
Shelves: read-in-2013
The introduction was very promising. Her approach seems accessible. I appreciated that she makes a point to tell readers to skip chapters and come back to them later if they are not yet ready for some of the more difficult truths, rather than discard the book entirely.

Then I actually started the book and it just wasn't what I personally wanted. The promises can be a bit grandiose though they're common in veg advocacy. For example: "You will be helping provide food to the global poor" just isn't
...more
Jill
This is one of those books that, now that I have read it, I wish I had a million copies that I could just hand out to random people I encounter throughout my days! It is JAM-PACKED with a TON of information on nutrition, the harsh realities of factory farming, health, weight management, spirituality, food-borne illness facts, and that is just to name a few. Admittedly, there are chapters of this book that are very difficult to read. If this is your first time learning about the horrific animal a ...more
Laura
This is an interesting book on nutrition surrounding a plant-based diet and the benefits of eating little to no animal product.

I did appreciate her non-extremist style and opinions, but I just can't get past the poorly supported data and ridiculous claims (walking burns more calories than running per mile. Really? Please explain.) Etc. The statistics and "savings" figures appeared unsubstantiated, although I haven't researched the sources that she does provide.

My biggest problem with this book
...more
Kat
Ugh, my phone ate my lengthy review. Reworded: I had trouble taking the "health" claims seriously when she kept advocating highly processed foods and unfermented soy without acknowledging that they are total junk food. The entire sample diet in the back of the book made me cringe. Not only is fake meat/dairy not close enough to the real thing to satisfy a meat eater making the transition, but to eat it at every single meal? Yuck. Find yourself a good vegan cookbook (like Veganomicon) and go from ...more
Tina
In Veganist, Kathy Freston makes a straightforward case for the vegan lifestyle without being judgmental. Reading about the treatment of animals was difficult, even for someone like myself who is not a hard core animal activist. She makes a great case that like humans, animals are also God’s creatures.

If the treatment of animals isn’t enough to turn you away from meat and dairy, Freston talks about the health implications for us, with both cancer and heart disease having links to animal proteins
...more
Ayla
I'd call this a "quick read" about the benefits of a vegan diet and a great intro for someone curious about why people choose to be vegan. (I borrowed this book from my friend Lori, who's been vegan for about 30 years; as a long-term vegan, Lori said she didn't gain much new knowledge from the book. One of the most impressive books on veganism that Lori has read recently and that she highly recommends is The World Peace Diet by Dr. Will Tuttle.) Kathy Freston defines "veganist" as "1. Someone wh ...more
Kate Savage
This puff piece on the benefits of the vegan diet presents scientific and anecdotal evidence to support it's claims.

There are several things that rubbed me the wrong way about this book. Yes, of course there is evidence that eating a plant-based diet is better for you. However, Freston bases her book around "promises" of what your life will be like if you adopt a vegan diet. Sure, most of them are, probably true such as weight maintenance and lowering your risk of cancer. But then she also "prom
...more
Kelsey Layos
I'm about halfway into this and have read more than enough to know what I think of the book.

This might seem like a good, accessible, and quickly-readable (but -very- shallow) overview of the issues that prompt folks to go vegan, but I take issue with it for several reasons.

First, she makes unrealistic promises about weight loss. Veganism is not a magic get-out-of-calories-free card and eating vegan will NOT guarantee you to lose weight at all, much less rapidly and effortlessly, as the author re
...more
Gregory
I had been finding myself leaning in to vegetarianism and veganism more and more and have been eating less and less meat as a general rule. So far I've let beef and chicken behind and most pork products. Still eating some bacon on occasion. But this is convincing me to let that as well as eggs go also. I'm afraid the hard one for me is going to be cheese. Having grown up on a farm and been in close contact with killing animals both domestic and wild I am feeling better by no longer subsisting on ...more
Leiah
I don't remember what made me want to read this book, but I went into it with an open mind. Besides several typos/misspelled words/grammar errors, I liked this book overall. I liked the author's "lean into change" attitude. She wasn't pressing anything on you or making you feel bad or guilty about your current lifestyle, whatever that may be.

I wasn't completely convinced with very many of the stats presented in the book; there were no footnotes citing any sources. A lot of the numbers and stats
...more
Silvia
I'm a recent vegan convert and I've been trying to informe myself as much as possible. I thought Veganist was a good starter book because it covered all elements from health, nutrition, environment, animal suffering, and spirituality. The author incorporated some stories from different individuals and medical professionals which I liked. No heavy duty epidemiological studies are portrayed here like China Study (which I also recommend), but these studies are expressed in more simplistic ways. The ...more
Lynn
I bought this book for the library thinking that it would be one that I bought and purposefully never read ... because sometimes we don't want to know too much. I haven't read Jonathan Safran Foer's "Eating Animals" and I haven't watched "Food, Inc" for those reasons.

Yet for some reason "Veganist" made it to the top of my "to read" pile and I really did enjoy it.

Kathy Freston gives the introduction that she didn't become a veganist until she was in her thirties -- she started slowly cutting dif
...more
David
Everybody who eats should read this book. Here, you can find all of the good reasons to eat a truly healthy diet; health, nutrition, avoiding illness, longer and more active life, and reducing the horrid cruelty to animals that occurs in factory farms. I was impressed by all the interviews with true experts in the field. I was also impressed by the depth into which each aspect in the areas of health is explored. I also appreciated Freston's appproach to being a vegan--you don't have to go crazy; ...more
Beth G.
With its breezy, friendly style and chapters headed with "promises" about the benefits of going vegan, this is a very appealing book. Freston sells veganism well, claiming it will make you healthier, save you money, help you lose weight "effortlessly", and help the environment, among other things. In the back matter, she suggests three weeks worth of menu plans (no recipes, and a heavy reliance on soy meat-replacement products), offers a shopping list, and points to several cookbooks and website ...more
Christa Cordova
Kathy's non-dogmatic, gentle tone made this book about veganism refreshingly approachable! I'm a new veganist and I've struggled finding the words to explain what I'm doing to my friends and family. Instead of trying, I plan to just give them copies of this book! It's a great overview of the many benefits of a vegan lifestyle, without all the dogma/stress that some books include. In particular, I really like her "lean in" approach to going vegan - I think readers will find it an easier way to ap ...more
Heidi
I really liked this book. I have been researching food in relation to health for about 9-10 months now, and I like to refresh every so often. This book talks about vegan eating from health standpoints, enviromental standpoints, animal cruelty standpoints, spiritual standpoints, ect.
I have been eating dairy free since last April, but this book has really pushed me into giving up meat as well. I am going to give it a try as of yesterday! The animal cruely stuff is really powerful.
Stella
If this book doesn't make you go vegan (ist), I don't know what will. The horrible details of animal suffering may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it needs to be said.
Although I am already sold out on the plant based whole food diet (via The China Study book), this only strenghtened my beliefs.
Moreover, this book contains a wealth of 'how to' and 'why' info all collected into many neat sub chapters.
Priscilla Matuson
As far as books promoting veganism, this one falls short. I recommend Skinny Bitch. It's entertaining, informative, and supplies the concise raw truth. Don't waste your time or money on Veganist.
Alexis
Apr 17, 2011 Alexis rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011
It's hard to read a book when you feel like kicking the author in the shin. There are better books out there on this topic.
Karen
I downloaded this audiobook from my local library and have listened to it over the past two weeks. Initially, I had kind of avoided this book. I have a hard time with the hype that surrounds appearances on Oprah. Since it was free to download, I gave it a shot. There were times I had to just shut it off and continue later because I couldn't handle it. I've seen the photos, I've watched Food, Inc and other similar videos yet I still had a hard time with hearing the realities presented here. The p ...more
Cheryl
Dear Kathy Freston:

Thank you for your research. Thank you for the graphic details about what goes on in slaughter houses and factory farms. Due to the graphic descriptions, I can not look at a piece of meat and not see it writhing around in pain. I was already a vegetarian when I started reading your book. I have seen countless documentaries, but I forget pictures and images, hence the reason I will not recall watching a movie and sit through it again. I am still hooked on eggs, and fish. Guess
...more
Leah Wescott
Wow. This lady pulls out all the stops. From her graphic descriptions of animal slaughter houses to the chapter that claims the First Testament is proof that Jesus would want us all to be vegans, I can't say that Freston trusts her readers to decide much for themselves. The use of science is sometimes solid but often inconsistent and self-serving, and her gratuitous use of adjectives makes me cringe. If a chicken is covered in poop and dropped in boiling water while still alive I can pretty much ...more
Joseph Raffetto
The Veganist evangelizes all the reasons to go vegan: lose weight; minimize your risks or prevent cancer, heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's, melanoma; save money; help the environment as well as stand against the horrible consequences and cruelty of todays factory industrial farming that have exploded exponentially in the hands of a few the past 30 years. It is not the family farm that people my age grew up with.

This book supports everything I've read in the past and more. It also backs up it
...more
Kate Lawrence
Freston has a bare bones style that in places makes the book seem like a website, minus any graphics, put between book covers. For example, interviews with experts like T. Colin Campbell and Neal Barnard are reprinted word-for-word as transcripts, rather than written up like book chapters. Healing stories from individuals, and accounts of factory farm undercover work by activists, are included verbatim like blog posts, as though Freston put their submissions in whole, with perhaps minimal editin ...more
Keith Madsen
This is an important book to read, as it challenges the predominant ideas most of us have about what is healthy eating, and it also calls us to think through our ethical obligations toward the animals we raise as food. Kathy Freston also comes at the topic from a spiritual perspective, and I found that at least thought-provoking.

After reading this book, which I did at the request of my vegan wife, I have moved away from eating meats, except for fish (prefering fresh, line-caught) and free-range
...more
Kalin
Freston supports much of what I've learned in biology, along with my personal experience from shifting in food patterns. She boldly expresses her thoughts on animal agriculture -- though an opinion that has been accepted by many individuals, organizations and religious leaders, it is one that is laughed at and criticized by most. The United Nations report that she often quotes is well worth the read, for those who are interested in learning more about how detrimental animal agriculture is to our ...more
Lauren
Nov 14, 2013 Lauren rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: vegans who cannot express why they are vegan
"Who's the audience?" I ask in my best Maddie Hayes impression. This book presents a conundrum of sorts: This book is best meant to convert people to the lifestyle, but a name like "veganist" is only going to attract people who already believe in the lifestyle or are already sympathetic. In the rare instance it attracts the curious, it may be very understandable but it is far too preachy; the entire book is an argument for veganism and not the best one at that.

Some might find it a good thing tha
...more
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Kathy Freston is a New York Times best-selling author with a concentration on healthy living and conscious eating. Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dr. Dean Ornish penned the introductions for two of her books and her work has garnered accolades from such respected names as Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Neal Barnard, Marianne Williamson
and Dr. Deepak Chopra.

Freston has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Ellen, The Dr.
...more
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“You know you are addicted to a food if despite knowing it is bad for you and despite wanting to change, you still keep eating it. Addiction means that a craving has more control over your behavior than you do.” 8 likes
“American Dietetic Association (ADA) surveyed all the studies on food and health, they concluded not just that a vegetarian or vegan diet is as healthy as one that includes meat, but that “vegetarians have been reported to have lower body mass indices than non-vegetarians, as well as lower rates of death from ischemic heart disease, lower blood cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure, and lower rates of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and prostate and colon cancer.” 0 likes
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