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The Starch Solution: Eat the Foods You Love, Regain Your Health, and Lose the Weight for Good!

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  3,503 ratings  ·  285 reviews
A bestselling author’s groundbreaking eating plan that challenges the notion that starch is unhealthy

From Atkins to Dukan, the fear-mongering about carbs over the past few decades has reached a fever pitch; the mere mention of a starch-heavy food is enough to trigger a cavalcade of shame and longing.

In The Starch Solution, bestselling diet doctor and board-certified intern
Hardcover, 348 pages
Published May 8th 2012 by Rodale Books
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Almudena There is no real issue. Starches are complex carbohydrates and that is what he recommends as the centre of a healthy diet.

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 ·  3,503 ratings  ·  285 reviews

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May 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: People interested in being healthy
I have trouble not giving five stars to well researched nutrition books that go against profits and are geared towards giving accurate information. I have always had respect for Dr. McDougall but this is the first book of his that I have read and I devoured it in less than a day. It is very well organized and easy to follow.

On October 1, 2007 I went vegetarian and October 1, 2008 I went vegan. Then about a year and a half or more ago I followed what Dr. Esselstyn said and cut out added oil, cut
It's about time I've read a book by Dr. McDougall. I've been hearing about him and seeing random tidbits from him here and there ever since I went vegan five years ago. This book just might be a life-changer for me. Even though I have never bought into low-carb diets and would always defend healthy carbs in whole grains, beans, fruits, and vegetables, I still held onto some carb-phobia, thinking I needed more fat and more protein to be healthy and satisfied. Now once and for all, I am convinced ...more
Jun 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Most important: do not just skip to the recipes in this book! As good as they are, I believe it's important to read and understand the detailed information on the basic building blocks of nutrition and the even more essential information on the health benefits and dangers of individual food types.

I bought and read the first McDougall book many years ago, in the 1980s. At that time I read it straight through and followed the plan for a while. Unfortunately I slid away from the basics and my healt
Apr 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nutrition, health
This book contains a lifestyle diet. It is very well written, complete yet not technical, with references to peer-reviewed articles. This is basically the same diet as recommended by "The China Study", The Engine 2 Diet: The Texas Firefighter's 28-Day Save-Your-Life Plan that Lowers Cholesterol and Burns Away the Pounds, and "Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease".

While modern medicine is excellent for curing contagious diseases, it fails miserably against the so-called chronic diseases of the affl
Pax Gethen
May 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Solid health advice from a medical doctor with decades of experience using a starch-centered, low-fat vegan diet to help people improve their health. Not a lot of new information for me since I've read most of the author's previous books and monthly newsletter, but I do enjoy McDougall's writing style, and the fact that he backs up his recommendations with references in published, peer-reviewed medical journals. Mary McDougall's recipes are great too.
May 26, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: food-issues
One of my colleagues recommended this book, as following the diet has helped her child with an autoimmune condition. Although I'm glad it helped her child, this is not for me. A couple of things I didn't like about the writing: first, McDougall cites confounding lifestyle factors when a study disagrees with his philosophy, but he completely ignores them when it it convenient to do so; second, he claims absolute, incontrovertible evidence of causation (good and bad) in studies that show only corr ...more
Nov 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Yes! I was already doing most of the things Dr. McDougall recommends in this book, but how satisfying to read all the science behind why it is good for me and why I can continue to eat rice, potatoes, and pasta with veggies and salsa as much as I want, whenever I want.
Oct 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A comprehensive, detailed and top notch review of all nutritional myths. This book as others I've read is an eye opener. A lot of my information was corrected, not only that but he support whatever he is saying with evidence. It's not his opinion.

I think this book would change your life, no matter if you are sick, obese or not. It will give the information needed to change your ways with food.

It worth every minute you spend reading. So don't waste your time and start reading.
May 20, 2014 rated it did not like it
Study cherry-picking, agenda-selling piece of propaganda.
Renée Paule
Nov 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The man's a rare genius and makes more sense than I've heard in a long time. Highly recommended for everyone.
Apr 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This really works, folks! I have been vegetarian for 7 years. This book gave me permission to eat starches I had been avoiding out of habit from my dieting days. Dr. McDougall's explanation about the importance of starches makes total sense, and the recipes are good too. McDougall is the only doctor I really trust to put people's health ahead of profit. Check out his website for free information on almost any health topic.
Kate Merriman
Dec 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: vim
The best-researched book on nutrition I've ever had the good fortune to get in my hands!!

I cannot recommend this highly enough.
Aug 24, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, 2015
I have two significant problems with this book. That said, I'm here for the recipes.

First, the guy comes across as a pompous ass. His condescending pity for people who are not "thin and beautiful" is offensive. Indeed, one of his section titles is "Where have all the thin and beautiful people gone?"

Second, all major diseases are blamed on weight. This latter completely disregards the plethora of medical research coming out that is linking inflammation to many of these major diseases - heart dis
ضحى الحداد
Jul 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
ah, what is a better way than reading about health during my darkest hours of sickness ?
being a vegan since 2013 I've been through a lot of hardships socially and emotionally, and reading this book shed some light at some issues I had questions about for a while and this book was very well researched and contained a ton of useful information for me and I think people should read it to at least know what is going on with their health
I was a bit confused as some researches weren't that convincin
Nov 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I reluctantly agreed to try the Starch Solution when my doctor recommended it... I never, ever, ever voluntarily ate vegetables until I was well into adulthood. With much dismay, I discovered that I NEVER felt better than I do following this lifestyle plan. And I am even more pleased that the McDougall's believe in what the preach so much that they've made it available, without cost, to everyone on their website. Bravo to them, to everyone who follows them and even to me for climbing on board :)
Jan 06, 2017 rated it liked it
I love the recipes in the back of this book, but most of this book has to be taken with a grain of salt. Yes carbs are good, yes fat is bad, but the fat you eat is NOT the fat you wear. Of course that goes for people who eat only animal fatty food, but our bodies need fat. Our brain needs it. So yes, some parts were true but other parts were huge exaggerations.
David Kerschner
May 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'm generally very skeptical of books like this. However, Dr. McDougal cites the majority of things he says. Well put together, convinced me to become vegan. I hesitate to recommend this sort of book, but I think everyone should read it.
Sep 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2017
super informative! now i feel the urge to eat ALL THE POTATOES and further my veganism~~
Dec 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
First of all: I do strongly believe that a vegan diet has tons of health benefits and (apart from obviously being good for the environement)can be a solution to many health problems. I've been following a vegan diet for almost five years now, however I do have a problem with vegans saying things like "meat and milk cause cancer etc.". It's not just Dr. McDougall but generally people from the vegan society who tend to repeat that sentence over and over again. I do believe it is true BUT only if y ...more
G.R. Hewitt
This is an easy to read and understand book that challenges many long held ideas in the field of diet and nutrition. This is a lifestyle-change book rather than a diet book and I think the most compelling aspect of it is that Dr Mcdougall 'eats his own words' as it were. If ever there was a case of 'Physician heal thyself' this is it - because he did and may do the same for others seeking to "Eat the Foods You Love, Regain Your Health, and Lose the Weight for Good!"
Sep 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
This is just another "you have to immediately switch over and stick to this ridiculously impossible restricted diet" book. Here's all the science why I'm right. Become a vegan, but also no oil in your diet. Then you will be magically healthy. And look at all the people who lost weight on this diet. And if you don't, you'll die. All the other diets are wrong because they ignored all these things I'm telling you. AND if you want to maximize weight-loss, here's the way to make it EVEN HARDER. Ha Ha ...more
May 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Stop fearing carbs people!.Excellent book. Lots of great information from Dr McDougall. I have been loosely following the starch solution for a while and have read a lot of previous books, articles by, and have watched many videos of Dr McDougall. What he has to say really resonates with me. I picked up the book..finally, because I decided to dive into the starch solution some more, since being diagnosed with cancer. I know how well it makes me feel when I do follow it, and I want something to h ...more
Aug 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
I am a strong believer in Dr. McDougall's message that eating a plant-strong, vegan diet will save your life. I highly recommend this book for not only the science behind it, but also for the great recipes. I have made many of them and my family has enjoyed them all.
Jan 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Legit read this in 2 days because I'm obsessed with all things about the WFPB diet lately.

So I've been researching more and more about the Whole Food Plant Based diet (or lifestyle if you will). I started with a documentary on Netflix when I was bored one day (Forks Over Knives) which really got me thinking. Then I went to YouTube and binge watched people making recipes and talk about their results. I came across a YouTuber, Plantiful Kiki, who lost 66 lbs and gained her health back by eating mo
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This just made so much sense!!
May 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Fascinating read, this book was very well written, flowed well. I did not read this book because I wanted to lose weight, but am interested in books on health and the many different perspectives that are out there. Whether you agree with this type of diet or not the author provides plenty of examples on why certain things are not good for you and why you should attempt to cut them out, not just for a healthier you, but for a healthier planet as well.

I really enjoyed reading how this doctor appe
Jul 17, 2017 rated it it was ok
Wanted to start to educate myself a bit more on nutrition, ended up reading some well regarded American fad diet propaganda.

The first warning sign was the author's insistence on branding everything from canned soups to successful dieters. I wouldn't ever trust somebody who wants his name on everything.

Secondly, I disliked how selective the information provided was, e.g. Referring to Asian cuisine as the ultimate healthy one because rice, but ignoring their love for fish. He fails to mention any
Aug 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book covers so much more than weight loss and using starchy foods to achieved it. The author covers so very much in regards to nutrition, plant based eating, the effects on the environment and your body from eating animal products, etc. The writing style is fluid and I found myself reading this book within 2 days. I especially liked the inclusion of testimonials from people who have followed the author's suggestions, plus his own personal stories about his health and eating habits as a chil ...more
Apr 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book is straightforward and super easy to read. It goes into just enough detail and if you want more detail or information the studies and in the back so you can search them up on the Internet or library and you can use his website as well. I am definitely going cut my fat and protein down from overt fats and fake meats after reading this and see how I feel. I've been vegan for 3 years but I have always eaten a lot of fats and had bad skin even as a vegan so this makes sense and I'll see if ...more
Kate Singh
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
I skimmed this book as I have read a few of these similar reads. I read The China Study and this book just backs up the fact that the older Asian generations, or small Island, African...that eat how they traditionally ate before American foods intruded on their shores, are healthy and vital into their old age whereas their grandchildren living on the processed, sugar, meat, and dairy-laden foods are very sick.

It's a good book for those who have bought into the belief that potatoes and rice are
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John A. McDougall is an American Irish physician and author whose philosophy is that degenerative disease can be prevented and treated with a low-fat, whole foods, plant-based/vegan diet – especially one based on starches such as potatoes, rice, and corn – which excludes all animal foods and added vegetable oils.

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“FRENCH TOAST I like to cook up a batch, then refrigerate or freeze individual slices in zip-top bags. A quick heating in the toaster or microwave oven and breakfast is ready. Substitute a tablespoon of brown sugar for the dates if you wish. The turmeric is for color; if you don’t have it, just leave it out. PREP: 10 MINUTES | COOK: 15 MINUTES • MAKES 12 SLICES 2 cups Cashew Milk 3 tablespoons chopped, pitted dates 1⁄8 teaspoon ground cinnamon Dash of ground turmeric 12 slices whole wheat bread Pure maple syrup, fruit sauce, or fruit spread, for serving Process 1 cup of the Cashew Milk and the dates, cinnamon, and turmeric in a blender until smooth. Add the remaining 1 cup Cashew Milk and blend a few more moments. Pour the mixture into a bowl and dip slices of bread in it, one at a time, coating them well. Heat a nonstick griddle or skillet over medium heat. Cook as many slices as your pan will handle at a time, turning until both sides are evenly browned. Serve warm with toppings of your choice.” 3 likes
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