The China Study

What to eat or not to eat, that is the question.

Medical Author: Charles P. Davis, MD, PhD
Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

A few weeks ago, a doctor who works at the same hospital where I practice came by to say hello, and I noticed he had lost some weight. When I inquired about his weight loss, he said that he had decided to do something to get rid of the extra pounds, but when I asked him what he was doing, he seemed a little hesitant to discuss what he had done. This is one of the worst things to tell someone like me because I'm kind of curious about all things I can't easily explain. How does a highly conservative doctor (yes, I'm also a little judgmental) make such an effective and rapid change in weight...and why did I feel like I was prying the method(s) out of him? He knows me well enough to say that I'm kind of a data addict and that I respect efforts that attempt to prove points by evidence-based information, so instead of telling me outright what he did, he referred me to a book (he even gave me a copy, perhaps because I'm also cheap) and said I needed to read it if I wanted to find out what he did and was continuing to do. I was hooked.

The book was one I would never choose to read on my own. The title was unattractive to me, and the purported subject matter was one that I have had little interest in exploring. Perhaps because as a medical doctor, I and many others have experienced little or no training in the subject and most of us consider the information about the subject as the purview of other professionals. The book is titled The China Study, and it was written by T. C. Campbell and T. M. Campbell. Its subject is nutrition, the subject matter best left to professional nutritionists, in the opinion of myself and many others...so I thought.