What is good nutrition? The answer to that question is the most important and widely discussed health-care and life-style issue of the day. Now Jane Brody has written the soundest and most comprehensive guide to nutrition yet available for the layperson. Among the many questions she answers are: Do we really need vitamin supplements? Is fast food junk food? What foods are best for our children? Is protein the vital ingredient in our diet or have carbohydrates gotten a bad press? And many, many other pertinent questions which are vital to this important issue.
An intelligent guide to coping with all the major problems of the modern American diet - complete to menus and recipes. In the distinctive style familiar to readers of her "Personal Health" column in the New York Times, Brody tackles: the newly rearranged basic food groups; "non-caloric nutrients" (such as fiber, vitamins, salt); what to drink; weight problems; considerations of each age group; and additives. She does a masterful job of sorting out our dilemma - the available food is pretty lousy, and the choice is often among the least of many evils - and then pointing us in the right, not-always-obvious direction. For example: "People lambaste 'chemicals' in our foods and overlook the fact that major nutrients like fat and sugar are actually doing the most damage." Some general principles, strategic tips, and curiosities: fiber is not an essential nutrient, so we should first attend to the basics and then see how fiber can be included in our diets; the U.S. Recommended Dally Allowances are not nutritional requirements, but rather estimates that exceed the requirements of most people; eating breakfast has repeatedly been shown to improve daily performance; athletes and vegetarians do not require outlandish diets; and, matched for weight, drinking history, and previous food intake, women get drunker than men, on less liquor. Brody includes the often-ignored "later years" in her discussion of age-group needs: according to her statistics, one third or more of the elderly in the US are malnourished for such reasons as socioeconomic problems, loneliness, depression, and physical disabilities; and she has suggestions to help. Wide-ranging, thorough, and sensible - unsurpassed as a guide for individual action. (Kirkus Reviews)