Book Review: How Not to Die by Dr Michael Greger MD

Book Review: How Not to Die by Dr Michael Greger MD

With its rather dramatic title ‘How Not To Die‘ is a timeless guide to a lifetime of good health. Although there’s a lot of these dietary and nutrition books around, none are as stuffed full of scientific references and scientific evidence as this one.

In fact a whole third of the book is dedicated to scientific referencing which highlights and backs up the validity of Greger’s assertions.

Dr Greger is the founder of the world’s biggest not-for-profit nutrition organisation NutritionFacts.org. He is an American doctor and nutrition specialist who has lectured and taught all over the world.

If you only buy one book about health in your lifetime, let this be the one. How Not to Die’s scope is vast and covers all aspects of human health, disease and preventative medicine and provides an overwhelming amount of evidence about the simplest intervention possible – diet.

Greger opens up his book by talking about his grandmother. She was a woman who went through several heart bypasses and was told she would soon die by doctors. Then she switched to a plant based diet and daily exercise, and as a result she lived another 30 years.

The proof for Greger was (not) in the pudding but rather in the leafy greens. It set him on a career path in medicine and a fascination for nutrition.

Greger focuses his chapters on how not to die from some of the most common preventable, non-communicable diseases such as cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes. He talks about the scientific evidence that backs up the idea that adopting plant-based diet improves your health and dramatically reduces the likelihood of every disease under the sun.

In the second half of the book Greger talks about practical ways to improve your diet by increasing whole and organic foods and avoiding all processed foods and animal products.

Although it may seem throughout the book that he’s firmly advocating vegetarianism and veganism, Greger clarifies that:

“I advocate for an evidence-based diet, and the best available balance of science suggests that the more whole plant foods we eat, the better”

Greger talks at length about Cardiovascular disease, diabetes and also delves into other less obvious diseases that are impacted by diet – Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and depression.

I read this book while walking and listening to it on audio. My partner and I loved it so much we bought the acompanying How Not to Die Cookbook which is a great way to add plenty of flavour and nutrients to your meals.

My partner and I decided to turn vegetarian as a result of reading this book. As a result of this, we both have lost weight felt lighter and more energised and more alert than ever before. After reading Greger’s book, we also realised we weren’t missing out on anything by turning vegetarian instead we were gaining our health and prolonging our lives. This book is highly recommended, get it here

7 Comments

  1. jeremyjameshongkong

    Sounds interesting. I listened to rich roll being interviewed on Rhonda Patrick’s podcast the other day… He also makes a persuasive case for veganism. I loved valter longos ‘longevity diet’ book where he introduced the fasting mimicking diet.. Wonder how much cross over being these books… Though longo advocates reduced meat not vegetarianism from memory…

    1. Content Catnip

      Hi Jeremy thanks for that Rhonda Patrick recommendation I will try and seek it out. To be honest I wrote this post about 4 months ago and then went to Japan for 3 weeks. It was so hard to communicate the no meat thing that my boyfriend and I gave up and just ran with it. As a result we gorged ourselves on meat in Japan and hsve returned to our shameful meat eating ways…this book all but forgotten ij our house. Arrgh I shouldnt have written this! There is a lot of truth in this healthy approach though and being vegetarian was the healthiest I’ve ever felt!

      1. Content Catnip

        Yeah totally. After Japan mostly eating fish and feel much better for it. How has your weekend been so far? I hope it has been good.

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