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Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It | [Gary Taubes]

Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It

Building upon this critical work in Good Calories, Bad Calories and presenting fresh evidence for his claim, Taubes now revisits the urgent question of what’s making us fat—and how we can change—in this exciting new book. Persuasive, straightforward, and practical, Why We Get Fat makes Taubes’s crucial argument newly accessible to a wider audience.
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Publisher's Summary

An eye-opening, myth-shattering examination of what makes us fat, from acclaimed science writer Gary Taubes.

In his New York Times best seller, Good Calories, Bad Calories, Taubes argued that our diet’s overemphasis on certain kinds of carbohydrates—not fats and not simply excess calories—has led directly to the obesity epidemic we face today. The result of thorough research, keen insight, and unassailable common sense, Good Calories, Bad Calories immediately stirred controversy and acclaim among academics, journalists, and writers alike. Michael Pollan heralded it as “a vitally important book, destined to change the way we think about food.”

Building upon this critical work in Good Calories, Bad Calories and presenting fresh evidence for his claim, Taubes now revisits the urgent question of what’s making us fat—and how we can change—in this exciting new book. Persuasive, straightforward, and practical, Why We Get Fat makes Taubes’s crucial argument newly accessible to a wider audience.

Taubes reveals the bad nutritional science of the last century, none more damaging or misguided than the “calories-in, calories-out” model of why we get fat, and the good science that has been ignored, especially regarding insulin’s regulation of our fat tissue. He also answers the most persistent questions: Why are some people thin and others fat? What roles do exercise and genetics play in our weight? What foods should we eat, and what foods should we avoid?

Packed with essential information and concluding with an easy-to-follow diet, Why We Get Fat is an invaluable key in our understanding of an international epidemic and a guide to what each of us can do about it.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

©2010 Gary Taubes (P)2010 Random House

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  •  
    Virginia Plantation, FL, United States 08-05-11
    Virginia Plantation, FL, United States 08-05-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "Excellent read!"

    This is one of the most basic, informative, enlightening books I have ever read on the topic of weight and weigh loss. An excellent presentation.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roberto SAN PEDRO GARZA GARCIA, Mexico 07-19-11
    Roberto SAN PEDRO GARZA GARCIA, Mexico 07-19-11 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "It worked for me!"

    I lost 20 pounds in two months following Gary's recommendations. I feel great and most of my ills are gone. My BMI is currently 25.9 down from 29.2 People say I look 10 years younger other more than that. Great book! Thanks!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gabriel Medford, MA, United States 05-27-11
    Gabriel Medford, MA, United States 05-27-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "after reading this book"

    all I want to do is buy 10+ copies to give it out to all my friends/relatives because it shatters the preconceived notions of what causes weight gain and thus what not to eat to be healthy

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robyn Hayden, ID, United States 05-26-11
    Robyn Hayden, ID, United States 05-26-11 Member Since 2013

    Full time Mother of 3, part time emergency physician, avid cyclist. Active in community and schools. Living in a small town in the Northwest

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Compelling, shatters nutritional "traditions""

    A well-documented, well researched systematic debunking of the common wisdom: "Eating fat makes you fat". By the end of the book, you realize the jump from learning fat clogging arteries (which cause heart attacks and strokes) must be caused by dietary fat is just as nonsensical as if we believed "eating wrinkled food like prunes or rasins will make you age and wrinkle faster". There is just no neurohormonal evidence behind the low fat craze, and our unrestricted carbs are creating the obesity epidemic we have today. Prepare to think of obesity as truly malnutrition, more common in the poor, and understand why. The audio format is excellent because you can't skip any of the supporting evidence, you hear it all and it is very compelling.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan Las Vegas, NV, United States 05-02-11
    Jan Las Vegas, NV, United States 05-02-11 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "I don't want to be fat"

    This is a great book that presents the reason why we get fat and then provides the solution.

    This is not magic potion, it will require will power and a change of lifestyle, however - IT WORKS.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan 04-10-11
    Jan 04-10-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellant topic"

    This is almost a text book. The author sites research in detail and finally 2/3rds into the book reveals why the world is getting fatter. Highly recommend this book. Provides a great education.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeremy 04-06-11
    Jeremy 04-06-11 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great info, easy to listen to."

    I enjoyed the balance between applicable information as well as the science behind the book. As someone who will most likely never find the time to read "Good Calories Bad Calories", this brief but thorough book was just what I wanted.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Justin Brampton, Ontario, Canada 03-31-11
    Justin Brampton, Ontario, Canada 03-31-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Changed My Life"

    So far i'm down 13 pounds in just over a week. Losing weight when you don't have to starve yourself makes all the difference in the world. I guess I won't know for awhile if their are any side effects from eating a high fat diet, but I know what the side effects of being over weight are and i'm sick of it. If you were like me, eating a low fat and not getting results, you owe it to yourself to check out this book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Lees Summit, MO, United States 03-14-11
    Kevin Lees Summit, MO, United States 03-14-11 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great book, written and read"

    I just finished this book after just a few days, and since I started it I've changed to a low-carb diet. In just 4 days, I've lost about 5 pounds! This book isn't a diet book per se, but it does give you reasons on why you should change your diet to be more healthy. Before reading this, I honestly didn't know that the bread and pastries I so loved were what gave me my gut. Now I know and I've cut them out of my diet, and I'm already feeling MUCH better! Read it. Believe it. Follow it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bimal San Jose, CA, United States 02-28-11
    Bimal San Jose, CA, United States 02-28-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent book"

    good content. neat narration. holds your attention till the end despite so much statistics and endocrinology.
    Must listen.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
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  • M. Campbell
    Glasgow, Scotland
    9/9/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Real Eye Opener"
    What made the experience of listening to Why We Get Fat the most enjoyable?

    For me, a 5'5" male, my life has been spent around the 14-16st mark. I can't remember the last time I wasn't on some sort of eating/exercise plan, my life has been dedicated to it. I've tried them all and stuck to them rigidly and most have been successful in losing me 2st here and there but when it came to keeping it off then that's where the real problems lay.

    Eventually I got it into my head that only a sensible, varied and healthy diet would work for me as a way to gradually over the space of a couple of years lose the weight. Unfortunately this too did not work. Something just wasn't adding up. I went to the docs to have my thyroid checked, results came back normal.

    Now I'm not one for giving into anything but as far as losing and keeping off the extra 4-5st I'm carrying, I felt it was a pipe dream. I prayed for an answer and the next day this book popped up as a suggestion in my Audible account so I thought why not!

    Along with trying all the diets I've ever been on, including Atkins, I have also read numerous books and even college courses on nutrition and exercise and have a pretty good knowledge of what constitutes a healthy lifestyle but this book takes all that mainstream knowledge and blows it out of the water, however, things make complete sense to me now. I mentioned I had already tried Atkins which obviously failed in the past but the big difference now is that I understand the science behind it and trust me, it makes a huge difference.

    Apologies for the long, self-indulgent intro. I'm simply trying to capture anyone reading this who is in the same situation. If you genuinely feel you have tried to lose weight, you've explored all the emotional and physical aspects and they don't apply, but no matter how hard you try to follow dietary advice it doesn't work then I definitely feel this could be your answer. It might not actually be your fault after all!

    Bottom line is that carbohydrates, especially sugars, are responsible for why a lot of us are so fat, well technically it's our hormones ability to regulate and distribute them. And don't even get me started on the claimed health benefits, if even half of them are true the medical establishment should be hugely ashamed of their ignorance on this subject.

    Don't get me wrong, for those who think "yeah, that's me" it means making a choice, what do I want more, sugary and starchy foods or to be thin and healthy? For me, I crossed that line long ago. I've started out with minimum carbs, <20g per day. It's been 3 weeks and I've shifted 11bs and dropped almost two shirt sizes, I'm eating more than I have in a long time and genuinely feel good. The reason I know I will keep this going is I now look at food completely differently and it's all thanks to this book. I finally have the answers I have been looking for.

    I'm now on another book, living low carb by Jonny Bowden, which is a great follow up to this book. Once completed I'll review this too.

    Seriously, I really hope this book could be the answer you have been looking for too.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sam Feltham
    London, United Kingdom
    8/11/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The Most Important Book Ever Written On Diet"

    Gary Taubes exposes the most outrageous thing to ever happen in modern science. Once you listen to this book you will understand why we have the current dietary advice, why it;s wrong and what the correct advice actually is to be slim and healthy :)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lesley
    CHARD, United Kingdom
    7/8/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Change your whole idea of eating healthly"
    What made the experience of listening to Why We Get Fat the most enjoyable?

    This was really interesting, understanding the whys of why we should or should not eat things, how your digestion works, makes slimming or just eating healthier easier. This changed my whole outlook on food, is easy to follow and I feel so much better for following it. It also reduces risk of diabetes and cholesterol levels. Eat as much as you want but just ensure they are the right things. Turns everything I understood before on its head. Eat fat and get slim!!!!!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Non fiction


    What three words best describe Mike Chamberlain’s voice?

    Not the best, but I got used to it and was interested in the content


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No you need to dip in and out, work out how you best use the information before going on to the next. In usual American style, lots of things are repeated but it is not to bad in this as there are some technical things which you need to understand.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fab
    Dundas, Australia
    5/2/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Evidence based nutrition advice? Tick!"

    Finally a book about nutrition capable of explaining some fundamental scientific concepts easily. The book is to be commended for the evidence it presents in support of the many concepts put forward. Over the last three months I have followed the advice of this book to adjust my nutrition and have already achieved significant results.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • J.L.W.B
    London
    4/7/13
    Overall
    "Really informative and helpful. However..."

    Really informative book. I learned a lot of new stuff.



    However, there is so much information here and so much of it is quite technical- easily explained here but still quite in-depth that it's hard to comprehend everything.



    I found the narrator easy enough to follow, but not so easy to follow I could describe it as bedside listening, you need to be fully awake and aware when listening as it's easy to fall out of the loop and misunderstand entire chapters. I think it does at times sound a bit monotone and narrated rather then enacted or given more force- don't get me wrong, I've heard far far worse and some books are so terribly digitised they are inaudible but there are still ways which this book could have been improved on the reading out-loud side.



    I think the price is very expensive- you can pick up the book for far less and actually with all it's technical stuff (for want of a better word) I think it may be easier to read this yourself then to have it read to you- unless your going to sit with a note-book to take down all the relevant information as it's easy to have all these facts and figures ride straight over your head.



    A good book though- a great book and well worth a read or listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Suz
    Offord Cluny, United Kingdom
    12/31/12
    Overall
    "the best most informative read of your life!"

    This thorough account of the influence of carbohydrates on your body is fully backed by science. It is just the right level of biological explanation to fully appreciate why carbs are so bad for you. Well done Gary for bringing this complex subject to the masses. Anyone who takes this information on board can only benefit from a longer more fulfilling life. Thank you and thanks to Paul Thurrott and Leo Lapport for recommending it 12 months ago.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sue Ellen
    UK
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Life changing"

    I bought this book as a complete contrast to my usual genre. I listened to it on holiday over a couple of days whilst relaxing by the pool! I loved it and despite the scientific terms I found the information easy to understand and very informative. I listen to it regularly in the car to and from work to keep me on track at meal times. I am pleased with my weight loss progress and defintely feel healthier thanks to this audio book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Andrew R
    London
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Very informative"

    If you've ever wondered whether low fat diets are as healthy as they're supposed to be, listen to this book - you won't regret it... although it might make you change what you eat.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • MR
    London, United Kingdom
    8/21/12
    Overall
    "Superb"

    If you are interested in losing weight this is the best. you will never think about carbohydrates the same again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Clare
    Appeville, France
    6/6/12
    Overall
    "Very interesting!"

    I am definately going to try this out. I remember as a child, the whole debut of the diet "thing" was about carbs then, perhaps revisiting this theory is long overdue. I grew up on eggs, bacon, lard, meat, butter - but also lots of potatoes. Not very much fruit, only in season & limited on price & availability. It will be very interesting to see if this works, nothing else has! Caveperson here I come!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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