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Publisher's Summary

Within the last few decades, several obesity-reducing low carbohydrate diets have come to the public's attention. What few realize is that these are all the grandchildren in thought to William Banting, an undertaker who, in 1864, wrote one short book that launched the first incredibly popular diet for obesity. Banting was immortalized by having his name enter the English language as a verb. Three examples include an Irishman, Captain Boycott, whose name entered the language in the 1860s. Another was Louis Pasteur, and the third was William Banting, a man who came to have a great impact on many peoples' lives and waistlines....

To this day, to bant (as a verb), or to engage in "banting" is built into the language in many countries, including the UK, South Africa, and Sweden. It can be hard to see where one is going without a sense of context of history, and this applies to dietary advice as it does with all matters.

Listen to the original pamphlet that started it all, and hear Banting's takes on corpulence and obesity, some early history of fat shaming, why he was in favor of before and after pictures, and his altercations with the medical authorities of the 1860s.

Public Domain (P)2015 Adam B. Crafter

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  • Slim
  • Lexington, Virginia
  • 03-04-16

Cool

I like it

"I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via AudiobookBlast dot com

20 of 20 people found this review helpful

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A glimpse into another time

What did you love best about Letter on Corpulence?

This is not just a diet book, it is a historical gem. It was not that long ago that legitimate doctors treated intestinal problems by "washing out my ears, and scorching them". Banting changed his life by changing his diet, something highly frowned upon then - and he was a brave man to want to share his discovery with the world, and to make the effort to do so.

What about Adam B. Crafter’s performance did you like?

For me, possibly the best part of this audio book was Mr. Crafter's performance. I have a copy of the tract, and have read it many times, but Mr. Crafters elegant diction and pleasant voice brought a depth to it I had not found before. It is especially noticeable when Banting describes things that would be common in his era, but aren't generally known now: I would normally skim over descriptions of things like "Rusk" , but this reading made me curious enough to look it up. I only wish Banting had mentioned what was in his "morning elixir"!<br/>Well done, Mr. Crafter.

Any additional comments?

All in all, this is a moment in time, captured beautifully and fully. Things like this are too often lost... I'm glad this one wasn't.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Benefits of Low Carb

One man's fight against obesity, told in such a way that I want to go try it right now. A good story read in a compelling voice. I will listen again.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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A Window on Correspondence through Time

If you could sum up Letter on Corpulence in three words, what would they be?

Eloquent Diet Record

What was one of the most memorable moments of Letter on Corpulence?

The descriptions of Banting's diet and the surprising luxury of low-carb eating stands out equally with his frustration at being unable to find a working way to regain his health through weight loss. From a foodie perspective, the observations of regular eating across time is enlightening as much as enticing, a reminder of the functional and enjoyable nature of low-carb eating.

What does Adam B. Crafter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Mr. Crafter reads the professional voice of the past in a way that casts all the more stark relief on the lack of eloquence in modern communication. If I were reading the antiquated diction on my own and not listening to Mr. Crafter's reading, I would have missed a lot of the humanity in the words just through lack of familiarity with the style. Mr. Crafter's reading enforces both the professionalism of the author and the humanity of his words, his struggle to find a solution to a lifelong problem.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

The work itself is a callback to communication before "and then I was like, and he was like -" storytelling. The record of professional but personal communication takes the listener back in the ages, and made me think about the way I dictate my own stories, the way we all tell each other our own tales today.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A moving story, still relevant today

Any additional comments?

Banting wrote and distributed this letter, basically at cost, as a public service, because his health was so completely and easily transformed by the low carb diet, that he wanted to share his success with the many other sufferers of obesity.<br/><br/>As the first low carb testimonial, it speaks volumes, and because it is a personal story, Crafter's narration shines and brings it to life.<br/><br/>Like many of us today, Banting tried other methods in vain. He tried numerous of the recommended cures of the day, but it was 30 years before he hit upon a low carb diet. The chronicling of these attempts holds such familiar crushed hope, that it would be painful, if not for the happy eventual result.<br/><br/>I particularly liked the insight, still little appreciated today, that healthful as intense physical exercise may be, it is not fat reducing in and of itself.<br/><br/>All in all, a great pleasure to listen to, for content and performance.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Wth

This is a lecture about obesity and the shamfulll way way to live.
This was the most hurtful way to act.
The woman who spoke was large herself. I donor recommend this book

0 of 3 people found this review helpful