Jess Parsons

Jess Parsons

Posted August 8, 2012

Published in Health

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Dr McDougall's Starch Solution - What's in it for you?

Read More: dietary guidelines, diseases of affluence, dr t colin campbell, environmental plant-based, fat, lani muelrab12, salt, starch, sugar, supplements, weight-loss

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Dr McDougall's gift is that diet no longer seems controversial. You can picture ol' Doc McDougall offering you a bucket of chicken wings, saying, "Do you feel lucky?"

Well? Do you?

If you haven't already discovered Dr McDougall, The Starch Solution is this dietary medical pioneer's most complete and compelling work yet. Dr McDougall has the medical training plus decades of comprehensive references and real-life successes to make other food choices seem just a little dangerous.

 If you're already a McDougaller, look no further to find out what his latest book has for you.

In Lani Muelrath's recent Teleclass with Dr McDougall, he said this might be his last book. "If you haven't got it by now..."

Getting the book

A new book? What to do? I'm in deep decluttering mode, and I already have his 12 Days to Dynamic Health and A Challenging Second Opinion.

So I perform a public service and request that our city library order The Starch Solution for Auckland, New Zealand. As an extra bonus, I get to be the first to read it.

As another public service for all you McDougall converts wondering what's in it for you - here's:

12 Days to Dynamic Health vs Starch Solution
12 Days
Starch Solution
History History

McDougall's personal medical history, with illness leading him to medical study.

When he finds he cannot make his patients better, he moves toward on dietary therapies instead of conventional drugs, and starts St Helena live-in program.

Same history with a few added extras.

The fascinating story of the years in between: why McDougall left St Helena and successfully struck out on his own.

McDougall comes out as a political activist.

Food Overview Food Overview
Nutritional building blocks and dispelling food myths - comprehensive.

Starches and why we should eat them - includes reader testimonial for this simpler approach.

Poisons in animal foods

Food FAQ chapters: Protein, Calcium, Omegas (Fish)

Dietary Guidelines and Politics Dietary Guidelines and Politics
No specific section History of the USDA and what has influenced the guidelines.
Environmental concerns
Environmental concerns
None "We are eating the planet to death" chapter - summary of latest consensus of livestock impact on the environment
Success Stories Success Stories
Sam and Sally Waterman - in depth look at their 12 days of success. Very personal and moving.
 About 10 inspirational Star McDougaller stories - longterm achievements
McDougall eats some meat every year to avoid the negative vegetarian label.

References to environmental impact of veg*nism

Fat Vegan chapter - junk food veganism, dangers of isolated soy proteins in replacement meats/milks, recommendations for healthy veganism.

Recommends B12 to prevent rare cases of dietary deficiency
Chapter discussing latest research on risks of general supplementation - still recommends B12
Sugar and Salt
Sugar and Salt
 Limits quantities
Chapter on history of these and current role as dietary scapegoats. Still limits quantities.
The Plan The Plan
12 Days of Sam and Sally's progress - meal plan. Tips on social and kitchen preparation, shopping, dining out. Approved brands list
7 Days - meal plan. Tips on social and kitchen preparation, shopping, dining out.
Maximum Weight Loss Maximum Weight Loss
None Summary page
Recipes Recipes
Lots of favourites - Healthy and richer listed separately
Lots of favourites
Medical Reference Medical Reference
Mini Challenging Second Opinion guide


References section References section
Fully referenced by disease Fully referenced by chapter


After reading this great new book, my only complaint is the same one I have about Dr T Colin Campbell.

Both unquestioned dietary giants have embraced the environmental cause but seem to fear entering the ethical arena, perhaps not wanting to be associated with weirdos who actually care about animals. Dr McDougall continues to distance himself from vegans and vegetarians, compared to the thorough research he invests in diet and now the environmental issues of industrial farming.

His environmental chapter is called "We are eating the planet to death." Kudos to you, doctor, for telling it like it is. How about a chapter called "We are torturing billions of animals every day"? That is another undeniable result of industrial farming.  All the book's statements of gentle respect for vegans' sacrifices doesn't cut it. The ethical argument adds that crucial third leg of stability to the plant-based way of life. Readers deserve to hear it.

The Winner?

If you ask me which book to give to a friend you want to help, I'd say "whichever one you've got." The 12-Day book is still relevant, decades after publication.

But The Starch Solution is the book of today - it has more: more information from new research, more modern cover design, and more polish from those extra decades of Dr McDougall's writing and presentation experience. 

Get it for your local library (and your own)!