Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health (Hardcover)
The next stage in the food revolution--a radical way to select fruits and vegetables and reclaim the flavor and nutrients we've lost.
Eating on the Wild Side is the first book to reveal the nutritional history of our fruits and vegetables. Starting with the wild plants that were central to our original diet, investigative journalist Jo Robinson describes how 400 generations of farmers have unwittingly squandered a host of essential fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. New research shows that these losses have made us more vulnerable to our most troubling conditions and diseases--obesity, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic inflammation, and dementia.
In an engaging blend of science and story, Robinson describes how and when we transformed the food in the produce aisles. Wild apples, for example, have from three to 100 times more antioxidants than Galas and Honeycrisps, and are five times more effective in killing cancer cells. Compared with spinach, one of our present-day "superfoods," wild dandelion leaves have eight times more antioxidant activity, two times more calcium, three more times vitamin A, and five times more vitamins K and E.
How do we begin to recoup the losses of essential nutrients? By "eating on the wild side"--choosing present-day fruits and vegetables that come closest to the nutritional bounty of their wild ancestors. Robinson explains that many of these jewels of nutrition are hiding in plain sight in our supermarkets, farmers markets, and U-pick orchards. Eating on the Wild Side provides the world's most extensive list of these superlative varieties. Drawing on her five-year review of recently published studies, Robinson introduces simple, scientifically proven methods of storage and preparation that will preserve and even enhance their health benefits:
- Squeezing fresh garlic in a garlic press and then setting it aside for ten minutes before cooking it will increase your defenses against cancer and cardiovascular disease.
- Baking potatoes, refrigerating them overnight, and then reheating them before serving will keep them from spiking your blood sugar.
- Cooking most berries makes them more nutritious.
- Shredding lettuce the day before you eat it will double its antioxidant activity.
- Store watermelon on the kitchen counter for up to a week and it will develop more lycopene.
- Eat broccoli the day you buy it to preserve its natural sugars and cancer-fighting compounds.
The information in this surprising, important, and meticulously researched book will prove invaluable for omnivores, vegetarians, and vegans alike, and forever change the way we think about food.
About the Author
Jo Robinson is the author or co-author of 14 books of nonfiction. Her research on pastured animals has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Time, Mother Jones, USA TODAY, Men's Health, the San Francisco Chronicle, Atlantic Monthly, and many other publications. She lives and works on Vashon Island, a rural island close to Seattle, WA.
Praise for Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health…
"I learned so much from this outstanding book. Highly recommended reading for all who are health conscious." --Andrew Weil, MD
"Phenomenal....The cure for what ails us is right there, and it's delicious." --Dan Barber, chef and owner of Blue Hill and Blue Hill at Stone Barns
"Because recent studies have taught us that we should be getting our beta carotene and other health-builders not from pills but from well-grown food, this book is just what gardeners and cooks need." --The Washington Post
"Eating on the Wild Side is a wonderful, enlightening book. Jo Robinson has done a magnificent job of bringing together information from so many diverse disciplines--most of it unknown to nutritional scientists, physicians, and lay people alike." --Loren Cordain, Ph.D., author of The Paleo Diet
"If the organic movement needs a Joan of Arc I would surely nominate Jo Robinson. Eating on the Wild Side illustrates why she is without a doubt the quiet anchor of the movement. Only Michael Pollan would come close to her superbly researched work.." --Bill Kurtis, Chairman and Founder, Tallgrass Beef Company
"With Eating on the Wild Side, Jo Robinson has written the next Omnivore's Dilemma--a book of revelations that food lovers and home cooks everywhere will be reading, recommending, quoting, and living by. Robinson may not be a household name yet, but her groundbreaking work will turn much of what you thought you knew about food upside down and inside out." --Epicurious.com
"From its pages, you will get a wonderful education on the changes that have taken place in agriculture over the past century, and you will discover new ways to enhance your health by choosing the best that natures has to offer us." --The Sacramento Bee
"A great book. I think people will change the way they buy their food. I know that I will." --Dr. Sanjay Gupta
"Robinson busts conventional wisdom on vegetables. Those of us who follow nutrition news have heard it all. And so it is not insignificant to say that Robinson has turned things on their proverbial heads." --The Huffington Post
"Eating more fruits and vegetables is wise advice. This entertaining and informative guidebook shows us why it's true--and which types are the best to add to our diet." --Shelf Awareness