The China Study – A Review

This book definitely gave me food for thought…or maybe serious thought about food?

I was told to read this book a couple of times by readers of my blog and I finally picked it up on the plane flight back from Melbourne.

It’s dense. It’s full of statistics, research and further reading.

It’s written by a nutritional scientist…for other nutritional scientists.

The China Study

Not ideal reading for a 9pm flight at the end of a holiday but I persevered.

The China Study was the largest study of human nutrition ever conducted, it looked at the diet of people in different counties of China and the rates of disease in each area.

After a bit of a look around the internet some people have suggested that not all factors were taken into consideration (such as exercise levels in these regions) so results are not as conclusive as they look on paper. As a non-researcher I am going to stay neutral on this subject.

One of the more interesting facts in this book was the author’s research on rats. In multiple, peer-reviewed animal studies, researchers discovered that they could actually turn the growth of cancer cells on and off by raising and lowering doses of casein, the main protein found in cow’s milk.


Another fact was that they found that nothing (not pesticides, not carcinogenic chemicals) turned on cancer quicker than poor nutrition. The food you eat affects the way your cells interact with carcinogens, making them more or less dangerous. “The results of these, and many other studies, showed nutrition to be far more important in controlling cancer promotion than the dose of the initiating carcinogen.”

So the conclusion for the best diet after The China Study by the author (formally from a dairy-farming background)?

A plant-based (non-dairy), whole food diet. The more plants you eat the more nutrition you are feeding your cells and they concluded that this stops the growth of diseases. (I think I will be giving my family a double dose of vegetable juice from now on!)

They concluded that those who ate the most animal products and processed food were the most unhealthy.

Meatless Monday anyone?



  1. And then you get the Weston A Price people (Nourishing Traditions) who have a very convincing argument for animal products. All in moderation I say. But what they all agree on is nothing processed and loads of fresh organic fruit and vegies. Hope to see you soon! xxx

    1. Will have to read. It’s so hard to sort through it all but everyone does seem to agree on more vegetables less processed food (fruit is a contentious issue for some!). Hopefully make it to play group this week x

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