THE TRUTH ABOUT FAT by Anthony Warner


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The author of the Angry Chef blog seeks to expose lies and pretensions regarding fatness.

Warner (The Angry Chef: Bad Science and the Truth about Healthy Eating, 2017), a British professional chef and food writer, takes a broad view, first documenting the obesity epidemic with charts and statistics and looking at how fat we are, why we get fat, and why we worry about it or are so afraid of it. Among the many questions the author explores: Is it because of our genes, our gut microbes, the calories we consume, our addictions, our environment, or our laziness? Should we blame carbohydrates or fats? Warner then takes a hard look at some of the attempts to control weight, such as drugs and surgery. His take-home message is that there are no quick fixes; no single cure exists because there is no single cause. Obesity, he writes, is a system-level problem that calls for system-level solutions: health professionals working with dieticians and fitness experts to help individuals; public health professionals working to upgrade schools, housing, and employment opportunities in local communities, especially the poorest ones; corporations improving the foods they offer; and government taking action to reduce poverty. The author lightens his research-laden semitextbook with frequent eye-catching headings (“Everyone Likes a Nice Round Number,” “Cheesecake, Cocaine, and Electrified Floors,” “It’s Not All About Dying, You Know”) and a generous sprinkling of quotes. Often, Warner comes across as a scold, but his targets are the popular myths about weight, not the people who are overweight or think that they are. The epilogue, “What to Do If You Are Fat,” encourages people to ask themselves why they want to lose weight, to stop seeing fatness as a moral issue, and to take time to enjoy eating with friends and neighbors.

Well-documented and accessible information and advice from an author who clearly loves food and cares about people.

Pub Date: Jan. 8th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-78607-513-0
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 2018


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