I’m always on the lookout for books that I can use to learn more about healthy eating. I was given a free copy of Foods That Harm, Foods That Heal Cookbook to review. You may have seen previous versions of this Reader’s Digest book.
I can benefit from books that focus on health, even when they are not strictly plant-based in nature. There are a lot of things I love about this book and a few with which I respectfully disagree.
What I Love about “Foods That Harm, Foods That Heal Cookbook”
Foods That Harm, Foods That Heal Cookbook has a great layout. The book is divided into three parts, but has a great intro that discusses nutrition, healthier cooking methods and organic produce.
Part 1 Healing Foods
I’ve reached for this book several times to recap the health benefits of certain foods I’ve used in cooking demonstrations.
For example, there is a page about Lentils. This page provides a typical serving size (1/2 cup) and calorie count (115 calories). For each food it also lists How They Harm, What They Heal, and Nutrients. Lentil, for example, “harm” with bloating and flatulence. Lentils “heal” high cholesterol, blood sugar spikes, weight gain, constipation and several other things. Nutrients listed include B vitamins, fiber, folate, iron, magnesium, and others. Each page also gives buying, storing and cooking suggestions along with recipes.
Part 2 Recipes
Many of these recipes are plant-based or can be easily adapted. Each recipe lists the servings, prep and cook time, healing foods in the recipe along with ailments this recipe is good to help heal. There is also nutrition information for each recipe.
There are over 250 recipes and many of the recipes contain meat but you can also find recipes like Open-Faced Grilled Vegetable Sandwich, Black Bean and Sweet Potato Burritos and Vegetable Stuffed Mushrooms.
Part 3 Sample Meal Plans for Ailments
Each ailment has a sample daily meal plan to help with your illness, it even gives you the page number for the recipe mentioned. Blood Pressure, for example, lists harmful foods (salty and processed foods), foods that heal (green leafy vegetables, low-fat dairy products, legumes, bananas, etc.), and foods to limit (red meat, butter, alcohol and caffeine). The page goes on to list guidelines for having a healthy blood pressure and a meal plan.
What I Don’t Like
While I like the overall book there are a few things I don’t agree with.
There are foods in this book that are listed and encouraged that I don’t consider healthy. Cheese, milk and various forms of meat including organ meat are listed as healthy and healing foods.
This book, although not vegan does focus on whole foods. If someone was eating the Standard American Diet (SAD) this book would be a tremendous help. If you are established in a whole food, plant-based diet this book could be helpful to you too. I would love a plant-based version of this book but in the mean time I’ll continue to reach for Foods That Harm, Foods That Heal Cookbook when I need a quick reference for healing foods.
FTC Disclaimer: I received a free copy to review. This page contains affiliate links.