Unless you have been living under a rock, or have forgotten your password to your Twitface+ account, you would have no doubt heard about the recent release of the new Whole9 book “It Starts With Food”. It is superb. Buy it. Read it. Never view food the same again. Of course, if you are happy eating what you eat and want to remain blissfully ignorant, then step away from the book… go stock up on Doritos’ and park yourself on the couch with a DVD. There’s nothing to see here for you.
I’m not going to write much on this book as a) I’m a bit late jumping on this bus and there are numerous reviews available already (use the power of Google-fu), and b) having read this review from the lovely Julianne Taylor, anything I write will be an almost verbatim reiteration of that. But I will add a couple of thoughts which I haven’t seen mentioned too often elsewhere…
It Starts With Food is the baby of two of my favourite people – a couple I have become good (real life) friends with, am inspired by, and who (reluctantly on their part I think), have become role models to me – Dallas & Melissa Hartwig. But while this book is every bit theirs, having poured their hearts and souls into this project, it is by no means the gospel-according-to-the-Hartwig’s. As part of pulling the information for this book together, they consulted far and wide. They formulated their ideas and then laid them bare to be dismantled and totally pulled to bits by some of the sharpest of minds in their respective fields – think the likes of Matt Lalonde and Emily Deans.
Somehow – and I have no idea how – I was privileged enough to be part of that process too. Dallas and Melissa bounced some ideas off me, asked for my thoughts and sent through early drafts of some chapters for me to review. I looked forward to my late summer afternoon’s where I would stroll down to a cafe armed with my bright orange Sharpie and espresso, and attempt to be constructively critical.
Now having two people of the calibre of D & M sending you information that they have clearly put a lot of their own research, intellect and commonsense into refining, and trying to go back to them with ‘some things to think about’, you run the risk of making yourself look like a right numpty. If any of my critiques gave them some amusement, they were certainly gracious enough not to let on…
There are the inevitable comparisons with similar books already in existence – the likes of the Primal Blueprint’s, Paleo Solution’s, and so on. I’d like to think that this book builds on the work of others – an evolution, if you will. The Hartwig’s freely acknowledge that they stand on the shoulders of giants with the work that they do. And just as they recognise that they can do the job they do because of the work the Wolf’s and Cordain’s of the world have already done, so it is for those of us looking to follow in their footsteps. This book, and all its support material, makes my job easier.
If you want an easy-to-read user’s guide to you – on food, then this is the book to start with. If you want to improve your health, or that of a friend or loved one, then “It Starts With Food” is exactly where you should start.