The China Study by Thomas Campbell

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experience, philosophy or the occasional supporting scientific study.
Now there are hundreds of detailed, comprehensive, well-done research
studies that point in the same direction.
Furthermore, 1 have hope for the future because of our new abil-
ity to exchange information across the country and around the world.
A much greater proportion of the world population is literate, and a
much greater proportion of that population has the luxury of choosing
what they eat from a wide variety of readily accessible foods. People can
make a whole foods, plant-based diet varied, interesting, tasty and con-
venient. 1 have hope because people in small towns and in previously
isolated parts of the country can now readily access cutting edge health
information and put it into practice.
All of these things together create an atmosphere unlike any other,
an atmosphere that demands change. Contrary to the situation in 1982,
when a few colleagues tried to destroy the reputations of scientists who
suggested that diet had anything to do with cancer, it is now more com-
monly accepted that what you eat can determine your risk of multiple
cancers. 1 have also seen the public image of vegetarianism emerge from
being considered a dangerous, passing fad to a healthful, endUring life-
style choice. The popularity of plant-based diets has been increasing,
and both the variety and availability of convenient vegetarian foods have
been skyrocketing. 14 Restaurants around the country now regularly offer
meat-free and dairy-free options.^15 Scientists are publishing more articles
about vegetarianism and writing more about the health potential of a
plant-based diet. 16 Now, over 150 years after my great-great uncle George
Macilwain wrote books about diet and disease, 1 am writing a book about
diet and disease with the help of my youngest son Tom. Tom's middle
name is McIlwain (the family changed the spelling over the past couple
of generations), which means that not only am 1 writing about many of
the same ideas Macilwain wrote about, but a relative bearing his name is
the co-author. History can repeat itself. This time, however, instead of the
message being forgotten and confined to library stacks, 1 believe that the
world is finally ready to accept it. More than that, 1 believe the world is
finally ready to change. We have reached a point in our history where our
bad habits can no longer be tolerated. We, as a society, are on the edge of
a great precipice: we can fall to sickness, poverty and degradation, or we
can embrace health, longevity and bounty. And all it takes is the courage
to change. How will our grandchildren find themselves in 100 years?
Only time will tell, but I hope that the history we are witnessing and the
future that lies ahead will be to the benefit of us all.

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