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The New “Perfect Health Diet”


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In September of 2010, I wrote about an exciting new book on nutrition and health that I wholeheartedly recommended to my readers and patients: Perfect Health Diet. I was impressed by the level of deep research and clear thinking that Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet provided in their first edition, and was relieved to finally have a resource I could suggest to my readers as a good introduction to scientifically-based nutritional principles.

Now, I’m even more excited to tell you all about their newest edition of Perfect Health Diet, which is now available for purchase online.

While the first edition of Perfect Health Diet was great, the Jaminets have made a number of improvements in this second edition that make it an even better resource for dietary recommendations that are well founded in nutrition science, and supported by anthropological, biochemical, and clinical evidence as well. The organization of this new edition has been greatly improved, making it easier to find the exact information you’re looking for, whether that be personalized macronutrient recommendations, specific toxins to avoid, or micronutrients that you may be missing in your current diet.

The writing style is succinct and easy to understand while presenting a wide range of scientific evidence that supports the Jaminets’ recommendations. For this reason, I believe this book is a must-read not only for the average health-conscious individual, but also for health professionals that are looking for solid evidence that supports an ancestral nutrition philosophy. This book would be especially useful to convince a conventional doctor or dietitian that their views on food and nutrition are outdated, as the Jaminets provide an enormous range of evidence to back up their recommendations. This book could change a lot of lives if read by the right people!

One of the highlights of this book is the evidence for why we should include a certain amount of “safe” starches in our diets. At the Ancestral Health Symposium this year, Paul and I argued in favor of starch on the Safe Starch Panel; you can watch the video here. They have also included an educational section on micronutrients and how they interact with each other to support human health. The supplement recommendations are more conservative than they were in the first book (something I’m glad to see), yet helpful for those who may be missing out on some key nutrients in their diet for a variety of reasons. The Jaminets also present their “nutrient hunger hypothesis of obesity,” a which I think may be one of many contributing factors to the obesity epidemic.

The most eye-opening chapter may be “Industrial Food Toxins,” where the Jaminets explain how modern food production has created a highly toxic, disease and obesity-promoting food environment in this country. While many of us nutrition-geeks understand the dangers of processed foods, you may find this section to be a great resource when trying to convince friends and loved ones to make changes in their own diets. It’s hard to imagine anyone could continue eating a highly processed diet after reading about the dangers of doing so.

The new edition also includes many “Reader Reports” that provide encouraging testimony to the effectiveness of the diet. Readers have experienced dramatic health improvements, such as weight loss, better sleep and energy levels, reduction in disease symptoms, and an overall improved quality of life. It can be challenging to take on a big lifestyle change unless you know the potential for reward, and based on the feedback the Jaminets have received, it doesn’t take a leap of faith to expect great health results from following the recommendations found in this book.

This is the best book available that explains the science behind the paleo or primal diet and lifestyle while making easy-to-follow recommendations. It would make a great holiday gift for anyone you know who is in need of a diet change in order to take control of their health.

Get your copy of Perfect Health Diet today, and start your journey towards optimal health!

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  1. Im so keen to read this, but I dont think it comes on Kindle which is SO ANNOYING for a kindle addict like me!

    • I just purchased the book on my Kindle on Friday. So yes, it’s available in the Kindle format.

  2. Very nice review Chris – I read their first book because of your recommendation and just received this newer edition two days ago . You are exactly right when you say “The writing style is succinct and easy to understand while presenting a wide range of scientific evidence that supports the Jaminets’ recommendations.” I really do think that it is a good way to introduce people to the concepts of a paleo/ancestral diet without scaring people away as some earlier versions of paleo have.
    Between your site (am working my way through your High Cholesterol Action Plan) and the Jaminets Perfect Health Diet, i’ve seen great improvements in my health. I always point people to both your site and theirs as I know they will get good sound information. Thanks for all the work you do 🙂

  3. Do they still only recommend eating egg yolks and not the whites? That seems contradictory to all other paleo/primal recommendations.

    • How does it? Egg yolks have all the vitamins and minerals, whites have avidin the biotin inhibitor… It is contradictory to low fat mentalities but not paleo/primal…

      • Because I keep seeing articles about importance of eating the whole egg and they are usually on “primal” or “paleo” blogs, that’s all.

        • I think that this in the context of affirming the goodness of the yolk in the context lowfat mentality prevalent in some parts of society/promoted by authorities, about the negatives of sat fat, chol that are in the egg yolk. So it is not about discarding the yolk. If anything, discard the white which supposedly is more conducive to allergy formation.

  4. The first edition was already essential reading. I’ve three copies of the new edition on order from Amazon: one fit us, one to give as a Christmas present and one to loan out to the infidels :0)

  5. Chris, I concur, and I’ve already convinced one person to order the PHD.

    I would characterize the PDH as an “idiot proof” diet in so far as there can be such a thing. There are no extremes, nutrients are maximized, excesses are prevented, digestive efficiency is maximized. As for supplements, if you need something for some special reason then you need it, but if you’re not sure, or supplementing “just in case”, or have occasional needs, then using vitamins as the PHD recommends is wiser than assuming that something worth doing once or twice will therefore always be needed.
    Using B vitamins every few days, in small amounts, works better for me that taking them all the time.

  6. Everyone, when giving Christmas presents this year, let’s give this book as a present. Why give Dad another tie, and Mom another purse, when what people really need is this book. Let’s all buy this book in bulk, give it to everyone we know, and help improve society. I believe autism is now at 1 in every 75 kids, and still rising. Let’s get this book out in bulk!

  7. Chris, I have noticed that there are some differences in the Jaminets diet recommendations and your recommendations.For example, the Jaminets explicitly ban legumes, but on your site and podcasts I think you do not speak about legumes, for or against.
    Also the Jaminets recommendations on supplements are extremely different than yours. They recommend taking B vitamins weekly etc. We would be interested in hearing more about your thoughts on these differences.