The McDougall Diet

Dr. McDougall is a maverick who disagrees with most experts. He recommends a high starch, low fat diet with no dairy or animal foods and other prohibitions. Its severe restrictions make it nutritionally questionable and it has never been properly tested in a controlled study. It is commonly believed that people who want to lose

Edzard Ernst Tackles Chiropractic

Edzard Ernst’s new book is a handy, comprehensive reference for all things chiropractic. Edzard Ernst’s prolific output continues. In his latest book Chiropractic: Not All That It’s Cracked Up to Be he takes on one of the most popular SCAMS (So-Called Alternative Medicines). It is an even-handed review of the history and claims of chiropractic, examining the

New book: Anti-vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement

This book is a handy compendium of everything worth knowing about the anti-vaccine movement and how to challenge the misinformation. Jonathan Berman’s new book Anti-vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement has two goals: to provide a complete picture of the anti-vaccine movement and to provide a counterpoint to some of the misinformation that has been

Shooting the Messenger: Activists Persecute Scientists Whose Findings They Don’t Like

Alice Dreger’s book recounts many instances of shooting the messenger, when scientists were persecuted for research findings that activists found objectionable. Social justice matters, but it should rely on science and reality, not ideology. Don’t shoot him. He’s just bringing a message. Alice Dreger is an academic historian who has been active in supporting those

No, Everything You Thought You Knew About Disease Is Not Wrong

The authors of this book are not doctors or scientists, but they try to convince readers that science-based medicine gets it all wrong, that germs don’t cause disease, and that drugs and vaccines can’t possibly work. No, the book gets it all wrong. The book What Really Makes You Ill?: Why Everything You Thought You Knew

Is Magnesium the Underlying Cause and Treatment for Everything?

Carolyn Dean believes magnesium deficiency is the cause of a great many diseases and recommends that everyone take magnesium supplements, preferably the one she sells, ReMag. I remain skeptical. This is magnesium. Do you need more of it? I was recently asked about the book The Magnesium Miracle, by Carolyn Dean. The word “miracle” in the

Don’t Believe What You Think

A new book by Edzard Ernst provides a concise course in critical thinking as well as a wealth of good science-based information to counter the widespread misinformation about SCAM. Edzard Ernst was once a practitioner of alternative medicine. As the world’s first professor of complementary medicine (at the University of Exeter, UK) he led a

The Science and Pseudoscience of What We Eat

Dr. Joe Schwarcz sets the record straight about food myths and what the research actually shows.  What should we eat? There’s no lack of experts and celebrities who are eager to advise us about diet, but different experts have different advice and often directly contradict each other. Obviously they can’t all be right. Which “experts”

Darwin’s Apostles: The Battle Continues

David Orenstein and Abby Hafer have written a delightful new book, Darwin’s Apostles: The Men Who Fought to Have Evolution Accepted, Their Times, and How the Battle Continues. Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1859. In the 160 years since then, much has been written about Darwin and evolution, but this entertaining, well-written book sheds new light

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