Volume 1 - A-L. Volume 2 - M-Z. One-stop source for diet and nutrition information that covers popular and special diets, nutrition basics, and nutrition-related health conditions. Addresses health and nutrition concerns across all age groups from infancy through old age. 1,100 pages.
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As the incidence of diabetes, heart disease, and other obesity-related disorders rise, weight-conscious Americans seek easy ways to pursue healthful diets. There is an abundance of information from the popular media on the topic, but to get a more objective presentation of diets, nutrition, and health, the library user may want to turn to The Gale Encyclopedia of Diets: A Guide to Health and Nutrition. This reference contains 275 articles contributed by specialists in nutrition and medical writing. Topics are arranged alphabetically, with a master index at the end of the second volume. Color figures illustrate some articles, while lists of resources—books, periodicals, and organizations—accompany all of them. In addition to special or popular diets (Anti-inflammatory diets, Subway diet), the encyclopedia describes nutrition-related health problems (Bulimia nervosa, Diabetes mellitus) and other nutrition-related topics (Food labeling, St. Johns wort). Every entry starts with definitions and descriptions, and within each category, the articles follow a common format. Diet articles, for example, include sections on the diet’s function, benefits, risks, and “questions to ask your doctor.” Information on health problems describes demographics, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. Entries on other topics related to nutrition include relevant precautions, interactions, “parental concerns,” and other appropriate information. Among other information to be gleaned from these volumes, readers will learn that the Body for Life, Eating for Life, and Fit for Life diet programs may have similar names, but their approaches and goals differ significantly. Bulimia nervosa is the most common eating disorder in the U.S., afflicting 3 percent of Americans, 85 to 90 percent of whom are female. Finally, there are several diets described as “ancient” or “time-honored” (for example, the Asian diet), but the so-called Caveman diet and Neanderthin beat them all, having been around for more than 10,000 years, their proponents claim. The Gale Encyclopedia of Diets is a practical reference, providing timely information on a topic of interest to many of us. No other reference source pulls together so much information on so many different popular diets, and its standard rubric for articles allows for quick comparisons of goals, approaches, risks, and benefits. It is highly recommended for any public or academic library. --Lilian Hoffecker
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