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Say No to Arthritis: Book review

UK author Patrick Holford - who is well-known for his low GI diet books and nutrition-first approach to health issues - has updated his 1999 book which was aimed at preventing and relieving arthritis.

Say No to Arthritis is a detailed approach which focuses on changing an individual's whole approach to health and well-being.

Those looking for a quick-fix solution will be disappointed as there's no "10 foods to avoid" or similar short-cuts.

Instead, Holford explains what he thinks causes arthritis, details how to reduce symptoms and then outlines a complete anti-arthritis diet with recipes and resources for consultation*.

A lot of the material reflects his general approach to health and I expect some of the themes (like Upping Your Anti-oxidants, Natural Painkillers and Beneficial B Vitamins) are repeated throughout all of this work.

Plenty of his advice is well-supported ie increasing slow-release low-GI carbohydrates, avoiding blood sugar spikes, following a low fat diet (with a high proportion of essential "good" fats), avoiding caffeine, alcohol and other stimulants and following the general themes of this book could probably only improve your overall health.

However, Holford's work can be controversial. He has made questionable claims about treatments for HIV/AIDS and the causes of autism and contends that nutrition is the main key to treating mental health problems.

In Say No to Arthritis, he argues against dairy products, pushes a variety of supplements while arguing that humans cannot get all their necessary nutrients from food and promotes hydrotherapy.

His "drug-free approach" can sound convincing and following this book may mean you can indeed Say No to Arthritis, but it should probably be read with a degree of scepticism and a reminder of Arthritis New Zealand's main advice: Adopt a healthy lifestyle and eat a balanced diet.

*The resources listed are for the UK but most ingredients in the recipes are recognisable for Kiwis.

Rating: 5/10

Title: Say No to Arthritis
Author: Patrick Holford
RRP: $24.99
Publisher: Hachette New Zealand
Available: Now