As a boy, noted health researcher T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D., rose daily at 4:30 a.m. to milk the family cows. It was all part of developing a strong work ethic and a commitment to integrity.
He writes in the Introduction to The China Study:
“When I first learned to drive a team of horses or herd cattle… to fish our creek or work the fields, I came to accept that independent thinking was part of the deal.”
“It was a great classroom, as any farm boy can tell you. That sense of independence has stayed with me until today.”
However, as a farm boy, he also held a firm belief that the meat-, egg- and milk-based American diet was the best on Earth. How convinced was he that animal protein was the “cornerstone of good nutrition?”
Enough so that his Cornell thesis focused on speeding the growth of cows and sheep. He admits that it was a topic heavily influenced by a worldwide movement to eliminate the “protein gap” in third-world countries.
This movement blamed hunger and malnutrition among children from developing countries squarely on their plant-based diets. And until 1968, Dr. Campbell agreed.
That’s when, as an assistant professor at Virginia Tech, he coordinated a research program. The goal was to supplement the diets of undernourished Filipino children with animal proteins. But the results weren’t what he expected:
“Children who ate the highest protein diets were the ones most likely to get liver cancer!”
When an Indian research study supported the Filipino findings, his career reached “a defining moment…Questioning protein and animal-based foods… ran the risk of being labeled a heretic.”
But he’s consistently sought to follow the scientific facts despite their negative impact on his personal reputation or academic success. So Dr. Campbell wasn’t about to drop the matter.
With his independent spirit fired up, he joined Dr. Juhshi Chen and a world-class scientific team in the extensive, 20-year research undertaking that became The China Study.
Their work challenged long-held beliefs about the importance of meat and dairy and clearly showed the undeniable benefits of a plant-based diet.
Throughout his book, Campbell shares empirical data from his own studies and many other research groups supporting a plant-based diet. This includes statistics on heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
He boldly exposes how government, media, and academia have blocked this research to keep people eating the western diet. Following his journey from farm boy to eminent researcher, The China Study unveils the science behind food’s impact on our most common diseases.
Thanks to this book and Dr. Campbell’s persistence, the plant-based movement is rapidly expanding!