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VOYAEver wondered who invented the "Carbohydrate Addict's Diet" or what exactly "Christian diets" might be? Bijlefeld and Zoumbaris have answers to these questions and more about diet trends. Organized as an encyclopedia, with listings of popular fad diets, descriptions of each plan, and the health myths or facts that support them, this resource includes a historic overview of diet trends as well as appendixes of "smart snack solutions" and sample healthy menus. Among its entries detailing diet fads such as the "grapefruit diet" are informational pieces about the food pyramid and the risk of diabetes among the overweight. Although each entry seems complete and follows an alphabetic principle of organization, the guide is not necessarily intuitive. The encyclopedia includes an entry for "Tarnower, Herman," who readers discover by reading the information beneath his title is the creator of the Scarsdale Diet, itself a topic discussed earlier in the resource. A more appropriate method of organization might be by diet "type" (calorie restrictive, food group restrictive, etc.), with a section that discusses doctor-recommended health practices and menus. In addition, some information is repeated; the method to calculate Body Mass Index is duplicated in two entries, and the Food Guide Pyramid is found in two places (albeit modified for vegetarians in one instance). This encyclopedia might be useful in the health classroom or the nurse's office; however, as the fad diets within are described in fairly granular detail, the possibility exists that a troubled reader might use the encyclopedia as guidance, not as a warning. 2003, Greenwood, 242p.; Index. Illus. Biblio., PLB. Ages 11 to Adult.
—Amy S. Pattee