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Instinctive Nutrition: Food, Your Body and You

by Helen Young
(1995) Accord Health & Lifestyle Management, P.O. Box 41, Flemington 3031, Victoria, Australia.

Review by Kirt Nieft
Copyright © 1998 by Kirt Nieft. All rights reserved.
Contact author for permission to republish.

Ms. Young's book is a short, general exposition of instincto explaining some of Guy-Claude Burger's ideas on alimentation. Barely more than 100 pages of large font, this is really something of a chapbook. In keeping with the book's brevity, Guy-Claude himself contributes a one-page forward. Apparently, Helen Young, an R.N. and I.N. (I don't know what that might mean) visited Mr. Burger's Chateau outside of Paris and was quite taken with what she observed and experienced as she started eating instincto. Subsequently, she wrote up an introduction to the subject for an Australian audience.

Happily, the prose is clear and readable. Useful analogies abound and the author explains most of the general tenets of instincto. Much of the book works as a "how to" course on instincto and it ends with a 21-day program that includes a charting option to keep track of health and detox events. In all, the book is heavy on practicalities and matter-of-fact on theory--a combination which certain readers may find refreshing.

A chapter entitled "Research and Evidence Revealed" reveals neither, but does manage to summarize instincto lore without getting too long-winded. There are only 30-some pages of theory--which touch on the taste-change, domestication, Maillard molecules, the immune system, and the instincto view of viruses--before she takes the reader on an armchair tour of How To Do It For Yourself.

In a chapter called "The Other Half of Success--Your Toolbox" she writes (again, briefly) on the value of exercise, keeping hydrated, breathing, skin-brushing, massage, bathing, rest, fresh air, and herbal therapy (one smells the dried herbs and consumes them according to sensory pleasure). I found interesting Ms. Young's claim that aloe vera consumption was a reasonable substitute for cassia (the all-purpose instincto detox fruit of the Golden Shower tree, cassia fistula). After consuming some aloe vera for a time myself, I didn't find it similar in effect to cassia consumption, but, hey, I'm probably not a good test subject after years of cassia for breakfast. ;-) In any case, this all segues to a fine discussion of detoxing in the next chapter: "What To Expect."

Ms. Young's book is a good introduction to instincto, but if you've read any of the other instincto books reviewed on this site you will find very little that is new here. And, as evident in the other books, you will find lots of theory stated as fact, lots of overstatement, and the usual dose of how instinctive nutrition will save humankind. Par for the course, it seems. ;-)

--Kirt Nieft

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