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the unintended consequences of the low fat diet

by Alan Watson

First published: March 2009



Midwest Book Review, March 2009

“Cereal Killer is a look at the plague of diabetes and obesity that is becoming a huge problem among all age groups of children…. Watson discusses remedies to America’s epidemic as well as speaking of its origins. “Cereal Killer” is well worth the read for those concerned with the health of a nation.


Cereal Killer – Table of Contents

Part I is a succinct critical history of the low fat era that began in 1961 when the American Heart Association (AHA) first officially endorsed a low fat diet. In 1980, the U.S. Department of Agriculture joined the AHA low fat bandwagon. Cereal Killer answers the question, “Has low fat failed the test of time?”

Part I:  The test of time

Chapter 1:  Pyramid Schemes

Chapter 2:  Lessons of Framingham

Chapter 3:  Unintended Consequences

Chapter 4:  Cereal Killer

Chapter 5:  Class of 2018.

Part II is a positive analysis of dietary cholesterol and saturated fat – combating decades of fat-bashing by doctors, dietitians, university nutrition departments, and the federal government.

Part II: Life in the fat lane

Chapter 6:  “Loose Lips Sink Ships”

Chapter 7:  Atkins… without Atkins

Chapter 8:  Cholesterol is not a Medical Criminal!

Chapter 9:  Lipids for Smart People

Chapter 10:  Praise the Lard

Cereal Killer challenges the still unproven hypothesis that dietary cholesterol and saturated fat cause heart disease. Watson identifies the real culprits:  Excess carbohydrates and the highly processed vegetable oils that have replaced our traditional more saturated and monounsaturated fats.

  • Appendix I:  Lipid Panel – Summary of coronary heart disease risk factors
  • Appendix 2:  Lipids – The Big Picture with glossary

Watson says the problem with the American diet has nothing to do with fat, cholesterol or eating too many calories. Instead, the underlying common denominator of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease is the emphasis on carbohydrates in the official Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

“We think this is a must read by anyone raising a family…”

US Wellness Meats Newsletter

“It is with great pride that we help promote this important and excellent book.”

Joan Grinzi, RN, Executive Director, Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation

Cereal Killer is at once a devastatingly thorough intellectual assault on the low fat “balanced diet” dogma promoted by the likes of the USDA and the American Heart Association and a passionate call to action. In many ways, Cereal Killer is — in the words of an Amazon reviewer — the “Readers Digest” version of Gary Taubes’ Good Calories, Bad Calories…. It is succinct, punchy, and full of great info that even low carb veterans may not know.”

Adam Kosloff:   Why Low Carb Diets Don’t Work 

“Although Cereal Killer is only 144 pages in length, it will catch you up-to-date on everything you need to know about the current state of affairs we find ourselves in regarding diet and health in the 21st Century.”

Jimmy Moore:  “Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb Man”

  “…  After years and years of following what we assumed to be sound scientific advice, are we any healthier? No. In fact, we are one of the unhealthiest nations on the planet. Mr. Watson sees this problem. I could barely put this book down.  Mr. Watson’s book is a great place to start and I highly recommend it.”

-Amy Dungan,

“I’d recommend this book to anyone. From those who already have health problems to those who just want to feed their family as healthfully as possible!”

-Donielle Baker, Naturally Knocked Up

Cereal Killer is really well done – the scholarship is outstanding, the organization is impeccable, and what Watson has to say is alarming and “explosive” as the back jacket promises. Additionally, this book comes at an ideal time in our history, when parents, educators and government officials are scrambling for new answers to old persistent problems…”

Writer’s Digest – 17th Annual Self Published Book Awards 

“… This book shows how money and the drug companies contribute to what is labeled as healthy in the food pyramid that is pushed on the uninformed. A great read…”

Malcolm Mac Gregor, the “Body Doc” 

Cereal Killer is out there challenging the corn syrup pushers who intend to spend $30 million between now and 2010 to make sure the guidelines don’t single them…! Cereal Killer is a must read to become truly informed and to challenge the conventional wisdom about what we are told not to eat…”

-Mark Madson, Louisa, VA

“Watson brings a combination of food industry history, marketing and advertising, politics (oh, how important today), and large helpings of nutrition together in this very readable, interesting and potent book.”

John Koenig, Writer,

 “I’ve read many articles and books about obesity, weight loss, and diabetes, but Cereal Killer was easiest to understand. Just the weight loss chapter – “Atkins without Atkins” – is worth the price of the book…”

Karen Black, Minneapolis, MN