When Sharon Jean Wiginton was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer, she leaned into nutrition therapy, following two lumpectomies after initial diagnosis. Aware that she did not wish to follow heavy drug treatments, she found a doctor who enlightened her about healing from cancer through nutrition, and guided her through a four-week juice diet. .
Wiginton shares her journey and lessons learned in ABOUNDING HEALTH NATURALLY, and includes recipes and a resource list of individuals and holistic healing professionals for readers seeking more information. The book will probably be best received by an evangelical Christian readership that is at the start of its health journey, and in search of guidance and motivation expressed in its own vernacular. Wiginton includes quotes and passages of scripture that look to inspire. Throughout the volume, she refers to her present diet as “God’s original diet plan” with three points to help determine “if food is a ‘real’ food.”
As well-meaning as Wiginton’s recommendations are, she spends much of the volume praising the value of juicing, which seems to go directly against her second point (“You must be able to eat it without processing it in any way.”). She attempts to address this, quoting, “I hear people argue that God did not create the fruits and vegetables ‘juiced,’ and that is true. It is also true that God made fruits and vegetables in the beginning to be much more nutrient packed than they are now…So when we juice, we are making up for the fact that most fruits and vegetables are not the nutrition packed creation God originally created them to be.” Wiginton provides more guidance toward a cancer-deterring diet, all based in her personal experience.
While the rules she provides for food selection and consumption would ensure that a consumer would shy away from the usual suspects like refined carbohydrates and fatty foods, these same rules don’t seem to necessarily line up logically with the recommendations she makes. This ultimately causes the book to read more along the lines of an opinion or personal piece, straying in its logic, rather than boasting the feel of a health manual. This phenomenon is compounded by the anecdotal evidence and personal experience she uses to draw conclusions, rather than research-based evidence.
Other generalizations and sweeping judgments, such as “…God created our bodies to be in health. He gave us the gift of health; we create disease and illness in our bodies by the choices we make” take away from more inspiring passages, which is where Wiginton could have found her strength. The book, which would have greatly benefited from an inspirational and kind, encouraging tone, suffers in the end from a didactic, moralizing feel, which is at odds with its intended purpose.
If ABOUNDING HEALTH NATURALLY succeeds in reaching a population that might not have sought out nutrition-based solutions unless the message was couched in their own vernacular, then it may fill a gap and grow into its niche.
~Emily Martin for IndieReader