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Living Well

Inside the List
By JENNIFER SCHUESSLER
Published: February 11, 2011
NY Times Sunday Book Review.

SOY TO THE WORLD: Vegans may be thin on the ground in Oklahoma, but there seem to be enough v-curious people everywhere else to send Kathy Freston’s manifesto “Veganist” to No. 3 on the hardcover how-to and advice list. Freston also has the backing of Oprah Winfrey, who recently led 378 of her employees on a one-week “vegan challenge,” documented on the Feb. 1 episode of her show. In between interviews with Freston, Michael Pollan and other healthy-eating gurus, staffer after staffer offered testimonials to the mind- and body-altering properties of a diet purged of all animal products, though most seemed to have emerged from the experience less veganist than vegan-ish. One (male) co-producer reveled in going “from a C cup to a B and a half.” Oprah herself, after taking a swig of broccoli smoothie, announced Meatless Mondays in the company cafeteria, adding, “Let’s try not to get sued for it.” Not everybody was thrilled by the experience, however: one junk-food-addicted co-producer complained that the vegan diet had left her feeling “angry.” Maybe she should pitch an episode built around another new advice book: the business guru Andy Kessler’s “Eat People: And Other Unapologetic Rules for Game-Changing Entrepreneurs.” I can even recommend a guest: the law professor Allan C. Hutchinson, author of the new book “Is Eating People Wrong? Great Legal Cases and How They Shaped the World.”


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