Did you know that reading a book is good for your health? Reading increases your knowledge, improves concentration and can even help reduce stress. But with so little time to devote to this healthy endeavor, how do you select the right book? Let us help you. At Health Plus, our goal is to provide people with well-researched, and effective nutritional supplements in order to live happier, healthier lives. In that spirit, we would like to recommend five books that reflect our approach to health and that we think offer unique insight into ways to improve your wellbeing. Here are our Top 5 picks for a happy and healthy start to the New Year
Why We Sleep
Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams
A fascinating and compelling book, Why We Sleep presents an overview of the scientific evidence Walker has collected in his role as a neuroscientist and Director of UC Berkeley’s Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab. As Walker describes it, being overtired can leave us vulnerable to all sorts of diseases and illnesses including cancer, depression, obesity and chronic pain. Filled with interesting and useful information, Why We Sleep will not only change the way you think about sleep, it may even improve your health.
In Defense of Food
The Myth of Nutrition and the Pleasures of Eating by Michael Pollan
“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” This simple sentence sets the tone for what to expect by reading Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food: The Myth of Nutrition and the Pleasures of Eating. Pollan presents a thoughtful critique of the food industry and nutritional science as he helps readers understand the benefit of eating whole foods as opposed to focusing only on individual ingredients. He invites people to step away from the packaged supermarket items, and instead, recommends choosing more fresh produce or what he calls ‘real food’. As the book says, “Don’t eat anything that your great grandmother would not recognize as food.” Sound advice as we walk the supermarket aisles.
The Blue Zones Kitchen
100 Recipes to Love to 100 - Dan Buettner
The Blue Zone Kitchen is filled with easy to follow recipes inspired by the diets and cooking methods selected from five different Blue Zones. Blue Zones are areas around the world that have an unusually high percentage of centenarians and share common healthy lifestyle habits. Dan Buettner, a longevity researcher and National Geographic Fellow, has devoted twenty years to studying the health habits of the regions with official Blue Zone status: Oglisastra Region, Italy, Okinawa, Japan, Loma Linda, California, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica and Ikaria, Greece.
With something for every palette, Buettner has included meals that use key ‘longevity’ ingredients and lifestyle tips for healthy living from each region. In addition to recipes, the book includes beautiful photography, and highlights personal stories from those fortunate enough to live in a Blue Zone.
Why we Age and Why We Don’t Have To by David A Sinclair
As David Sinclair states in his book, Lifespan: Why We Age and Why We Don’t Have To, “aging is a disease, and that disease is treatable”. Sinclair, a professor of genetics and researcher at the Harvard Medical School, is best known for his work on understanding why we age and how to slow its effects.
Backed by thirty years of research, this fast-paced and provocative book combines scientific insight into aging with recommendations for how to live healthier, longer lives. Some of the more unique recommendations include limiting the amount of sugar you eat, skipping an occasional meal, and exposing yourself to cold.
To paraphrase a review in The Scientific Inquirer, “Lifespan doesn’t read like a fad diet cookbook or a ‘6-Weeks-To-A-Brand-New-You’ but rather a sincere plea for reform…synthesizing medical research, historical analysis, and personal experience in an attempt to revolutionize our approach to healthcare and perceptions of aging.”
How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works by Dan Harris
Dan Harris is a television journalist and news anchor for ABC. After experiencing a panic attack on live TV, Harris knew he needed to make some changes in his life. More memoir than ‘how-to’, this unexpectedly funny and insightful book follows Harris’ journey through the self-help industry and how he ultimately finds peace. 10% Happier manages to demystify the practice of meditation and presents an entertaining take on how to reduce stress in your life.