New Health Books – Read and Recommended!

September 29, 2017 | Cathy

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Recently, I read many of the popular science titles the library received this year to help my colleague compile a Popular Science recommended reading list. There were so many good titles that I decided to make a separate list of health books. Here they are: 


Suggestible you by Erik Vance

Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance. Similar to Norman Doidge's The Brain that Changes Itself, each chapter discusses a different topic and the latest research on that subject. Topics include: placebo, pain processing, hypnosis, nocebo and false memories.

The Idiot Brain by Dean Burnett

The Idiot Brain: A Neuroscientist Explains What Your Head Is Really Up To by Dean Burnett, a neuroscientist and stand-up comedian, covers how your brain regulates your body, fears and phobias; IQ and brain training; personality; and how your brain is influenced by others.

Can't just stop by Sharon Begley

Can't Just Stop: An Investigation of Compulsions by Sharon Begley. While addictive behaviour is pleasure seeking, compulsive behaviour tries to alleviate anxiety. Interesting stories covering how hoarders and people with OCD think, how video games affect the brain and how brain injuries can cause compulsive behaviour.

Deadliest enemy by Michael T. Osterholm

Deadliest Enemy: Our War against Killer Germs by Dr. Michael Osterholm. Several factors have increased the likelihood of another pandemic – population increase, domestication of animals, global travel, lack of cooperation between countries, and countries with marginal governability. How past epidemics were dealt with and steps required to deal with future ones are discussed.

Climate change and the health of nations by Anthony J. McMichael

Climate Change and the Health of Nations: Famines, Fevers, and the Fate of Populations. Epidemiologist Dr. Anthony McMichael takes a detailed look at what happened to populations in past global climate changes to anticipate what might happen in the future. This is a more scholarly book with lots of references for further reading.

The weekend effect by Katrina Onstad

The Weekend Effect: The Life-Changing Benefits of Taking Time Off and Challenging the Cult of Overwork by Katrina Onstad. Onstad compares the slow pace of her childhood to the weekends with her family nowadays and notes that Saturdays and Sundays are not very different from any other day of the week. Breaking news: Katrina Onstad presents The Cult of Overwork at Runnymede Library on October 4, at 7 pm.

Book cover of The boy who loved too much : a true story of pathological friendliness

The Boy Who Loved Too Much: A True Story of Pathological Friendliness by Jennifer Latson. Latson writes that Williams syndrome is like "anti-autism" – those with the condition are highly sociable. The book follows the life of a child with Williams syndrome as he and his mother try to navigate the teenage years and prepare for the future.

Book cover of Into the gray zone : a neuroscientist explores the border between life and death

Into the Gray Zone: A Neuroscientist Explores the Border between Life and Death is a fascinating account about how Adrian Owen (Western University professor) discovered that some vegetative patients are actually conscious but unable to communicate or move. A very readable book that explains the workings of the brain. Meet Dr. Owen at the Lillian H. Smith branch on November 22.

Last, but not least, I highly recommend One Hundred Million Years of Food: What Our Ancestors Ate and Why It Matters Today by Stephen Le, which was published last year. The book is a combination of his entertaining food trips, (similar to Anthony Bourdain's writing style without the swearing) and the latest nutritional research on topics such as alcohol and caloric intake and whether we need dairy products.