Books are a usual favorite on most people’s gift list as they are suitable for any occasion and you can find something to please almost anyone.
For those family and friends that are interested in health, why not give them a book that will really rock their world?
I’ve been asked several times in recent weeks which health books are my personal favorites, so I thought I’d list my Top Ten and give you the reasons why each particular book was a game changer for me.
Top Books to Consider for a Healthier Lifestyle
Juicing for Life by Cherie Calbom
Ok, I know. Juicing is not the wellness silver bullet that it is cracked up to be in the health community and veggie juicing has the potential to be nothing but a huge blood sugar spike unless you stir in some cream to lower the glycemic index like the French traditionally practice with their raw carrot juice.
But, twenty years ago when I was a stressed-out corporate rat, living out of suitcases and constantly flying all over the place, juicing really saved my life and this particular book was my juicing bible.
I’ve written before about my problem with panic attacks in my 20’s that was triggered by my “burn the candle at both ends” corporate lifestyle. Vegetable juicing provided the much-needed minerals I required to get through this unhealthy period in my life until I was able to slow down, get a life, and start doing some actual cooking for myself.
Even now, I use vegetable juicing as a way to get a lot of easy to absorb minerals if I’m on the road and don’t have access to homemade bone broth, an even better source of easily assimilated minerals (see free video library on this blog for how to’s). The difference now is that I drink my fresh veggie juice with some fat to improve absorption and prevent the blood sugar spike!
The Untold Story of Milk by Dr. Ron Schmid
When I was new to raw dairy and still a little unsure about my decision 10 years ago, this book by Dr. Ron Schmid made all the difference. This book provides a comprehensive history of milk and how pasteurization came into favor. If you think raw milk is unsafe, this book will change your mind.
In short, the detail provided in this book is sure to overcome the deep-seated propaganda against raw milk that has been purposely sown in your brain by Big Dairy via government and conventional medical authorities to protect market share and profits. You will never look at milk the same again after reading this amazing story.
Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year by Susun Weed
This book is absolutely essential for the woman who desires a medication-free prenatal and birth experience. I can’t tell you how much I referred to this book, almost on a daily basis, when I was planning a pregnancy, pregnant, or breastfeeding.
Knowing how to properly and successfully use herbs to assist your body through the very challenging physical experience of pregnancy, birth, and labor is information that you can’t put a price on.
My Mom always likes to tell me that having a baby is like running a marathon that never ends. How true! This book will show you how to navigate that experience and not damage your body in the process.
The Secret Life of the Unborn Child by Thomas Verny
This book describes life from the perspective of an unborn baby and it will rock your world! I attribute what I learned in this book to my very important decision to not have any ultrasounds or subject myself or my baby to any unnecessary testing during my pregnancies.
For example, over 50 causal Chinese studies performed as a result of its one-child policy demonstrate without a shadow of a doubt that ultrasounds are dangerous for the unborn fetus. This usually unnecessary procedure is a contributor to the explosion of speech impediments and non-genetic left-handedness (an indicator of brain damage) as well as many more conditions that were rare a generation ago but are commonplace now.
This book is a great read for any parent to be and will change how you feel about your pregnancy.
Cooking For Life: Ayurvedic Recipes for Good Food and Good Health by Linda Banchek
This book was my very first cookbook if you can believe that! I bought it at the suggestion of my Ayurvedic/MD physician who was helping me implement some very important lifestyle changes at the time to help me deal with my totally stressed out corporate life many years ago. Ayurvedic style Indian cooking was my very first foray into the world of traditional cooking and it really got the snowball rolling for me.
After learning Ayurvedic cooking, it was a very natural step to learn traditional cooking from other cultures as well.
The Truth about Children’s Health by Robert Bernardini
This is a great book to debunk all the common myths about children’s health such as fevers are bad and ear infections should be treated with antibiotics. If you are an out of the box thinker and not given to “monkey see, monkey do” type of behavior when it comes to caring and raising your children, this book is for you. It will help you raise a healthy child in spite of your doctor.
Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills by Russell Blaylock MD
I first saw Dr. Blaylock (neurologist) speak at the 2004 Wise Traditions Conference. After his talk, he got into a heated argument with an oncologist who happened to be in the audience who was offended by his take on the profit-making cancer industry and how aspartame causing brain tumors being covered up by the medical establishment.
That argument was incredible to witness. Two doctors going at it about the very basic premise that what is in our everyday processed foods is quite literally frying our brains.
After that talk, I simply had to read his book and was not disappointed. MSG and aspartame (Nutrasweet) are two of the most dangerous chemicals in our food supply and this book goes into great detail about the exact process of how these chemicals destroy our brain and kill individual neurons which most likely never recover. If you are finding it difficult to leave processed foods behind, this book will give you the nitty-gritty that will motivate you into making the necessary changes immediately.
Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Natasha Campbell-McBride MD
If you suffer from any type of auto-immune disease, this book is an absolute must-read. Dr. Campbell-McBride goes into detail about how an imbalance in the gut is the root of all auto-immune illness and what you can do with your diet to reverse this downward slide in your health.
One auto-immune illness leads to another and then another, so if you suffer from allergies and think this is no big deal, think again. Allergies are auto-immune in nature and it will lead over time to more serious auto-immune illness unless you do something about it.
Hippocrates, the ancient Greek physician, cautioned that “All diseases begin in the gut”. This book will explain how this is so and what proactive steps you can take to fix yours and leave auto-immune disease behind.
Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon Morell with Mary G. Enig PhD
Are you interested in Traditional Cooking and the health benefits this can confer to your family and yourself? If so, then this cookbook is the basic primer you need to get started. Don’t even attempt to delve into traditional cooking without it.
My copy of Nourishing Traditions is dog-eared and batter splattered from being used so much over the years! When you get your copy in the mail, be sure to cover it with a clear book cover protector as you will be using it as a constant reference on the kitchen counter as you cook and you want it to last for a while!
Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Dr. Weston A. Price
Natives from traditional cultures consuming their traditional diets were healthy, strong, robust and mostly free from chronic and infectious diseases. If you doubt the historical validity of this in any way, then you must read this detailed account of Dr. Weston A. Price’s 10-year journey around the world during the early part of the last century which documents the astounding health of traditional societies with data as well as amazing pictures.
If you are tired of fad diets and silver bullet approaches to health, come home to Traditional Eating. This is how people used to eat to stay healthy and well without the modern crutches of over the counter drugs, antibiotics, braces, and fillings to name but a few.
So there you have it. My Top Ten list of health books that had the biggest effect on my health journey over the years. What health books are on your list? Are some of the health books on my list life-changers for you as well?
Sarah Pope has been a Health and Nutrition Educator since 2002. Her work is dedicated to helping families effectively incorporate the principles of ancestral diets within the modern household. She is a sought after lecturer around the world for conferences, summits, and podcasts.
Her work has been covered by major media including USA Today, ABC, NBC, and many others.