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There are pivotal moments in the lives of all seekers when we realize that we’ve been traveling on our path of growth toward happiness and fulfillment, but, simply put, we want to go faster.
Dr. Richard Besser is ABC News' Chief Health and Medical Editor providing medical analysis and commentary for all ABC News broadcasts and platforms, including "World News with Diane Sawyer," "Good Morning America," and "Nightline." He also has appeared on ABC's "The View" and "The Chew," on ESPN, and many other news/entertainment programs. He received a 2011 Emmy nomination for "Outstanding Investigative Journalism," for his "World News" story on Cord Blood Banking, and in 2013 won 2 Peabody Awards, along with the ABC News staff, for coverage of Hurricane Katrina and Robin Roberts's health journey.
Since joining ABC News in 2009, Dr. Besser has been at the forefront of news coverage for every major medical story, including the earthquake in Haiti and the Japanese radiation release. He was the leading correspondent on ABC's global health series, Be the Change, Save a Life. Dr. Besser came to ABC news from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where he served as Acting Director for the CDC from January to June 2009, during which time he led the CDC's response to the H1N1 influenza outbreak. Prior to that, he served as Director of the Coordinating Office for Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response. In that role, he was responsible for all of the CDC's public health emergency preparedness and emergency response activities.
Arranged in a very user friendly format this book could be one of the least expensive medical-related purchases you make - and end up saving you big bucks. While I consider myself fairly well-informed about exercise, cholesterol, medications, and other health topics, I still didn't know the answers to a fair number of questions in this book.
Do I need to take daily aspirin to prevent a heart attack or cancer? Should I throw out all medications after the expiration date? Is acetaminophen or ibuprofen best for fever?
As the author, Dr. Richard Besser,points out (and most potential readers probably already know), "this country is in the middle of a health crisis." But how to handle that crisis on both a personal and broader level? How many of us frequently deal with the frustrations of soaring medical costs, inadequate answers, poor health, and the difficulties of navigating the medical system?
Of course, this book isn't a solution to all those woes but it can certainly keep you from wasting time and money following advice that does nothing for you. It can even prevent a needless call to a doctor. Yes, there are the common suggestions: eat less, exercise more, get enough sleep. The section of weight loss and diet seemed fairly basic to me. But not the others. Ever wondered if you need to take a statin? Information about that certainly surprised me.
I was riveted by the book but found the information about aspirin regimens particularly interesting. As the doctor himself asks, "Who could have guessed that a decision about something as seemingly simple as taking a daily aspirin could be so controversial?Read more ›
The reason I highly recommend this book is right up front- Dr. Besser says that, in order to get the story behind the story, "I look at the research to see what the science says." You get the facts about everything from the choice between ibuprofen and aspirin to whether puzzle solving can slow Alzheimers. In each case, Dr. Besser gives you the facts on both sides of the issues, the supporting science and a common sense recommendation. Some of these facts, like the relative worthlessness of vitamin supplements, PSA tests and Vtamin C for colds may not be what we want to hear. But Besser puts the focus where it matters-- we have to take responsibility for our health, ask tough questions, look for second opinions, EXERCISE. Get this book and read it when you need it.
I always think I should buy a book about health, but always find that they seem so prescriptive and never truly fit my lifestyle. Recently, my wife who is a fan of Dr. Besser's from GMA, decided to buy me this book and said "this one is worth reading". Although I was skeptical, it only took me a few pages into the book to feel like I was having a conversation with a friend who is also a Doctor. His style is so friendly and relatable that I read the whole book rather than using it as a reference book. While reading his pragmatic advice, I felt like he understood my challenge of juggling my responsibilities, trying to live a healthy life and helps fit it all together. Dr. Besser's does a wonderful job in his book of sorting through all of the crazy messages out there and providing fantastic guidance on how to live a rich life physically and mentally. Btw, the ROI on this book is very good since he is cost conscious and will save you a lot of money by giving you advice on topics such as taking supplements to buying bottled water. I look forward to reading more books from Dr. Besser!
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