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Biochemical Individuality Paperback – September 11, 1998
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Dr. Williams conducted his own studies, as well as drawing on the work of others, to show that each of us is different. One chapter describes differences in anatomy, outlining how even such vital organs as hearts and stomachs vary in size, shape, and physical location from person to person.
The chapter on pharmacology explains how, even though the chemistry of each is known, drugs effect people in different ways, due to differences in body chemistry. That's why what works for one person doesn't necessarily work for another.
Dr. Williams says that "while the same physical mechanisms and the same metabolic processes are operating in all human bodies, the structures are sufficiently diverse [that] the sum total of all the reactions taking place in one individual's body may be very different from those taking place in the body of another individual of the same age, sex, and body size."
His observations led Dr. Williams to theorize that each individual also had unique nutritional needs, and that determining and meeting those needs would help combat disease.
Although written in academic language, Biochemical Individuality is of interest all readers who recognize "there is no such thing as a truly 'normal' individual" and that people have "unique biochemical profiles based upon their own genetic structure, nutrition, and environment."
Unless you have a rather uncommon interest in anatomical or biochemical trivia, the literal contents of this book will probably not interest you. After all, how many people are interested by how many different stomach shapes there are, and how common they are? But if you are -at all- interested by medicine, and the more philosophical questions that medicine raises, the implications of the contents of this book will probably be of great interest to you, and quite likely prompt you to reconsider some of your beliefs and understanding of medicine.
Williams' exhaustive lists of all the differences in the human body is in stark contradiction to the reductionistic medical thinking, where diseases are often diagnosed by checklist-based symptom clusters and then treated with one size fits all "blockbuster" drugs. After having read, perhaps at times even slogged through, all the differences that Williams lists, you are left with no room to doubt that the differences among human beings are so great that medicine ought to be geared towards noting the differences among humans, and devising individualized treatment regimens that take advantage of these differences, rather than forcing human beings into "one size fits all" "production line" medicine, as often happens when medicine is reduced to standardized treatment algorithms that (sometimes) flowchart into one of a handful of "blockbuster" medications, based on studies reported by researchers oftentimes wearing the rosiest of sunglasses.Read more ›
Biochemical individuality is the concept that the nutritional and chemical make-up of each person is unique and that dietary and other needs therefore vary from person to person. People have unique biochemical profiles based upon their own genetic structure, nutrition, and environment. Some of these variables can also change over time.
The book `Biochemical Individuality' was first published by Dr. Roger J. Williams in 1956. Jeffrey S. Bland Ph.D., who writes the introduction for the 1988 reissue of the book, explains that Dr. Williams was the first to recognize all humans differ biochemically from others, and to recognize that nutritional status can influence the expression of genetic characteristics.
Jeffrey Bland Ph.D. writes,
"Aberrant genes do not, in and of themselves, cause disease. By and large their impact on an individual's health is minimal until the person is plunged into a harmful environment. . . . The list of common diseases which has its roots in this genetic soil is growing almost daily. . . . How many human ills will be added to the list is unknown, although some contend that almost every disorder compromising a full and healthy four score and ten years of life can be traced in one way or another to this genetic variability.
The first major breakthrough that resulted in this revolutionary change in thinking about the origin of disease was the recognition that we are much more different biochemically than was previously acknowledged. Dr. Williams in Biochemical Individuality pioneered this revolution in thinking forty years ago.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Easy to understand and lends to a greater understanding of the human body and the value of nutrients.Published 2 months ago by Erin B.
Williams' book has such extraordinary impact on our basic understanding of individuality because the drawings provide such vividly graphic demonstrations of the huge size... Read morePublished 13 months ago by lpalmer77
Lots of good ideas, but the over-emphasis on structured writing takes away from the potential that the book has.Published 13 months ago by Lynn M. Stewart
A very important book that should be read with the author's, 'You Are Extraordinary'. The philosophical implications are very important for anyone considering himself to have an... Read morePublished on June 1, 2014 by Ronin
The book is outdated and describes common place material. This is so seventies. There must be better books out there.Published on May 24, 2013 by Steve
Thank you! A wonderful insight into the world of genetics and how they determine what we are capable of eating and doing.Published on January 23, 2013 by steven
This book was a gift to our 24-year-old grand-daughter. Even though we were a little late ordering it for her birthday, it arrived in plenty of time to be enjoyed on her special... Read morePublished on May 18, 2012 by Desert Rat
While I knew we were unique right down to our fingerprints, until I read "Biochemical Individuality," by Roger J. Williams I didn't realize just how different we all are. Read morePublished on September 25, 2011 by Seaotter