SEHALIF TIME (GMT+8)



Be careful when reading
health books; you may die of a
misprint
............Mark Twain




Pinterest Image

Title: Pinterest Power
ISBN 978-0-307-46363-0

Author: Jason Miles and Karen Lacey
Publisher/Year: McGraw Hill, 2013
Rating:  Excellent



If you "google" Pinterest, you will find 101 pages of contents. Try Amazon.com to find books on "Pinterest" and you will have 20 pages of books titles.

Despite the proliferation of books, I recommend Pinterest Power as it is a good entry level book on Pinterest. After reading this book, I have not only joined Pinterest but also explored the various functionalities as described therein. This led me to include a Pinterest icon to my email signature, together with the Twitter icon.

The beauty of Pinterest is that you need not spend too much time making entries such as Facebook. There are many Pinboards for you to pin and re-pin. Follow people with good pins, websites or blogs with little effort.
Read the book and try the power of Pinterest. According to Jim Cockrum, it has "unimaginable potential as a marketing and customer relationship building tools..."



The 4-Hour Body Image

Title: The 4-Hour Body
ISBN 978-0-307-46363-0

Author: Timothy Ferriss
Publisher/Year: Crown Archetype, 2010
Rating:  Excellent

Another useless book on fast weight loss? No. At least Timothy Ferries offer a fresh approach that is sensible. Kelly Devin of The Wired Magazine acclaimed it to be "A practical crash course in how to reinvent yourself." Why do the 4HB approaches work while others fail? Ferries summarized prevalent weight loss approaches into four categories: * Eat more green * Eat less saturated fat * Exercise more and burn more calories * Eat more omega-3 fatty acid. He said that all of the above do not work and all of us agree, otherwise why do we need a new approach? Ferries suggested that because the changes resulting from his approaches are "If either small or simple or both, there is zero room for misunderstanding and visible results compel you to continue. If results are fast and measurable, self-discipline is not necesary." This sounds logical as discipine is required in exercise and diet but Ferries' methodology nudge you along with quick visible results. A good book to read on board the plane instead of watching videos or playing games on your iPad.




The Red Bodyguard Image

Title: The Red Bodyguard
ISBN 978-1840468-85-4

Authors: Ron Levin with Gerard Cheshire
Publisher/Year: Icon Books Ltd., 2008
Rating:  Excellent

Are tomatoes fruits or vegetables? They are both. Since tomatoes contain seeds, they are fruits; just like apples, oranges and bananas. However, because they are not sweet, they are also considered vegetables. The author provides many other insights into the much taken-for-granted tomatoes. Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, folic acid, vitamins C and E, flavonoids and carotenoids and they are extremely good at combating free radicals and reducing the risks of coronary heart attacks. Of much interest is lycopene, the red pigment that gives tomatoes their color. Lycopene was found to be clearly related to the reduced risk of prostate cancer. You can read more on the study on this in the book. One important note is that lycopene is best absorbed after the fruit (tomato) is cooked and pureed. The book mentioned an Italian study showing that the absorption of lycopene is more than three times greater when consumed as tomato sauce, paste or tomato oleoresin capsules than from raw tomatoes. After reading this book, I started taking oleoresin capsules available in any health supplement store. Those suffering from cancer are said to tolerate chemotherapy better when given antioxidants such as those in tomatoes. This book provides a lot of information on the benefits of tomatoes and why we should take them. A tomato a day helps you die young as late as possible.....read more.




The Black Swan Image

Title: The Black Swan; ISBN-978-0-1410-3459-1
Authors: Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Publisher/Year: Penguin Books Ltd., 2007
Rating:  Excellent

Nassim introduces the concept of the black swan: in short, it tells us we should not predict "solely from past data." He also argued in Chapter 15 that the Bell Curve is a "Great Intellectual Fraud".
What I like about this book is Nassim's writing style. He uses stories to explain his points, the one I like most of which is "How to learn from a turkey."

"Consider a turkey that is fed everyday. Every single feeding will firm up the bird's belief that it is the general rule of life to be fed everyday by friendly members of the human race "looking out for its best interests," as a politician would say. On the afternoon of the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, something unexpected will happen to the turkey. It will incur a revision of belief."

There are many more of such wonderful stories to illustrate Nassim's provocative ideas.

The Economist declared that this is 'A very intelligent, provocative book', and I can't agree more. '"




The Naked Entrepreneur Cover Image

Title: The Naked Entrepreneur; ISBN-13:978-0-8329-5021-6
Authors: Troy HAZARD and Maria ELITA
Publisher/Year: WBusiness Books,2008
Rating:  Excellent

The Naked Entrepreneur is a candid account of an Australian millionaire-businessman's journey from a pattern of making decisions based on fear to making decisions based on truth.
Unlike most entrepreneur books that dish out instructions on the technicalities of running businesses and creating wealth, this book is a real-life story of Troy Hazard, the Entrepreneur and Maria Elita, the Soul Coach.
Yes, Soul Coach (not a misprint). This is the first time I come across the term 'Soul Coach'.
In this book, Troy and Maria provide the 'naked' challenge for you to examine your life, like re-evaluating a business plan, and start to live life another way. "After all, anyone can get rich. The ultimate challenge, however, is to creat wealth, prosperity, fame and fortune, and not lose you soul along the way."
I am not so sure about the part of "anyone can get rich" but I know that like Business Ethics,we should conduct our businesses without compromising your principles. This book has gone one step further in asking you not to lose your Soul.
Another recurring theme in the book is synchronicity--all things happen for a purpose. This principle is somewhat similar to the theme in "The Celestine Prophecy" by James Redfield the story of which centers on the theme of "there is no such thing as coincidence".
The Naked Entrepreneur is a very interesting read for anyone, regardless of whether you are an entrepreneur or not.




Musashi Cover image

Title: Musashi Miyamoto; ISBN-4-7700-1957-2
Author: Eiji Yoshikawa
Publisher/Year: Kodansha International, 1995
Rating:  Very Good

Eji Yoshikawa was one of Japan's renown novelist. This novel was first published in the Japanese language in 1971. It was translated by Charles S. Terry who was a resident of Japan since 1952.
According to Washington Post Book World, "Musashi is a stirring saga and one that will prove popular not only for readers interested in Japan but also for those who simply want a rousing read." In the Forward of the book, Edwin O. Reischauer wrote that "Musashi might well be the Gone with the wind of Japan."
The story setting is in the early seventeenth century of Japan and presents a gripping flow of Musashi's search of the Samurai way, or the Way of the Sword. I normally do not like thick books and was surprised that I read late into the night, all 970 pages of it. However, you may have guessed that the book is rather heavy, and it may well be better to buy a Kindle and read it in electronic form.
Indeed I get a reasonable understanding of the spirit of a Samurai after reading the book, and my interest in Japan has grown a few notches.




Book Cover image

Title: Chasing Life; ISBN-13:978-0-446-52650-0
Author: Sanjay Gupta
Publisher/Year: Warner Wellness, 2007
Rating:  Average

Sanjay Gupta attempts to present "new discoveries in the search for immortality to help you age less today," and indeed this has been done in Chapter One "Beginning the Chase" where stem cell treatment in Moscow's laboratories and "beauty clinics" offer clients a chance of stopping or slowing the clock.  Sanjay also points out that "alligators, Glalpagos tortoises, sharks, sturgeons, and lobsters keep on growing throughout their lives and show no obvious loss of function as they get older."  Unfortunately, he did not chase after this lead to search for information that could enable us to do the same.  The rest of the book provides a collection of information to slow aging and to live healthily but these are not new information.  For example, Sanjay describes the Okinawa lifestyle and the concept of hara hachi bu, vitamin essentials, fiber diet, effect of fasting, and exercise.  If you are short of time, just read chapter one.



Book Review

Title: Healing Yoga, ISBN 1 84442 778 1
Authors: Liz Lark and Tim Goullet
Publisher/year: Carlton Books Ltd., 2005
Rating: Excellent

T
he authors provide an introduction of East-West Practices, Shamanism, The Hippocratic Tradition, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurvedic Principles, and a lot more in the opening chapter. They try to cover too much in twelve pages of the introductory chapter. All these could have been replaced by a much simpler introduction.
I particularly like the way the authors describe the impact of the ASANA Sequences.  For example,long holds and inversions are particularly healing.  The healing effects of forward bends, backbends, lateral stretches, twists, extensions and inversions are also explained.

All the chapters are well written, one chapter for each of the human body system, providing basic vinyasas (poses), intermediate vinyasas and advanced vinyasas as well as their benefits and effects.  In summary, this book is packed with suggested yoga poses for achieving certain benefits and effects. It would have been better if the instructions for the poses include finer points and more details for each pose so that readers need not seek other publications or DVDs to learn the intricacies of the poses.





Book Cover Image
Title: The Blue Zone, ISBN 978-1-4262-0274-2
Author: Dan Buettner
Publisher/year: National Geographic, 2008
Rating: Excellent

D
an Buettner identified four areas that have high concentrations of centenarians and began his search for answers to how to live longer, healtheir and happier.  He called these areas Blue Zones: Sardinia of Italy; Okinawa of Japan; Loma Lina in Southern California USA and Costa Rica in Central America.  Dan dedicated a chapter to each of the Blue Zones.  The story line consisted of identifying a number of centenarians in each Blue Zone, establishing contact with them, verifying their ages, talking with them and observing their lifestyles to find links to their longevity and happiness.
I read the book from cover to cover, but must confess that by the time I reached the third Blue Zone, I felt a bit bored not because of the content, but because of the repetition of the research methodology which was necessary for such a project.  However, after a couple of days, I was able to pick up the book and finished it in one go.
At the end of each Blue Zone chapter, Buettner would provide a summary of that Blue Zone's secrets; so if you are in a hurry, just skip to the end of the chapter to savour the secrets.
Best of all, the last chapter is dedicated to the reader and it is called 'Your Personal Blue Zone'.  Here, Buettner distilled the whole experience into nine lessons, each having three to nine strategies, extremely useful for the Sehalifs, those of us in our second half lifes.

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Book Cover Image
Title: The Compassionate Carnivore, ISBN 978-1-40094-007-1
Author: Catherine Friends
Publisher/year: First Da Capo Press, 2008
Rating: Excellent

B
etween the two extremes of vegans and carnivores, there is a sub-classification called "the compassionate carnivore".  Catherine Friend describes in this book her journey from an urban dweller to a farmer and her discovery of how to be humane to animals despite the fact that these animals are bred for meat.  In a simple yet moving style, she conveys her emotions of seeing animals being ill-treated in the 'factory farms' and battered in the abbatoirs.  Catherine argues that serving big portions in restaurant, more than the customers should reasonably eat and throwing away the leftovers, are the same as killing animals and throwing them away.  The poor conditions in factory farms result in animals falling sick. Consequently, big corporate farms (she calls them CAFO, concentrated animal feeding operations) use arsenic plus antibiotics to keep their animals alive until they are ready to be slaughtered.  When we eat the meat, we are also consuming a lot of unwanted drugs and chemicals.  No, she does not want us to be vegetarians but suggests that we, the carnivores: be more aware of where the meat comes from, do not waste meat by cooking too much at home or ordering too much at a restaurant, replace factory meat with meat from small old-fashioned farms that raised animals humanely, and if we have a choice of eating factory meat or no meat, then we should choose no meat.
As a fellow carnivore (a majority that makes up 97% of the population), I agree with her philosophy.  This book is a must-read for all carnivores.


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The Red Bodyguard: The Amazing Health Promoting Properties of the Tomato Image

Title: The Black Swan; ISBN-978-0-1410-3459-1
Authors: Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Publisher/Year: Penguin Books Ltd., 2007
Rating:  Excellent

Nassim introduces the concept of the black swan: in short, it tells us we should not predict "solely from past data." He also argued in Chapter 15 that the Bell Curve is a "Great Intellectual Fraud".
What I like about this book is Nassim's writing style. He uses stories to explain his points, the one I like most of which is "How to learn from a turkey."

"Consider a turkey that is fed everyday. Every single feeding will firm up the bird's belief that it is the general rule of life to be fed everyday by friendly members of the human race "looking out for its best interests," as a politician would say. On the afternoon of the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, something unexpected will happen to the turkey. It will incur a revision of belief."

There are many more of such wonderful stories to illustrate Nassim's provocative ideas.

The Economist declared that this is 'A very intelligent, provocative book', and I can't agree more.