5 Books That Changed the Way I Think

5 Books That Changed the Way I Think About Health and Food

I am frequently asked if I have favorite books that I recommend to patients and clients….I love to read and frequently have 4-5 books in rotation at all times (ask my hubby)….these five books are ones that altered my perception of Western medicine and the general pedagogy of our food supply. I promise you will find these books as informative and thought provoking as I did.

This was the first book I read after learning that my child had food allergies and it forever changed my perception about the safety of our food supply. It awakened me to the risks of factory-farmed, processed foods and began my transition from believing in the mainstream dogma of the safety of the FDA and the role that Monsanto has forever played in our health as a nation and worldwide.

1. The UnHealthy Truth by Robyn O'Brien


This was one of the first books I read in my functional nutrition class… even after being in healthcare for 18 years I had not considered the monumental role of water in chronic pain, GI symptoms, asthma and obesity amongst many others. I now recommend to all clients that they consume ½ their body weight in ounces of water daily. It is that important for nearly all body processes and for digestion, etc.

2. Your Body's Many Cries For Water by F. Batmanghelidj, MD


Admittedly, I love anything that Michael Pollan writes, but this was the first book of his that I read… I love it's simplicity and it's message. Eat nutrient dense whole foods; eat high quality foods. It is a book I often recommend clients read to help support my perspectives on food.

3. In Defense of Food: an eater's manifesto by Michael Pollan


This was a life changing book for me and also one that made me furious while reading it… I actually sat with a highlighter and a notepad taking notes and making comments as I read it. This book had me trying to understand how the food industry has become a corrupted machine that is poisoning our nation and our children. Food scientists design food to be as addictive as possible. Is it any wonder why we have such staggering rates of obesity, diabetes, cancer and vascular disease?

4. Salt Sugar Fat by Michael Moss


The concept of a leaky gut, aka-intestinal hyperpermeability, is one that aligns itself with my functional nutrition training. All health is derived from the gut and thus so are most of our current medical issues. Many in Western medicine do not acknowledge its’ existence (I certainly did not learn about it in my RN or NP training years ago), but yet it makes empiric sense. Why do some people develop autoimmune issues after receiving copious amounts of antibiotics? The sequelae of leaky gut create system wide issues with skin, mental health, joints, adrenal health and the list goes on and on.

I like this book in particular because he delves into how to test, address and heal from leaky gut as well and it is written for the lay public, so not hardcore technical jargon to wade through.

5. eat dirt by Dr. Josh Axe

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Let me know if you've ready any of these books and how they've changed your perspective on food and health.

~ Cynthia