Book: A Short Guide to a Long Life by David B. Agus, MD
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: 2014
Summary: This small book is designed to be quick and easy to read. The pieces are only a few pages long to provide an overview of each topic and the basics of what to do about it. Although Dr. Agus admits to being opinionated, the advice is backed up by research studies and reflects the guidelines most generally recommended by the medical community.
The material is presented in three Parts. The longest is Part 1, What to Do. This includes advice like “Grow a Garden,” “Be Positive,” and “S-T-R-E-T-C-H.” Part 2, What to Avoid, suggests staying away from dangerous sports, stilettos, and supplements. The third part is very short and compiles the information from earlier in the book to age-appropriate lists — what to do in your 20s is slightly different from what you want to think about in terms of health in your 50s.
Thoughts: I got a kick out of the historical note at the beginning that demonstrated how the advice given by Greek physician, Hippocrates, remains some of the best advice today, including these gems:
- Walking is man’s best medicine.
- If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health.
- To do nothing is also a good remedy.
I’m following much of the advice in A Short Guide to a Long Life, but it was motivating to keep doing what I am doing and up my game in a few arenas — particularly keeping track of data. Everything from how many steps I’m taking today to “when was the last time I had a tetanus shot?”
The Weekend Cooking crowd will like his emphasis on eating real food, seasonal and local when possible. Dr. Agus reminded me that frozen produce can be as healthful as fresh, especially in the winter:
Unless you can buy truly fresh produce that’s in season and has been delivered recently from a nearby farm, head on over to your grocer’s freezer section and opt for frozen fruits and vegetables, often labeled as “fresh flash-frozen.” Fruits and vegetables chosen for freezing tend to be plucked or picked at their peak ripeness, a time when–as a general rule–they are packed with the most nutrients. p. 28
This could be a time-saver for me, too. Does anyone have advice about how to work with frozen vegetables — especially for stir-frying and roasting?
Appeal: A Short Guide to a Long Life is a great quick overview — a chance to check if you’re doing all that you want to be doing for your health right now. The tone is light, with an invitation to take what you want and leave the rest.
- Book 2 of 4 for The New Year’s Resolution Reading Challenge.
- Book 2 of 15 for The Healthy Lifestyle Books Reading Challenge.
- Book 2 of 16 for the 2015 Nonfiction Reading Challenge.
I’ll also link this review with today’s Weekend Cooking posts at Beth Fish Reads.
Reviews: Diane of Bibliophile by the Sea listened to the audio version of A Short Guide to a Long Life and liked it, for the most part. Part 3 would be annoying in audio — I just skipped to the 50s section in the print book rather than read all of the repetitive lists for each decade.
Have you read this book? What did you think?