Too Much of A Good Thing

Too Much of A Good Thing

How Four Key Survival Traits Are Now Killing Us

eBook - 2015
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Dean of Columbia University's medical school explains why our bodies are out of sync with today's environment and how we can correct this to save our health.

Over the past 200 years, human life-expectancy has approximately doubled. Yet we face soaring worldwide rates of obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, mental illness, heart disease, and stroke. In his fascinating new book, Dr. Lee Goldman presents a radical explanation: The key protective traits that once ensured our species' survival are now the leading global causes of illness and death. Our capacity to store food, for example, lures us into overeating, and a clotting system designed to protect us from bleeding to death now directly contributes to heart attacks and strokes. A deeply compelling narrative that puts a new spin on evolutionary biology, TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING also provides a roadmap for getting back in sync with the modern world.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2015.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780316236805
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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May 13, 2017

I enjoy any kind of science writing, including this book that connects modern health epidemics to our ancestor's ability to survive. The four modern health epidemics explored in the book are: 1) high blood pressure (salt, thirst, dehydration), 2) obesity, 3) anxiety/depression, and 4) heart disease (bleeding and clotting). The author describes the physiology of each of these illnesses in terms of balancing opposing physiological factors. For example in the past bleeding was a much more likely cause of death for our ancestors, from injuries or childbirth, so our bodies have the ability to clot and prevent bleeding deaths, but it is that same ability that causes the prevalence of strokes and hearth disease today. This was a worthwhile read that I'd recommend.


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