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Accessible, evidence-based advice for those who want radiant skin.

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A dermatologist explains how the right diet can fight wrinkles, fine lines, dark spots, and other signs of aging.

Contrary to what popular magazines might have you believe, the path to younger-looking skin isn’t found in a miracle cream or serum but in your refrigerator and pantry. According to Katta (co-author: The Successful Match, 2016, etc.), a dermatologist who is on the volunteer clinical faculty at Baylor College of Medicine, “skin saving foods” can stop the damage done by free radicals, repair damaged DNA, strengthen skin’s natural barrier, and promote the growth of healthy microbes that keep skin healthy. To get those benefits, she recommends a balanced diet that includes healthy antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables, “power carbs” like whole grains and lentils, good-for-you fats, as well as herbs and spices and probiotic foods. The focus is on permanently adopting a rich and varied menu that eschews processed food and “emphasizes whole foods as opposed to specific nutrients or supplements.” In other words, there’s no magic food or pill that will take years off your face, but you can prevent the signs of aging (and probably see other benefits) by eating nourishing foods. Katta, whose style is approachable and unpretentious, walks readers through the science of skin and the factors that contribute to common signs of aging (like crow’s feet and sagging), clearly explains how different foods benefit the skin in different ways and also delves into the connection between diet and skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, and acne. Also included are more than three- ozen simple recipes for nutritious and appealing entrees, sides, and desserts, like honey ginger roasted carrots and peach almond custard tart. The author cites plenty of research to back up her claims and shares a lengthy reference list but is also able to translate all scientific information clearly. Bullet points, callouts, and charts break up what could be impenetrable blocks of text.

Accessible, evidence-based advice for those who want radiant skin.

Pub Date: April 5, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-937978-09-9

Page Count: 254

Publisher: Md2b

Review Posted Online: July 1, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2018

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An absorbing, wide-ranging story of humans’ relationship with the water.

A study of swimming as sport, survival method, basis for community, and route to physical and mental well-being.

For Bay Area writer Tsui (American Chinatown: A People's History of Five Neighborhoods, 2009), swimming is in her blood. As she recounts, her parents met in a Hong Kong swimming pool, and she often visited the beach as a child and competed on a swim team in high school. Midway through the engaging narrative, the author explains how she rejoined the team at age 40, just as her 6-year-old was signing up for the first time. Chronicling her interviews with scientists and swimmers alike, Tsui notes the many health benefits of swimming, some of which are mental. Swimmers often achieve the “flow” state and get their best ideas while in the water. Her travels took her from the California coast, where she dove for abalone and swam from Alcatraz back to San Francisco, to Tokyo, where she heard about the “samurai swimming” martial arts tradition. In Iceland, she met Guðlaugur Friðþórsson, a local celebrity who, in 1984, survived six hours in a winter sea after his fishing vessel capsized, earning him the nickname “the human seal.” Although humans are generally adapted to life on land, the author discovered that some have extra advantages in the water. The Bajau people of Indonesia, for instance, can do 10-minute free dives while hunting because their spleens are 50% larger than average. For most, though, it’s simply a matter of practice. Tsui discussed swimming with Dara Torres, who became the oldest Olympic swimmer at age 41, and swam with Kim Chambers, one of the few people to complete the daunting Oceans Seven marathon swim challenge. Drawing on personal experience, history, biology, and social science, the author conveys the appeal of “an unflinching giving-over to an element” and makes a convincing case for broader access to swimming education (372,000 people still drown annually).

An absorbing, wide-ranging story of humans’ relationship with the water.

Pub Date: April 14, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-61620-786-1

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Algonquin

Review Posted Online: Jan. 4, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2020

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Skloot's meticulous, riveting account strikes a humanistic balance between sociological history, venerable portraiture and...

A dense, absorbing investigation into the medical community's exploitation of a dying woman and her family's struggle to salvage truth and dignity decades later.

In a well-paced, vibrant narrative, Popular Science contributor and Culture Dish blogger Skloot (Creative Writing/Univ. of Memphis) demonstrates that for every human cell put under a microscope, a complex life story is inexorably attached, to which doctors, researchers and laboratories have often been woefully insensitive and unaccountable. In 1951, Henrietta Lacks, an African-American mother of five, was diagnosed with what proved to be a fatal form of cervical cancer. At Johns Hopkins, the doctors harvested cells from her cervix without her permission and distributed them to labs around the globe, where they were multiplied and used for a diverse array of treatments. Known as HeLa cells, they became one of the world's most ubiquitous sources for medical research of everything from hormones, steroids and vitamins to gene mapping, in vitro fertilization, even the polio vaccine—all without the knowledge, must less consent, of the Lacks family. Skloot spent a decade interviewing every relative of Lacks she could find, excavating difficult memories and long-simmering outrage that had lay dormant since their loved one's sorrowful demise. Equal parts intimate biography and brutal clinical reportage, Skloot's graceful narrative adeptly navigates the wrenching Lack family recollections and the sobering, overarching realities of poverty and pre–civil-rights racism. The author's style is matched by a methodical scientific rigor and manifest expertise in the field.

Skloot's meticulous, riveting account strikes a humanistic balance between sociological history, venerable portraiture and Petri dish politics.

Pub Date: Feb. 9, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-4000-5217-2

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2010

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