About this time of year, I start thinking about my favorite books of the last twelve months. For me, each of the books I’m sharing with you today has a connection to chronic pain, and more importantly to holistic pain relief. Last year I also shared my list with you, and here’s my 2014 list.
What I look for in a great book:
- Did I learn a lot about a topic that matters to me?
- I don’t always find non-fiction easy to read (too dry or clinical sometimes), so did it keep me engaged?
- Did I find myself talking to clients and friends about what I’d learned?
Gluten Freedom by Alessio Fasano, MD
Dr. Fasano is a world-renowned physician, specializing in celiac disease and gluten sensitivity. While he’s a gastroenterologist, he discusses much more than just the gastro-type symptoms of gluten-related conditions. This book is a great blend of scientific information and reality-based advice.
The author’s knowledge is credible and deeply detailed, and he conveys this in a way regular folks can read and learn. He uses patient stories, recipes, and even their own words to illustrate how integrating gluten-free choices in life are possible and even pleasant. Whether you have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, this is a reference book you’ll read over and over.
Life Disrupted by Laurie Edwards
Whether you live with chronic pain or chronic illness, Laurie Edwards’ story will draw you in. The author writes from the perspective of a 20-something, but her insights are valid for all of us. She clearly has an analytical approach to the real-life situations she shares, including but not limited to her own experiences. On the other hand, this isn’t all black & white, dry science. It’s about the realities of living with chronic illness, and Edwards strikes just the right balance between witty and wise.
I’d also suggest sharing this (or some of the ideas contained inside) with your family and friends if they don’t entirely understand what you’re going through.
The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo
This is the best “book of days” I’ve ever read, and I’ve read many over the years. Author Mark Nepo is a poet, which makes his ability to turn a phrase magical. He’s a philosopher, which makes the reader ponder deeply. And yet, the book isn’t all heavy thinking. It makes me smile many mornings. A true pleasure to start my day with awakening.
It’s also important in the context of holistic pain relief to mention that Nepo is a cancer survivor. So when he talks about pain and healing, it’s from the depths of his experience and his heart. From the book:
“This is a magnificent key to health: that, despite our resistance to accept that what we’ve lost is behind us, despite our need at times to stitch our wounds closed by reliving them, and despite our heroic efforts to preserve whatever is precious, despite all our attempts to stop the flow of life, the heart knows better. It knows that the only way to truly remember or stay whole is to take the best and worst into its tissue.”
“Living is a conversation with no end, a dance with no steps, a song with no words, a reason too big for any mind.”
As you know, I proudly joined together this year with a group of Integrative Nutrition Health Coach authors. Here are a couple of books from friends that I think you’ll enjoy.
I love the author’s writing style. She really knows how to turn a phrase. This is a page turner! Jen introduces and helps people with some new concepts in a way that isn’t preachy or forceful. A must-read for anyone who wants to take a deep dive into ditching the poor health and unhappiness that comes from fitting in and not following what you really want to do with your life.
This is Aubree’s story, and endometriosis the story of many women I know. Aubree not only shares her journey, but the wisdom she’s gained along the way. If you know a woman with pelvic pain, please consider giving her this as a gift.
Lastly, another book I am deeply passionate about: my own.
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