YOU: The Owner's Manual

Mehmet C. Oz, Author, Michael F. Roizen, Author, Lisa Oz, With . Harper Resource $24.95 (432p) ISBN 978-0-06-076531-6

Anti-aging guru Roizen and celebrated heart surgeon Oz combine their popular approaches to patient-centered care in this assessment of how much, or more to the point, how little, readers know about their bodies. After taking the quizzes in the book, readers may feel shocked by their ignorance of basic anatomy and the processes required to maintain physical and mental functioning. Each chapter focuses on a body part or system (heart, brain, digestive, reproductive, etc.) and discusses diseases associated with it; genetic and lifestyle influences on its aging process; and foods, supplements and habits that can prevent or reverse related illnesses. The book has an entertaining feel: friendly elves guide readers through illustrations of the body and cartoons feature alien creatures that enter the body and cause illness. The humor is irreverent (e.g., muscle cells surrounding dead heart tissue "start fighting with each other, like Jerry Springer's guests, instead of supporting each other, like Oprah's" [incidentally, the authors will appear on Oprah in May to promote the book]). Despite a 10-day, 30-recipe food plan and a less-is-more exercise regime, however, readers may have trouble using the information to create a lifestyle that will fulfill the authors' promise of weight loss, disease prevention and longevity. Even the recipes target one specific area of the body and weaken the overall conceptual framework. This lighthearted book will be most useful to those who like their health lessons served with a side of humor. (May 1)

Reviewed on: 04/11/2005
Release date: 01/01/2005
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