cover image Go Wild: Free Your Body and Mind from the Afflictions of Civilization

Go Wild: Free Your Body and Mind from the Afflictions of Civilization

John J. Ratey, M.D., and Richard Manning. Little, Brown, $27 (288p) ISBN 978-0-316-24609-5

In this inspiring book, Harvard Medical School professor Ratey (Spark) and journalist Manning (It Runs in the Family) outline the mental and physical benefits of living more like our hunter-gatherer ancestors. Citing major research studies, the authors see such health problems as obesity, inactivity, and high blood sugar as “‘afflictions of civilization.’” They examine humanity’s biochemical and evolutionary modes of well-being, and encourage readers to “go wild” because “human evolution occurred under wild conditions, and this made us who we are.” Their key point: “evolution has hard-wired health to happiness.” Though there are many other titles on the paleo diet and low-carb nutrition lists, readers will appreciate the considerable attention given to the importance of movement and discussion of research on the design of the human body; neuroscience indicates that “the whole brain flourishes as a result of movement.” The authors build on research about diet and movement with examinations of sleep, awareness, and the importance of connection to both nature and one another. They do not describe a specific wellness program, but, instead, urge readers to begin “a process of discovery” into their own health—one that will surely benefit from using this book as a catalyst. (June)