cover image Keep Sharp: Build a Better Brain at Any Age

Keep Sharp: Build a Better Brain at Any Age

Sanjay Gupta. Simon & Schuster, $28 (336p) ISBN 978-1-5011-6673-0

Gupta (Chasing Life), a neurosurgeon and chief medical correspondent for CNN, offers hopeful advice on how to maintain a healthy brain in this bracing study. With many references to medical studies, he thoroughly debunks common myths about the brain, such as that languages become harder to learn as one ages, and explains the processes of various neurological functions, such as creating memories. Those looking for simplistic strategies for improving brain function and memory should look elsewhere, as Gupta subscribes to the notion that what is “good for the heart is good for the brain.” His holistic approach includes exercise, getting enough sleep, and a healthy diet, alongside maintaining a social life and trying new things. Gupta is particularly effective in chapters that address those coping with an Alzheimer’s diagnosis and their caregivers; especially useful is his list of logistics for those diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and resources for patients and their caregivers. While Gupta’s approach to better brain health doesn’t break new ground, his optimism and the wealth of scientific information he corrals will embolden and comfort readers. [em](Jan.) [/em]