Is it really possible to extend youthful health as the body ages, notwithstanding the damage already wreaked by stressful jobs, personal turmoil, and bad habits? The authors of Stay Young believe that high levels of health definitely can be obtained and maintained, with the right combination of strategy, goals, awareness, and attitude.
They certainly boast the credentials necessary for dispensing advice related to longevity. Walter Gaman, MD, specializes in family practice, and was named one of the country’s top doctors by the Consumers Research Council of America. Judy Gaman is a public speaker with a degree in health science, and J. Mark Anderson, MD, specializes in family medicine and acts as a public speaker as well.
They note that they wrote the book because in their work, they often see people who try to accomplish more than is humanly possible for jobs and families, while also mixing in attempts to stay healthy. “While the pressure to be everything to everyone is at an all time high, so is the pressure to stay young and beautiful,” they write. [q]It is as if two conflicting messages are tugging at the body, spirit, and mind.[\q]
With straightforward writing and a friendly tone, the authors provide clear and much-needed advice on how to find health instead of conflict. For many people wanting to take control of their habits, the first challenge is simply knowing where to start, and Stay Young excels in presenting the necessary first steps—and beyond—that can lead to long-term counter-measures against stress, disease, and the effects of aging.
Pinning down an individual’s family history and current health status are the two initial strategies, to help create a baseline and simply build awareness of daily habits. Next up, the authors propose that health and youth can blossom from modified eating habits, reduced stress, and more exercise—three tactics that are commonplace in wellness programs, but here, other steps help bolster those healthy changes. For example, finding a spiritual center and really concentrating on sleep can each have an enormous impact, the authors note.
At the end of each chapter are workbook-like exercises or room for notes, so a reader can stay on track over time. A “six month follow-up” section seems particularly helpful, since the information collected there can help an individual see where he or she has strayed. For anyone looking for a simple, practical strategy for increasing wellness and feeling young as a result, this book will be an invaluable resource.
Review Date: May 2010.