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Drop Dead Healthy: One Man's Humble Quest for Bodily Perfection Hardcover – Apr 10 2012

6 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (April 10 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141659907X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416599074
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 3.6 x 23.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 640 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #158,689 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"A.J. Jacobs is very, very bad for your health. He will keep you up reading til 2 a.m., disturbing your circadian rhythms, making you sleep through breakfast and overeat at lunch. He is delicious. He's habit-forming. He will give you infectious titters and terminal glee. Don't let that stop you. Indulge."—Mary Roach, author of Bonk and Packing for Mars

“We can become healthier by learning from AJ's discomfort in this very funny book. He moves us from theory to practice by dragging his body through all the longevity practices.”—Dr. Mehmet Oz, host, "The Dr. Oz Show"

“I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this book, and once again, the brilliant A.J. Jacobs had me laughing out loud—and also deciding to change the way I live. Drop Dead Healthy is a rare mixture of the hilarious, the absurd, and the scientifically sound. Who knew it could be so entertaining to read about broccoli puree and shoeless jogging?”—Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project

"Can one man go from a 'python that ate a goat' physique to perfect specimen? From Roman soldier workouts to Areca palm plants, from the sublime to the absurd, A.J. has tried it all. I laughed my ass off the wholeway and learned a ton ... including about my ass."—Timothy Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek

"Who wouldn't want to be fitter, happier, more productive? In this riotous, madcap book, A.J. Jacobs sets himself an ambitious goal: to become the person we all wish we could be. It's vintage A.J. Do your future self a favor and read this book." —Joshua Foer, author of Moonwalking with Einstein

"You'll burn calories laughing out loud."Shape

“While Jacobs’s attempts at health enlightenment can be hilarious, visits with his grandfather, famed labor lawyer Theodore Kheel, provide the most revealing glimpse into the secrets of aging well.”More

"Jacobs' light touch camouflages the impressive amount of research that goes into each chapter. He reads books and medical reports, interviews experts and scientists as well as enthusiasts on the fringe, then tries everything himself. He brings a skeptic's eye to each point of view, but he remains respectful of even the wackiest ideas... Yes, the results are funny, but this is, at heart, a serious book, with an underlying poignancy: As Jacobs works to get healthier, his beloved grandfather begins his slow decline, reminding us that no matter how healthy we are, it's all going to end the same way."—Laurie Hertzl, The Minneapolis Star Tribune

"You'll exercise your abdominals laughing over his adventures."Entertainment Weekly

“Why go to the gym when you can sit and read a funny book about it instead?”USA Today

"Bright, funny and even useful... Jacobs is methodical and savvy..."—Janet Maslin, The New York Times

"An entertaining guide to the skinny on a healthy life."—Jay Jennings, The San Francisco Chronicle

“His pursuit of perky pecs is sure to enlighten, but read it at your own risk: Side effects may include involuntary fits of laughter.” —Spirit (Southwest Airlines Magazine)

“You’ll learn fascinating facts, but really this book is a testament to the joys—and benefits—of moderation."People

About the Author

A.J. Jacobs is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Know-It-All, The Year of Living Biblically, and The Guinea Pig Diaries. He is the editor at large of Esquire magazine, a contributor to NPR, and has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Entertainment Weekly. He lives in New York City with his wife and kids. Visit him at

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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A. Volk #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on April 15 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book not quite sure what to expect. Would it be an autobiographical story of one man's quest for health, a joke book about our modern ideas of health, or an indepth look at the science behind being healthy? In fact, it was all of those. In this book, AJ (author) decides that he will try to become as healthy as he can. He travels on a 26 months journey, exploring a different aspect of health each month/chapter (e.g., skin, eyes, lungs, sleep, etc.). Some topics get multiple chapters due to their depth (e.g., fitness and diet). In each chapter AJ interviews experts in that area (usually, but not always, academic researchers) and then tries out their advice. AJ keeps up with the changes he feels are best, and ignores advice that doesn't come with a lot of evidence for it. Certainly, there's a lot of health ideas that are lacking in that department.

Over time, AJ's health does improve, largely thanks to the basic advice that has stood the test of time. Eat less (except vegetables), exercise more, rest well, and try to be relaxed. The nice thing about the book is that AJ gives enough personal and scientific evidence for the reader to get a sense of how helpful the advice is. AJ's style of writing is also entertaining enough as he laughs and jokes about his quest for fitness. Which is probably true for many of us, even those who live "healthy". Because there's so many conflicting, unusual, bizarre, and sometimes fake health ideas out there, it's nice to laugh along with AJ as he warily tries some out. But others are worth bearing out, and I think I might even try one of two of them (the inspirational photoshopped picture of you when you are older is a good idea- be true to your future self).

Overall, this is a fun book that will appeal to a large audience.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Errol Fletcher on June 15 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very entertaining but also very useful at the same time. Most readers can find something to which they can relate.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A very entertaining way of illustrating different health trends!

It also draws conclusions at the end, so that I now know that sitting is the new smoking and that I need to chew my food at least 10 times.

Highly recommended!
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