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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on January 12, 2012
Caulfield strips away all of the hype and promotion around fitness, diet and genetics to give the reader a few key messages about what we can really do to be more healthy. He wades through the science and talks to the experts to tease out a few central truths that can be supported by clear evidence. While he is hard on alternative medicine he is equally critical of many aspects of modern healthcare, especially the role of the pharmaceutical industry. Caulfield weaves in his personal journey through his research which lightens the message and provides a few laughs. Beware - if you justify your eating habits by exercising you might not want to read the sections on exercise and diet.
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16 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on March 29, 2012
There are a few pearls in Timothy Caulfield's "A Cure for Everything" but it is a slog through some very narcissistic ramblings to weed them out. The chapters on Fitness and Diet are very good and insightful, but the Remedies and Magic chapters less so and more of a rant againts big Pharma and Naturopathic remedies. Not that they both don't deserve some nocks but this is a little over the top.
As for his narcissistic style, it becomes painful fromt he start. He is as interested in telling stories of his personal travels aaround the work and how important he is as a lecturer as he is teaching us about the premise of the book. He even manages to work in details about a cruies he and his family went on.....please. He writes a book supposedly based on science and then makes a foolish statement about his wife, who is a GP, being one of the best doctors in Canada and perhaps the world. Now where is the science in that self gratifying statement ? And how the last paragraph got past the editor is beyond me, describing how much he enjoyed his son's birthday party, what does that have to do with the premise of the book?
It seems as if he could not decide whether to write an autobiography or a book on the ailments and their scientific cures or myths so just combined the two.
As stated, there are some areas of interest but be prepared to hear all about
Timothy Caulfield along the way!
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on April 27, 2013
This was a interesting examination of the hype surrounding basic health related recommendations and behaviours. The author included personal experience and a sound examination of the science behind healthy diet, exercise, genetics, alternative medicine and the pharmaceutical industry. The take home message is that there are simple health related behaviours that we should all follow (e.g., high intensity exercise, no junk food and lots of fruits and veg). He goes on to demonstrate that, although the message is simple, actually doing this is difficult. There is no magic or easy way to quickly and permanently lose weight. It takes hard and persistent work. Although this may not be what we want to hear, the simplicity of the message means we can ignore the mixed messages that tell us to do a certain program or use a particular supplement or weight loss 'cure'.

By taking a simple approach to healthy living based on sound scientific evidence, I now feel I can better ignore the hype around weight loss, exercise programs and so on. Instead, I can focus my time and efforts (and money) on actually doing the work of healthy living. The message that this is very hard work and most of us fail was difficult to take at first. However, I think that it has helped me come to the point of accepting I have to be persistent about diet and exercise and understand that there will be times that they are not the best. This is not a reason to give up.

Although this book is science based, the author has made it a good read for the average person by providing good explanations as well as his (often humorous) personal experience related to each section of the book
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on October 10, 2015
The title says it all. Stay moving, stay active, stay alive longer.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on April 26, 2013
There is no shortage of health based books that preach the mantra "exercise more, eat less". This book is no exception. What sets this book apart from all others is the blend of science with style and candour. Professor Caulfield takes on the health industry with a ruthlessly empirical approach. While keeping an open mind he puts theories to the test (using himself as a guinea pig) and reports the facts. No recommendation is made until the scientific evidence supports the conclusion. To convey his message, Professor Caulfield employs a self-effacing, intimate and humorous style. There are some surprising revelations, a hint of conspiracy and even a few cliff-hangers, making this book read more like a spy novel than a fitness manual. Professor Caulfield confirms what you likely already know: that there are no quick fixes. He makes it clear, though, that if you are broken, you can be fixed and you hold the key to the cure. A very worthy read, indeed.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 5, 2015
This book was suggested to me by a fellow runner long distance runner.

For some time now I had been trying to penetrate the massive amount of health information out there that is constantly vying for our attention. Some of it is true. Some of it is false. Most of it you scratch your head and ask yourself where do you begin to challenge it?

This is a book about the journey that most middle aged athletic people want to make but don't have the time. This book explodes a lot of myths. But the troubling part is that the truth is really, really simple. If you want to be 'healthy' then you need to lift weights, do HIIT, eat fruits, vegetables and some meat.

The really, really troubling message this book leaves you with is that if you are in your forties, then you need to eat healthy, work out and learn to eat half the amount of food you currently eat.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 15, 2014
I am sure there will be many people that find it difficult to accept when he debunks magic processes and things to take. I found it refreshing.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 20, 2012
The book gives an excellent insight as well as information on diet. It is gifted with personality as well as fact.
While the above is true for the first half of the book, dealing as it does with an individual's efforts, the second
part falls into generalized discussion about what society needs, rather than one person's individual need.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on August 2, 2012
This author makes some good points about the diet, fitness and pharma industries so it is worth a read for that reason. However, he also engages in some of the very weak rationalizations that he criticizes those industries for and for that reason I say take his advice about considering what you read, hear, think about any health item with great care and consider whether the source is credible. For this book, I will say that he misses the mark on several key points and his emphatic commentary that there is only one way to be healthy is wrongheaded. His outright dismissal of Pilates based on an erroneous belief is bizarre for a professor of his experience and suggests to me that he did not spend more than a minute thinking about what he wrote. In addition all the 'experts' he talked to (including himself) make their living from some form of health related product, service, research, consultation. It isn't possible to claim they do not each have their own bias. I think at the end of the day that each person must decide what health/fitness means to them and determine how they will achieve it based on what works for them. Mr. Caulfield refers to the awareness that marketing/advertising and the human desire to be attractive make us prey to junk science but in my opinion he completely misses the mark by assuming that we are not aware of this. Some people are naive and some people want to believe in the easy or magic fix, but most people sooner or later figure out what is pure bunk and what might make a difference. His proposal that the placebo effect is a primary driver of why people believe certain things work is overhyped - and feeds his overall tone that most people are imagining the aid given. And let us not deride the value of the placebo effect even when that is the real action in an intervention-if it works-use it; caveat to that of course is don't charge mega dollars for it :-)

Overall I was disappointed that a professor would fall prey to authoring a book that mimics the hype he is trying to unveil; but hey, I bet lots of people will read it. And no, I don't work in any health/fitness/diet industry so my perspective is not skewed by my income source.
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5 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 19, 2013
Dry, witty, informative???? Caulfield is a lawyer. He is not a biochemist, a scientist, or a doctor. His biggest concern is his weight, which puts a teenage spin on the whole dissertation. It's frightening to me that he believes what he thinks, that "obesity causes inactivity; inactivity does not cause obesity", (Really?) and that by choking back a bottle of homeopathic sleeping pills with no results, casts a grave shadow on alternative medicine. Where is the 'science' in this book? This is the contribution by the Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy? Scary.
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