I finally finished reading The Cure for Everything by Timothy Caulfield recently. I loved that it was an approachable read. Timothy’s writing style and self-revelations made it accessible to lay readers (even those without the slightest scientific inclination), entertaining for science geeks, and informative for all.
I was surprised to learn the importance of lifting heavy weights to fitness. I am also still reluctant to accept that stretching is unnecessary. I agree that stretching doesn’t prevent injuries and I don’t generally stretch pre-workout. However, I think that there are benefits to stretching after exercise or as exercise (e.g. yoga). When I first starting seriously exercising over 12 years ago I had major cramps in my calves due to lactic acid build-up from failing to stretch. Once I started adding a few stretches into my routine the pain went away. Plus, if you want to be remotely flexible, I’m not sure how you’re going to achieve that without stretching. Anyway… this was really my only issue with the book.
It was refreshing to read a chapter on nutrition in which I couldn’t find anything to majorly disagree with. Personally, I don’t go in for calorie counting as I think more focus needs to be placed on developing a healthy relationship with food and finding pleasure in healthy choices. However, I can’t say that no one should calorie count and for some people it is a useful technique in weight management.
While reading the book I was feeling so smug that I believe in science. Then I got to the final chapters… I know that there can be major ethical conflicts with published research but somehow I had managed to push out of my mind how pervasive it can be. My smugness quickly vanished. I consoled myself with the knowledge that good science is still good but homeopathy is pretty much always a sham.
I recommend that everyone read this book. Health care professionals should read it as both a reminder and a source of information on other areas of the industry. Everyone else should read it to help them extract the truth from the many conflicting and misleading messages about health that are constantly inundating us through the media and friends.