My Top 10 Favorite Books of 2011

. 7 min read

Did you know that the average American reads less than one book a year?

I read a lot. It’s reading that gets me inspired and excited to write blog posts. Well, reading and testing recipes, that is.

But reading books is what gives me a passion for life. Because I read every day, my brain is always brimming with interesting facts and new theories to test.

I read a lot of books on my iPhone or iPad, which makes it easy to get a lot more reading in. I love that I can just click and download a book, just like that.

In this post, I share with you the 10 books I enjoyed most in 2011.

I’ve included links to Amazon so you can click and order the books you’re interested in.

If you’re on a budget, I’ll teach you a trick I use. Save the books you’re interested in on an Amazon wishlist. Then you can use that as a handy reference for library books. I save books on my Amazon wishlist and then I open another browser window for the library and order the books I want via interlibrary loan.

Plus, it never hurts to have an Amazon wishlist — then people will know what to buy you for your birthday!

Books About Traditional Food and Nutrition

1. Deep Nutrition: Why Your Genes Need Traditional Food

by Dr. Catherine Shanahan

“Extremely interesting and insightful; written in a brilliant, engaging, and witty style.” – Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions

I loved this book! It totally blew me away. If you loved Dr. Weston Price’s book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration,

you’re going to go nuts over Deep Nutrition.

One of my favorite parts was about how gelatin from bone broth can actually prevent and even reverse cellulite.

I also learned that women’s bodies are different today than they were 50 years ago. Shanahan says that women have slimmer hips today and don’t have the hourglass figures we used to. At the time I was reading the book, I was watching all the reruns of that show, Mad Men, and you can’t help but notice all the women on that show with their ample busts and hips. I read Deep Nutrition while I was vacationing in Palm Springs, and couldn’t get over the difference — all these women in bikinis had NO hips!

Shanahan says that inadequate nutrition due to the modern low-fat diet during childhood (and in utero) means the body has to make due with the limited resources it has — and women end up with slimmer hips and men end up with more narrow shoulders. Slim hips for women means a more difficult time bearing children, and results in more C-sections.

Books About Vitamins and Minerals

2. The Magnesium Miracle

by Carolyn Dean

It was this book that sparked my fascination with magnesium. Apparently, the vast majority of us are magnesium deficient.

Magnesium can prevent and reverse all kinds of health problems from diabetes and insulin resistance to chronic pain to hormonal problems like PMS. It also turns out that people who eat a lot of dairy and/or a high fat diet (raises hand) need a LOT more magnesium.

You can read my first post about magnesium here: Are You Suffering From Magnesium Deficiency?

3. Transdermal Magnesium Therapy: A New Modality for the Maintenance of Health

by Dr. Mark Sircus

This was the second book I read about magnesium and it is just as good as Dean’s book.

According to Sircus, magnesium is best absorbed via the skin. In fact, he says that you can reverse all kinds of hormonal problems with magnesium including PMS and menopausal symptoms like hot flashes and irregular periods. Isn’t that interesting?

However, he says that you will not get those effects with oral magnesium — it’s got to be transdermal (via the skin). Get this book — you won’t regret it!

4. Could It Be B12?: An Epidemic of Misdiagnoses

by Sally M. Pacholok and Jeffrey J. Stuart

“I defy you to read this book then not get yourself or a loved one tested for B12 deficiency.” — Dr. Eric Norman, developer of the UMMA test for B12 deficiency

A very interesting book about the epidemic of B12 deficiency. It outlines how physicians frequently misdiagnose B12 deficiency as Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, heart disease, mental retardation, Parkinson’s disease, depression, or other mental illnesses.

Just think how many of these diseases could be prevented with a simple test and subsequent supplementation of vitamin B12.

Books About Earthing

5. Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever?

by Clinton Ober, Stephen T. Sinatra, and Martin Zucker

There is only one book about earthing as far as I know and this is it. I’m fascinated by earthing and I think you will be, too.

Most of us are constantly exposed to EMFs (electromagnetic frequencies) and there’s ample evidence that it is very bad for us. This book will teach you how you can safely and inexpensively get grounded.

I recommend that everyone read this book.

Books About Hormone Balance

6. The Cortisol Connection Diet: The Breakthrough Program to Control Stress and Lose Weight

This book helped me immensely in my efforts to understand my post-baby weight gain, adrenal exhaustion, insomnia, and other issues connected to cortisol. It wasn’t until I read this book that I finally got a handle on how I was screwing up my blood sugar by skipping meals and not eating enough when I did eat.

For more about my personal journey with cortisol, read my post: Is It Wheat Belly? Or Cortisol Belly?

7. The Schwarzbein Principle: The Truth about Losing Weight, Being Healthy and Feeling Younger

by Diana Schwarzbein

There are so many people advocating super low-carb diets for weight loss and health. I just can’t get behind that. Schwarzbein recommends a more moderate approach.

According to Schwarzbein, the high-carbohydrate, low-fat, moderate-protein diet that most dieticians and disease-prevention organizations recommend is the culprit that turns people into diabetics, makes them age faster and get degenerative diseases, and keeps them fat and unhealthy. She supports her theory with case studies of people who were sick and miserable on high-carbo, low-fat diets and who sprang to life when they “balanced” their diets with more fat and protein. Schwarzbein recommends avoiding “man-made carbohydrates” — processed carbs — in favor of those you could “pick, gather or milk.”

8. Dr. John Lee’s Hormone Balance Made Simple: The Essential How-to Guide to Symptoms, Dosage, Timing, and More

by Dr. John Lee

This was the first book I read by Dr. Lee. It really explains a lot about how our hormones get screwed up and what we can do about it. He really stresses that we need to increase progesterone, and this is what got me started back on maca and using a progesterone cream.

In fact, I was on the fence about progesterone cream until I read this book. Now I realize that so many of us can benefit from using progesterone cream (yes, I will be writing a blog post about this soon!).

9. What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About(TM): Premenopause: Balance Your Hormones and Your Life from Thirty to Fifty

by Dr. John Lee

This is the second book I got from Dr. Lee — and I’m still reading it. I’m not sure which one is better because each contains different information, so I recommend getting both.

Just because you’re not menopausal yet does not mean you shouldn’t start learning about how to prepare yourself for a healthy menopause. According to Dr. Lee, premenopause starts at 30. And there is a lot you can learn from this book if you are younger than that.

Whether you have PMS, irregular periods, infertility, fibroids, PCOS, or other hormonal problems, this book is full of great information.

Books About Homeschooling

10. Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling

by John Taylor Gatto

This is a fascinating book. And as deeply intellectual as it is, it’s a very fast read. It’s dense and concentrated, like poetry.

If you are on the fence about whether or not to homeschool, get this book. It will convince you!

If you’ve already raised your children or haven’t had any, you’ll still love this book. It will inspire you to become a reader and a doer, an independent and critical thinker, and someone who approaches life as an adventure. All good things!

What About You?

What books did you LOVE in 2011? Please share in the comments!

Photo credit: Reading by paulbence, on Flickr