|Spotlight Book Review
by James Heffley, Ph.D., CCN, DANLA of Austin Texas
in the Journal of Applied Nutrition, Volume 55, Number 1, 2005
There are few books on nutrition that I would give to a friend or family member without some word of advice, some warning that the ideas presented in the book might not all be entirely correct. James McAfee's book entitled Your Body's Sign Language: Clues to Nutritional Well-Being requires no such warnings. In language understandable to a nonprofessional, he gives clear information on the nutritional significance of what you can see and experience with regard to your own body or that of someone you lovek, or if you are a nutrition-oriented health professional, that of a client. Each of our bodies has a unique story to tell about our individual life experiences. Each story is vitally important to undersandings that person's place in the universe, and understanding our own and our loved one's stories will help us understand them.
As an example, suppose you nmeet an old friend from a job you had several years back and immediately notice a "butterfly" rash across the bridge of her nose, a classic sign of systemic lupus eruthematosus, SLE. The two of you had planned dinner and a movie, but when you get together she says that she is simply too tired to keep her promise and would rather go home early. I fyou are the insecure type you might assume that she no longer enjoys your company. If you are aware of her body's sign language, you would know the common feature of SLE is inordinate fatigue, and not only forgive her for breaking your date but perhaps assist her in getting treatment.
In the spirit of Dr. John Ellis's book, "The Doctor Who Looked at Hands," but going much deeper, this book lists dozens of signs that provide an early warning of health problems and that can then be investigated to either confirm or rule out the suspected condition. The health professionals among us will appreciate the added dimension that simple observation adds to our understanding of a patient's situation. All of us benefit from a better understanding of the workings of our own body.
James Heffley, Ph.D., CCN, DANLA