rating: 3 of 5 stars
I'd give this book three and a half or even four stars for readers who are just starting out on their journeys to health. It meshes well with what I've learned about meditation and with what other Oprah guests have said (people like Eckhart Tolle, Dr Oz, Louise Hay, Deepak Chopra, and so on): live mindfully and increase your awareness to what is happening within and without, "leaning into wellness." I greatly appreciate how Kathy Freston breaks healing down into "The Eight Pillars of Wellness"--meditation, visualization, fun activities, conscious eating, exercise, self-work, spiritual practice, and service--and then further breaks those down into activities to try. She encourages readers to make conscious choices to be healthier in body, mind, spirit, environment, community, and the world.
The part I resisted the most was in the chapters on food. I already eat a very healthy diet, so that wasn't a problem. However, Kathy is very passionate about being vegan, and I am really not there yet. It didn't help to be reading this section while eating my lunch which included chunks of chicken. I completely agree that the appalling conditions under which most food animals are raised are unacceptable and must be stopped already! But I KNOW where most of my eggs come from, and those chickens are quite pampered, so I have no plans to turn vegan just yet. Lean into vegetarianism, maybe, but not veganism. Besides, quite a few of the meal plans & recipes she includes in the appendix are foods/ingredients I can't eat because they contain gluten. (And some because I just don't like them and/or they are impractical to prepare in my circumstances.)
Overall, though, I enjoyed the book and do recommend it.
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