Reviewed by Poppy Johnson
Let me just start out by saying that there are entirely too many self-help/wellness/diet books out there, with a new fad diet or “challenge” popping up each month to make us feel worse about our long journey with weight loss (for those of us on that daily journey). Some fads are ridiculous (such as using a vertical piece of paper to measure your waistline challenge), and some are stupid (is eating tofu to lose weight really worth it if it is now rumored to be made of plaster of paris and epsom salts?). Other fads are just more of the same old tired advice – eat much less, exercise much more – masquerading as the next best thing.
The Well Path by Jame Heskett, M.D. is different; Dr. Heskett really takes the time to lay out the whys, the why nots, and what we really need to do to get back in balance. The book is split up into three main sections: The Well Path described, The Well Path in action, and another section that covers the myths regarding weight loss and how we age. Each of the 1-8 weeks of the plan to better health are described, as well as the C.H.A.N.G.E.s (Circulation, Hunger/Hormone Balance, Activity, Nutrition, General Health, Exercise) that we need to do to get real results. We are given information about our metabolism, how working out can actually work against us, what we should eat and how, our belly fat and what’s up with that, aging hormones, how to achieve ultimate balance and much more. The beginning of the book explains the body and its functions from a doctor who knows, then the middle and end of the book describe The Well Path, a tool for really losing weight, finding balance and feeling better overall.
There were many points in the book that resonated with me but several really stuck after I turned the last page. The diets and half-hearted workouts that most of us do are worthless. Real change comes when we change our habits to ones that we can maintain for the long term. Our food choices do matter 100% of the time, and we can find balance by being better to ourselves in the short and long run. I learned that cookies are not a snack, but a “treat,” and that it is easier to follow this outline for better health than we think. The back of the book also holds recipes to “start souping,” because soup is a great way to keep weight down while maintaining a high level of nutrition.
I admit, it was easy to start sipping hot lemon water (to reduce aging, boost circulation, and more), and start breathing deeper. But the bigger challenge was to start on the plan and incorporate it into my daily life. I am not usually the one to suggest this but I’d recommend approaching this book by reading the sections that appeal to you the most first. Then, go back and read the entire book cover to cover to make sure you have the reasons for the activities down pat. Finally, you will be ready and versed to start The Well Path properly. It is not a diet plan but a lifestyle change that might make a difference for anyone looking for a better way to maintain a healthy weight, to stop aging so fast, and to manage stress.
After a decade of working in several NYC law departments and teaching, Poppy decided she enjoyed writing full-time. She currently works as a freelance writing consultant, and lives with her husband and sons on the East Coast.
Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Harper Wave. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.