Nourishment,  Reading List

The Secret to the Universe!

My dad was a middle and high school science and math teacher. He liked to say, “Life is a multi-variable equation,” by way of explaining life’s complexity and also its solvability, because there were few problems by which he felt daunted or defeated. He also liked to exult: “Chemistry! It’s the secret of the universe!” Benjamin Bikman, Ph.D., author of the 2020 Why We Get Sick: The Hidden Epidemic at the Root of Most Chronic Diseases—and How to Fight It, writes with a similar blend of delight and urgency about what his research has uncovered and connected about insulin resistance. Bikman spends most of his text getting into the (layman’s) weeds of the biochemistry related to insulin responses and insulin resistance with charts and graphs and extensive sidebars and end notes. Throughout, though, he adds a college professor’s and dad’s humor to charm the reader and aid the digestibility of both the intensity of the science and the intensity of its implications—which is that most of what’s available for most of us (especially Americans) to eat most of the time is making most of us sick and overweight. My ob/gyn said to me a few years ago, “I don’t want you to gain one more pound,” and I said I agreed with her, but female middle-agedness— She responded, very matter-of-factly, “Well, you need to stop eating carbs,” and I mumbled something about “easier said than done” and thought about all my favorite carbs (which are a lot), and then kept eating them until I had gained that one pound plus more. I read Bikman’s book a couple of months ago, finding within it detailed explanations and corroborated validation for both my doctor’s curt advice and what I had discovered via trial and mostly error as I shed the 27 pounds I needed to, finally reaching my goals through a low carb/high fat (LCHF) dietary approach to weight loss and sustainable health. Practical tools and elegant solutions: It’s such a relief and a joy to find the pieces that answer the previous unknowns.