Book Review: The Cure For Everything by Timothy Caulfield

Building on District Priority #4 (Promote health and wellness for all students and staff) and our Ward F&H gathering (Healthy Kids, Healthy Schools, Healthy Communities) I had a chance to sit down with Timothy Caulfield, a local Ward F resident, parent, lawyer, academic, and author of the book “The Cure for Everything” (available online or at your local bookstore: http://www.penguin.ca/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9780670065233,00.html)
Tim has seemingly boundless energy and gets to do some really neat work on everything from yoga to genetics. I read his book recently and I quite enjoyed it. Unlike other diet books, TCFE is a narrative journey through a personal health and wellness journey with a collection of funny anecdotes, scientific findings, and interesting recommendations.
It’s not a gimmicky “lose weight through X-fad” book, but rather an important reflection on what it means to be healthy and an analysis of some of the misinformation and myths that sabotage good intentions. Without giving out too many spoilers, Caulfield has some surprising findings on the most effective exercises, tough diet advice, and challenges yoga, genetic testing, and various other wellness trends. It’s done so in a fun and accessible and the book made for a short read.
The book is targeted at an adult audience but many of the lessons are important for children and families. I wish I had read this book when I was in high school, especially the bits about the best exercise. Topics range from stories about the psychology of eating, how we make decisions, and how vulnerable we are to placebos and marketing manipulation.
Tim and I talked about the importance of wellness education in our schools.
One of the important points Tim raises in the book is we as a society need to recalibrate our relationships with eating. Many of us are overeating and have no conception of how many calories are in many of our portions, and the madison avenue forces of advertising and marketing have very effectively upsold more eating and more portion sizes to us. Do children know where food comes from? Are they exposed to what proper portions are? And can they share these lessons with their family?
His book reinforces the need for daily physical activity for our students and the importance of playing hard– vigorous exercise is where the most effective gains are.
Check out the book and the video above. I’d be interested to know your thoughts so please comment below!

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