Books

“Missing Microbes: How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues” by Martin J. Blaser

missing microbes

Tracing one scientist’s journey toward understanding the crucial importance of the microbiome, this revolutionary book will take readers to the forefront of trail-blazing research while revealing the damage that overuse of antibiotics is doing to our health: contributing to the rise of obesity, asthma, diabetes, and certain forms of cancer. In Missing Microbes, Dr. Martin Blaser invites us into the wilds of the human microbiome where for hundreds of thousands of years bacterial and human cells have existed in a peaceful symbiosis that is responsible for the health and equilibrium of our body.

To review the book: Missing Microbes: How the overuse of Antibiotics is Fueling Our Modern Plagues (image from the book cover)

” The Human Microbiota: How Microbial Communities Affect Health and Disease” by David N. Fredricks

human microbiota

The Human Microbiota offers a comprehensive review of all human-associated microbial niches in a single volume, focusing on what modern tools in molecular microbiology are revealing about human microbiota, and how specific microbial communities can be associated with either beneficial effects or diseases. An excellent resource for microbiologists, physicians, infectious disease specialists, and others in the field, the book describes the latest research findings and evaluates the most innovative research approaches and technologies. Perspectives from pioneers in human microbial ecology are provided throughout.

To review the book: The Human Microbiota: How Microbial Communities Affect Health and Disease (Image from the book cover)

“Honor Thy Symbionts” by Jeff D. Leach

honor thy symbionts

To paraphrase famed biologist Theodosius Dobzhansky, “nothing in nutrition and health makes sense except in the light of the gut microbiome.” In Honor Thy Symbionts, the lens of our evolutionary past is focused on modern issues of obesity, GMO foods, diabetes, the rise in C-section births, ecology of our gut microbes, our African microbial origins, government dietary recommendations, probiotics vs. prebiotics, food poisoning, and more. This collection of 21 short essays is not organized as a single book – with a beginning and obvious end. But a collection of musings ranging from 600 to 2,000 words in length. Though a wide range of topics is covered, a microbial thread connects all of the essays. This decidedly Darwinian (evolutionary) perspective is a nod to the reality that ninety-percent of the cells in the human body are not even human, but microbial. This makes humans super organisms – however, more microbe than mammal. This biological truth is reframing the scientific and philosophical conversation around Who are we? The ultimate questions of health and disease in our modern world will hinge on the speed at which we discover and accept that we have always lived in a microbial world and much that ails us is in fact discordance with the once symbiotic relationship we coevolved with these tiniest forms of life.

You can find this book at “Honor Thy Symbionts

“Good Germs, Bad Germs: Health and Survival in a Bacterial World” by Jessica Snyder Sachs

goodgermscover

Public sanitation and antibiotic drugs have brought about historic increases in the human life span; they have also unintentionally produced new health crises by disrupting the intimate, age-old balance between humans and the microorganisms that inhabit our bodies and our environment. As a result, antibiotic resistance now ranks among the gravest medical problems of modern times. Good Germs, Bad Germs tells the story of what went terribly wrong in our war on germs. It also offers a hopeful look into a future in which antibiotics will be designed and used more wisely, and beyond that to a day when we may replace antibacterial drugs and cleansers with bacterial ones.

You can see review on this book at “Good Germs, Bad Germs: Health and Survival in a Bacterial World

“The Language of Life: DNA and the Revolution in Personalized Medicine” by Francis S. Collins

language of life

From Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institute of Health, 2007 recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and 15-year head of the Human Genome Project, comes one of the most important medical books of the year: The Language of Life. With accessible, insightful prose, Dr. Collins describes the medical, scientific, and genetic revolution that is currently unlocking the secrets of “personalized medicine,” and offers practical advice on how to utilize these discoveries for you and your family’s current and future health and well-being. In the words of Dr. Jerome Groopman (How Doctors Think), The Language of Life “sets out hope without hype, and will enrich the mind and uplift the heart.”

You can see reviews of the book at “The Language of Life: DNA and the Revolution in Personalized Medicine

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