Publishers Weekly Review
Surgeon Shapiro (Take a Deep Breath) sets out to clear up medical misperceptions in this feisty, fact-filled diatribe (even the acknowledgment page complains that "hype abounds and needs to be bashed"). She tackles such questions as how to put risk into perspective (readers should worry more about eclairs than Ebola), how to understand the causation/correlation distinction, and how to make sense of medical jargon, with the overall aim of turning patients into savvy consumers and perceptive judges of information. Shapiro argues for accuracy on such topics as the efficacy of vaccinations (she comes down hard on the "antivaxx" movement) and shares research on the utility of vitamins (the main outcome of which, she claims, is "very expensive pee and poop"), drinking eight glasses of water per day ("follow the money" to the multibillion-dollar bottled-water industry), and juicing (skip the blender and just eat fruits and veggies). Her skeptical, no-nonsense approach and probing assessment of fact versus fiction make for lively reading that is likely to help readers make better health and medical choices. (May) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Booklist Review
In this common-sense guide, UCLA surgeon Shapiro and coauthor Loberg answer such health questions as whether vaccines cause autism (no) and why gluten-free diets can lead to higher levels of arsenic in the body (rice flour naturally contains the chemical). Shapiro wants patients to do the right thing by getting inoculations (as she and her family have) to ward off diseases like HPV and chicken pox, but she also reassures parents that they can lighten up when it comes to panicking about a little sugar. Each chapter ends with a helpful hype alert box that summarizes key points, such as More men die with prostate cancer than of prostate cancer and You are exposed to more aluminum and formaldehyde in nature through air, food, and drink than what you'll get in a vaccine. Money-saving tips include passing on the bottled water, which costs 2,000 times as much as tap (chemicals in the plastic may leach into the beverage, too). Complete with an index, this is an extremely useful, easy-to-read handbook.--Springen, Karen Copyright 2018 Booklist