Reader reviews for Drop Dead Healthy : One Man's Humble Quest for Bodily Per...

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One of the tenets of creative non-fiction is to make your vegetables taste good, that is, to impart factual information in an entertaining way. Jacobs has a unique approach to this by involving himself personally in the story as an experimental subject. For my taste, while this book is easy to swallow, every time things got interesting he would move on, so it seemed that style triumphed over substance. Broad and shallow pop culture but great infotainment.
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Having lifted his spirit in The Year of Living Biblically and sharpened his mind in The Know-It-All, AJ Jacobs had one feat left in the self-improvement trinity: to become the healthiest man in the world. He doesn't just want to lose a couple of points, or finish a triathlon, or lower his cholesterol.
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God, A. J. Jacobs is irritating! I really don't know why I keep buying his books, because they all follow the same pattern - - magazine writer picks a topic, then tries to milk the hell out of it, in bite sized snippets. Never developing any theme to any depth, his writing is like a hummingbird flitting from flower to flower. This latest book is narcissistic in the extreme, chronicling Jacobs' attempts to become "the world's healthiest man". By halfway through the book I was hoping for a medical emergency. Clearly, I am no longer empathizing with Jacobs the author.
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This was fun, light, humorous and engaging. Now I want a treadmill desk, though. I liked the authorial voice enough that I will likely pick up his other books.
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Jacobs, who wtote The Year of Living Biblically, which I did not read but which received great reviews, has penned another winner. In this work, he undertakes the task of becoming the healthiest man in the world. While he does not necessarily succeed, in the course of 25 months he focused on improving his health while imparting all sorts of useful tidbits to his readers on what might work and what likely would not. He also introduces us to his wife, their three young sons and numerous members of his extended family. The glimpse into the life of a New York City apartment dweller was interesting for someone from a more rural part of the country. This is nonfictiion at its best.
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While not as funny as some of Mr. Jacob's other books, this one still manages to be interesting, particularly as he explores a wide range of ideas about healthy habits. One of the charms of Mr. Jacob's book is the randomness of the topics he covers and the funny pictures of himself that are included. In the end he lists some of the habits he has incorporated in his quest to become healthier.
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A.J. Jacobs always entertains, and it is certainly true of this book. This is a result of slightly over 2 years of Jacobs taking on the concept of health, with a not completely tongue in cheek goal of being the healthiest human alive. Meets up with all sorts of health gurus, checking out, and often trying out, all sorts of health suggestions. Each month he focuses on a part of his body (stomach, heart, ears, but, immune system, etc.), and talks about what he's learned, what seemed to work, what didn't work, and what his "take-away" about it all was. He pokes a lot of fun of himself, but he also disseminates quite a bit of information throughout the book. You learn while you are laughing, and that is really all I have to say about it, isn't it?
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AJ Jacobs is known for his books about "The Know it All" and "The Year of Living Biblically" where he tried to become the worlds smartest man by reading the entire set of encyclopedias and a spent a year living exactly how the Bible says. Now in this book Jacobs tries to become the worlds healthiest man. I found this book both entertaining and informal. Jacobs make becoming healthy a serious request and enlists numerous experts to help him in every aspect of health. Jacobs has great self deprecating humor and the story of his grandfather is touching. The book is funny and helpful at the same time. If you have an interest in health, exercise and diet you will find it very interesting.
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I like to rate books the way I rate food; books and food can be (1) delicious and (2) nutritious. Some books, like chick lit and mysteries, are mostly just delicious. Some books, like history books, are mostly just nutritious. A. J. Jacobs’ books are a little of both. Yummy and good-for-you. Especially this book. Drop Dead Healthy, like all of Jacobs’ books, is the story of Jacobs attempting to challenge himself to do something very difficult. This time Jacobs takes on the challenge of becoming very healthy. Very, very healthy. And, like all of his books, Jacobs loves to push himself to extremes. (Who can forget the chapter in Year of Living Biblically when Jacobs tells how he went to the park in NYC and began to follow the Biblical edict to stone adulterers?) Jacobs, in his quest to become very, very healthy, attempts to eat right, exercise properly, experience quiet, lower his stress, de-toxify his home, breathe better, have a perfect night’s sleep, stand up straight, see better….Whew! It is exhausting to just read the list of all the things he attempts to do in order to try to be the world’s healthiest person. Yes, exhausting but also hilarious. Jacobs doesn’t do anything halfway. He is torn, at one point in the book, between trying to decide whether to wear earphones (to mute the noise of city life) or a helmet (to protect his skull). (His poor wife. I always think about his poor wife when I read his books. Did she have any idea what she was in for when she married him?!) You can’t help but take in a little of the knowledge about good health that Jacobs shares in bits and pieces all through the book.
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