"Age is only a number, and often a state of mind, neither of which should limit our expectations."

For almost half a century, Leonard Heflich worked as a chemist and food scientist who studied the relationship between diet and health. In addition to his professional credentials, he is also a passionate problem-solver and unabashed lover of life. These assessments come not just from his self-descriptions but are evident through the considerable work that went into this substantial volume. In this new edition, Heflich provides readers with hundreds of facts, tips, explanations, examples, ideas, recommendations, statistics, charts, and even recipes, all designed to help us live longer, meaningful lives. Almost all of the details and pointers inside relate directly to issues of lifestyle, attitude, and diet. The primary focus of the author in stringing all of these elements together seems to be to try to make almost everyone believe they can increase their chances for healthier, lengthier, and more satisfying life journeys.

There will never be a shortage of books about healthier living. But one could argue there is a shortage of books that cover this familiar, often repetitive territory in such an honest, refreshing way. Heflich offers an appealing balance between telling us what we’re doing wrong and convincing us we can make it right. To do that, he employs a number of useful tactics: inviting us into his world where he, too, once believed misleading myths and clichés; reprinting data from the FDA and the USDA; sprinkling in rational, sometimes humorous quotes from the likes of Albert Einstein, Mark Twain, and even Mickey Mantle; and sharing physiological facts that make us feel better even before we begin. “Body Mass Index (BMI) is almost useless,” he writes, “as it doesn’t adequately adjust for body size and muscle mass. According to BMI, Tom Brady is obese.” That statement alone is worth the price of the book’s purchase.

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