Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis (MS) – Book Review

Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis (MS) – Book Review

Written by a practising MD, DR George Jelinek – who himself has MS, ‘Overcoming MS’ is a wealth of information about MS and the effectiveness of the pharmaceutical based approaches and lifestyle changes currently in use in the treatment of MS. Uniquely George Jelinek is not only a practising doctor; he was also the editor of a leading Australian Medical Journal. When he learnt he had MS, he turned to what he knew – to the world of scientific and medical research to determine what was wrong with him and what he could do to about it. That’s one of the reasons I say this book is important. Because it is written by someone who had both the means and the motivation to find answers. He is rigorous in his approach and has the background to make sense of the huge amount of data available to medical practitioners. (Approx. 19,000 scientific papers). But the real reason this book is important is because of the conclusion that it reaches and the truly revolutionary impact it could have for the thousands of people diagnosed with MS. I think the weight of evidence in favour of this conclusion may even have shocked George Jelinek himself. Because, ‘he reached the surprising conclusion that MS is a disease largely determined by lifestyle factors, and that…’ people with MS who modify their diet, exercise habits, and other aspects of lifestyle can stabilise the illness and potentially recover’. This conclusion isn’t based on his own personal experience, or even on the experience of the thousands of people who are now following his approach, and benefiting hugely...
Book review: ‘Full Catastrophe Living’ – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Book review: ‘Full Catastrophe Living’ – Jon Kabat-Zinn

Originally published in 1990 and re-issued in 2013, Jon Kabat-Zinn’s classic ‘Full Catastrophe Living’ is widely accepted as the bible, or at least one of the gospels, of the Modern Mindfulness Movement. There isn’t really a version of mindfulness based practices, and there are a dizzying array of them, that doesn’t in some way reflect the work encapsulated in this book. It is a testament to its value of t hat despite the passing of thirty years and an explosion of interest in the field, it is still so revered and so often quoted. Which is all the more remarkable when you consider that the book is basically a training manual for the 8 week MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) course. As such It wouldn’t be surprising if you found this book gathering dust on the book shelves of a few health professionals or psychotherapists. But its reach, to date ;(it has sold over 500,000 copies), tells a completely different story. Reading the endorsements at the start of the book from countless leaders in fields as diverse as psychology, politics, education, business consultancy, religions and neuroscience, you get the impression that this is a book that has made a significant impact on Western culture and is well worth the read. This is just as well; because the book is over 600 pages long and is packed full of thought provoking material. Thankfully JKZ’s writing style is warm, accessible and free from complex language. He succeeds in keeping things really simple and practical. As well as taking us through the 8 week MBSR program step by step, JKZ shares with...