Book Review: The South Asian Health Solution by Dr. Ronesh Sinha

May 12, 2014 in Categories: by

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southasianhealthsolutionThis review was written by my assistant Christina.

The South Asian Health Solution offers a culturally-tailored plan to reverse chronic health conditions like diabetes, obesity, and heart disease in a high-risk demographic: South Asians. The book covers a wide variety of topics, from insulin resistance to PCOS to children’s health, in great depth. And since so many of our most popular diet and lifestyle books were written by and for white Americans or people who were born into American culture, a book like this is long overdue. Dr. Ronesh Sinha, an internal medicine specialist practicing out of California, has answered the call.

The South Asian Health Solution discusses inflammation and insulin, cholesterol and heart disease, blood pressure, weight, diet, intermittent fasting, exercise, managing stress, PCOS, pregnancy, pediatrics, senior health, and how to achieve your health goals. Each chapter discusses how the body is supposed to work, what can go wrong and how that happens, what to do about it, and how to talk to your doctor about it (if you are a doctor, there is also a section on how to talk to your patients). Although his dietary recommendations are not explicitly Paleo, they provide an excellent resource for eliminating and substituting grains, legumes, and sugar. The book also includes stories about the challenges Dr. Sinha’s patients have faced and how they’ve overcome them or what can be learned from their example.

You may have noticed that these problems are not unique to South Asians. There probably isn’t a person on this planet that couldn’t benefit from some kind of diet or lifestyle change–nobody’s perfect!–and while Dr. Sinha’s book is directed toward his own demographic, it is absolutely appropriate for anyone of any background, South Asian or not. Dr. Sinha’s language as an author is easy-to-understand, highly informative, and entertaining. Few people have the ability to make scientific, medical jargon not only accessible to but enjoyable for the public at large, but Dr. Sinha succeeds. I was glued to the pages and learned to appreciate things like my blood sugar, sleep patterns, and weight in entirely new ways. One of the book’s most powerful messages is to stop chasing a six-pack or goal weight and to let your labs and lifestyle, which can often predict serious health problems years before they happen, guide you. Even skinny people, as Dr. Sinha will explain, have health problems if their diets and lifestyles are not conducive to long-term wellness.

All in all, The South Asian Health Solution provides a program that can help anyone of any ethnicity avoid chronic illness by understanding how the body works and making a few targeted diet, lifestyle, and healthcare changes to support long-term health. And if you are South Asian, know someone who is, or simply love South Asian food and, there is no better book on the market to speak to this particular culture about health. And there are very few books that address health in any context as thoroughly as this one. I highly recommend it!

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