With so many health-transforming books being released, WholeFoods wanted to know what the experts are reading. Here, Dr. Chloe Carmichael shares her thoughts on three books she couldn’t put down.


Change Your Brain, Change Your Gradesby Dr. Daniel Amen

As a clinical psychologist, helping people to learn is key to finding success. Change Your Brain, Change Your Grades,by Dr. Daniel Amen, is full of techniques that are helpful not only to students in academic settings, but to anyone who would like to continue learning throughout life, whether or not you’re actually enrolled in a formal academic class. Amen’s book discusses learning in terms of the whole self, including everything from relationships and finances to other life goals. Clarity on these goals inspires students to remember why they’re learning, which helps increase focus and natural motivation. The book wisely integrates the paramount role of self-care during times of stress, which is essential to overcoming challenges. Learning how to learn is extremely empowering, since throughout life we must constantly learn and adapt. These tools help us to increase our focus and absorb information in a strategic way, making the learning process more fun and more successful. As a former college professor and someone who loves to learn, I was delighted to see that there is an entire universe of information available to make successful studying possible for people who have struggled in the past. Amen’s blend of compassion and discipline inspired me to challenge myself while at the same time making the book an enjoyable, entertaining read.


Quench: Beat Fatigue, Drop Weight and Heal Your Body Through the New Science of Optimum Hydration byDr. Dana Cohen and Gina Bria

Finally! Fresh advice on water. We all know that it’s good to drink water, but Dr. Dana Cohen and Gina Bria’s book,Quench, offers novel ideas on why and how to consume it. I love the insights on desert-dwelling people and their habits of consuming certain deeply moist foods. The way this book connects culture and food, and then connects these things to wellbeing and overall wellness, helped to create a novel perspective on hydration that was immediately engaging. As a clinical psychologist and former yoga instructor, I’m an extremely enthusiastic advocate of harnessing the body-mind connection for mental and physical success. We’ve all seen and read many articles on how proper hydration can improve mental functioning–but this was my first experience of interesting, insightful information that was mentally stimulating in a way that made me excited to implement new ways to increase hydration in daily life. In other words, the book got my mind to switch from thinking about drinking water as a “chore” to feeling excited about how to hydrate my body. Cohen and Bria deliver the information in a way that felt energizing and inspiring, and culturally interesting; rather than pedantic or purely scientific. However, she also managed to make the “hard science” part of hydration relatable even to someone like myself (I’m a clinical psychologist, so although I’m an expert in talk-therapy, my knowledge about bodily sciences is much more limited than a medical doctor like Cohen). For example, after reading the book I finally feel like I have a grasp on electrolytes and a genuine sense of motivation to make sure I get these benefits through some of the simple tips in the book. Raising a glass (of water with a pinch of sea salt and lemon!) to celebrate this informative and inspiring book!


Note: The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author(s) and contributor(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher and editors of WholeFoods Magazine.