Rajani Katta M.D.’s Glow: The Dermatologist’s Guide to a Whole Foods Younger Skin Diet is a self-help book that focuses on the effects that cause issues with our skin. While some aging effects cannot be completely halted, there are many ways to lessen the impact and help retain a more youthful appearance. Rajani’s approach in her book is holistic, looking beyond laser therapy and expensive dermatology creams to focus heavily on the long term underlying issue of what we eat.

The book points out how while some dietary supplements are helpful in certain situations, it is also easy to overdose on supplements, causing unintended negative side effects and potentially causing long-term damage. She suggests a permanent shift to our diet instead of relying on vitamin supplements as there is more contained in food than just the one thing we’re after “and the synergy of these substances promotes their beneficial effects.” She also points out how diet isn’t going to be a cure-all for everyone. Depending on what your individual issues may be (whether it’s general concern of reducing signs of aging, or a more immediate problem like acne or rosacea) diet in conjunction with treatments help to make those dermatology treatments more effective in the long run. She also ties into dietary changes the need to reduce stress in our day-to-day lives, the importance of exercise, as well as sleep to making a lifetime shift in our bodies.

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“The science of skin care has made some truly amazing leaps in the last few decades, with advances in sun protection, skin care, dermatology procedures, and laser technologies. However, my area of expertise is in allergic reactions of the skin, which means I’m very, very cautious about new products and procedures. If you’re thinking about using/getting one of these, always seek experienced, knowledgeable advice.

That’s one of the reasons I’m so passionate about promoting dietary changes to maintain younger skin and promote overall health: They’re safe and effective.”

One of the strongest selling points for this book is that it isn’t pushing a specific diet. It strongly promotes the idea of moderation, of not eating too much protein, or binging on carbs, or throwing them away altogether. It promotes specific foods from all food groups that have been scientifically proven to provide specific benefits, and by consuming more of these products, and less highly processed foods we will reap the benefits to our health.

Mechanically the book is broken up into main sections. Much of the information contained within is repeated multiple times in different ways. While some readers may find this to be an annoyance, the use of metaphors and using things like tables to clearly lay out what she’s already stated in the text is a good strategy to reach readers with different learning styles. The book contains a short section of definitions for those unfamiliar with terms like glycation and phytonutrients. As previously mentioned, there are numerous tables, easily laying out the recommended raw vegetables, fruits, herbs, etc. for easy access with regards to the benefits they provide for your skin and body’s health. The final section of the book contains thirty-seven recipes from breakfast items to deserts that make heavy use of the recommended foods. Many of the recipes are immensely appealing and this section is a nice addition to this kind of nonfiction work. The book is easy to navigate and is heavily sourced – containing a “references and further reading section” that spans 19 pages in much smaller text than the bulk of the book.

Overall, while Glow may not contain much in the sense of new or groundbreaking information, the presentation is what makes this a book worth reading for anyone interested in bettering their daily habits to promote a healthier lifestyle in the long run.

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