Book Review: When The Body Says No

I just returned from a week long vacation in Los Angeles and was able to do a lot of self care and relaxing before starting to study for board exams. I cannot tell you the last time I was able to spend an entire week just focusing on myself. While away I finished reading Dr. Gabor Mate's When the Body Says No: The Cost of Hidden Stress. This book is mostly case-based and discusses the importance of saying "no" and taking time to put yourself first and listening to your body. Gabor Mate is a medical doctor who appreciates the mind-body connection and understands its critical importance in contributing to disease and dysfunction.

Even though the book is written by an MD and is mostly case-based, all medical definitions are defined, which makes this book a great read for everyone.


I really connected with the book. Being a full-time student for the majority of my life has really made it difficult to say "no" as there has always been something I should be learning, studying or reviewing. However, being a naturopathic medical student, we learn so much about the mind-body connect and the importance of taking care of yourself before you can take care of others. The book has allowed me to reconnect with the statement, "practice what you preach."  


Our bodies respond to stress, whether it is self-imposed or externally imposed, and there is a limit to how much stress our bodies can handle until it turns that stress into dysfunction and eventually contributes to disease. If you believe in the relationship between chronic stress and illness or if you harbor doubts about this connection - this book is for you. 


Our bodies are constantly responding to experiences, emotions and thoughts that we are both aware and unaware of. Most people try to manage stress or even block out stress but eventually the body cannot take anymore and it forces us to slow down or stop. In the book, Gabor Mate discusses the nervous system and its connection to gut health. The intestinal tract or the gut is more than a digestive organ. It is a sensory apparatus that has a nervous system. The nervous system is strongly influenced by our emotions. Most people intuitively understand the terms "gut wrenching" or "gut feeling." These feelings, whether pleasant or unpleasant, are part of the body's normal response to our environment. They help us interpret what is happening around us and whether it is a safe or dangerous experience. 

Stress and emotion are words we often evoke without a precise understanding of its meaning. This book will educate you on becoming more aware of the effects stress is having on your mind, body and soul and the importance of slowing down/saying no and taking care of yourself. 
    
So grab a coffee or tea and enjoy Gabor Mate's When The Body Says No!

If you have read this book please comment below

Kate

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