Book Review: Seven Pillars of Health

How often is there some type of new trend in dieting practices, workout techniques, or new must-have technology? Every day. As a general rule, I haven’t really been one to be up on the latest trends and I’m often a step behind as a music artist on who sings what song, behind as an amateur racing cyclist in regards to best gear and training practices, and behind as a church leader in knowing the latest pod-casts and books to be deluging myself into. So, when tasked with reading a book by an author featured on infomercials, Christian television broadcasting, and general you-tube hype, I admittedly started turning the pages with great skepticism.

However, to my surprise I found The Seven Pillars of Health by Don Colbert quite helpful to my own health, fad or no fad. He opens the introduction in a way that at least got me to pay attention for a few pages. “Because I have made my career as a medical doctor , the advice I give in this book is not something I picked up from the Internet or from other medical professionals. These are not seven fads of health, or seven theories of health, but seven pillars of health.” It seemed Colbert was at least aware of my own skepticism, and so that made me at least willing to go onward.
Working though the book made me realize the purpose of his audience was for pastors and others who fall out of ministry simply because their bodies are unable to hold up. This is a pretty sad reality. How many ministers both here and overseas had to choose reduce their role in God’s Kingdom work, or sadly choose to back out entirely from the calling on their life due to physical ailments and limitations that may have been dealt with in a preventative manner? Dr. Colbert explains the body's vital need for: Water, Sleep and Rest, Living Food, Exercise, Detoxification, Supplements, and  Coping with Stress.

I found Colbert’s encouragements to drink more water to be strong ones, but I found the lengths to which he went to be excessive and too heady to be useful. For instance, “Hexagonal water moves easily within the cellular matrix of the body, helping with nutritional absorption and waste removal” seems far beyond the scope of what an author would write to the layperson, without doing it intentionally to belittle the reader.  I appreciated the challenge to eat living foods rather than dead foods, and I learned a few things about cooking that I didn’t realize: “Don’t kill living foods by improper cooking. For example, many people don’t realize that when they boil vegetables, the nutrients leech into the water. By the time the vegetables are tender enough to eat, the minerals and vitamin content is higher in the water than the vegetables!” I had no idea I was taking a “living food” and turning it into a “dead food” simply by boiling it in water. All in all, the book was a great read, but far too much detail to be anything other than resource material. Proposing that this could be a daily reading for a better healthy life is just impractical.


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