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Recharging Your Temple -- Your Body

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Dear Dr. Levister: I have given up on my 2003 New Year's Resolution to lose weight. Traditional diets just don't seem to work for me. I find referring to books on health to be a big benefit. Can you suggest some current reading material on healthy lifestyles for African Americans? M.R.

Dear M.R. Spring-cleaning can mean more than just getting your house in order. Cleansing your "temple" ----- your body is even more important. These books written by African Americans geared to our lifestyle can help. If you’ve already given up on your New Year's Resolution to lead a healthier lifestyle, don't despair.

Menu For Life: African Americans Get Healthy, Eat Well, Lose Weight, and Live Beautifully, by Otelio S. Randall, M.D. and Donna Randall helps readers identify emotional eating habits, learn how to eat properly and increase activity, shop for healthy food along with tips on meal planning, and healthy recipes.

The Black Man’s Guide to Good Health, by authors Reed, Shucker and Shulman offers essential advice for Black men and their families. On children’s health, I’m Chocolate, You’re Vanilla: Raising Healthy Black and Biracial Children in a Race Conscious Society, by Marguerite Wright.

High Blood Pressure: The Black Man And Woman’s Guide to Living With Hypertension, by James W. Reed, M.D. and Hilton M. Hudson, gives a blueprint for dealing with high blood pressure. There’s information on how to take and record blood pressure, key risk factors on hypertension and how to avoid them, medication and current treatments.

Blessed Health: The African American Woman’s Guide to Physical and Spiritual Well-Being, by Melody T. McCloud, M.D. and Angel Ebron, discusses the circumstances that prevent women of color from getting proper health care, the importance of regular checkups and choosing a doctor, various types of surgery, (including cosmetic), dealing with serious illness, nutrition, exercise, breast care, and managing menopause.

Those getting into herbs for health might want to pick up Llewellyn’s 2003 Herbal Almanac. It contains a wealth of information on growing and gathering herbs, herbs for health and beauty, herbs for cooking and crafts and herb history, myth and magic. For tips on healthy hair and skin check out Brown Skin: Dr. Susan Taylor’s Prescription for Flawless Skin, Hair and Nails or veteran stylist, Barry Fletcher’s Why are Black Woman Losing Their Hair.

Recharge your sexual relationship with the The Better Sex Video for Black Couples, by nationally recognized expert Dr. Herb Samuels. For convenient workouts in air-conditioned comfort, go video.

Donna Richardson’s Aerobics Dance Series employs African and Latin live drum music burns fat and reduces stress. Tae Bo II: Get Ripped Series burns fat and builds muscle. Get Altheatized with Althea’s Funky Dance Aerobics.

Finally, An American Health Dilemma, by W. Michael Byrd and Linda A. Clayton serves as an authoritative guide and reference for anyone interested in the health of disadvantaged minority populations in our nation and the link between slavery and the overall health of Black Americans.

Dr. Levister welcomes reader mail concerning their body but regrets that he is not able to answer individual letters. Your letters will be incorporated into the column as space permits. You may direct your letters to Dr. Levister in care of Black Voice News, P.O. Box 1581, Riverside, CA 92502

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