Always Follow the Elephants: More Surprising Facts and Misleading Myths about Our Health and the World We Live In

Always Follow the Elephants: More Surprising Facts and Misleading Myths about Our Health and the World We Live In

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by Anahad O'Connor
     
 

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From The New York Times's intrepid "Really?" reporter and author of the bestselling Never Shower in a Thunderstorm, more mind-opening health facts (and fictions)

In this follow-up to the bestselling Never Shower in a Thunderstorm, New York Times columnist Anahad O'Connor uncovers the truth behind a hundred more old wives'

Overview

From The New York Times's intrepid "Really?" reporter and author of the bestselling Never Shower in a Thunderstorm, more mind-opening health facts (and fictions)

In this follow-up to the bestselling Never Shower in a Thunderstorm, New York Times columnist Anahad O'Connor uncovers the truth behind a hundred more old wives' tales and conventional-wisdom cures. O'Connor investigates nagging questions of domestic safety, such as whether you can get radiation poisoning from standing too close to a microwave. (You'll actually be exposed to more watts from your cell phone.) He unearths astounding first-aid "MacGyverisms," such as the attempts by Vietnam War battlefield medics and professional sports stars to seal wounds with super glue. (The bottom line: it works, but can irritate skin.) And he looks into the claim that a pregnant mother with heartburn should expect a hairy newborn (and is as baffled as the scientists who tallied up the clearly evident infant hairdos).

For anyone curious about whether to starve a fever or a cold, or whether stifling a sneeze will damage the body, O'Connor delivers yet another winning and irresistible collection of tips about our health.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Amuses and enlightens … Wondering about the possible health risks of nose-blowing? Whether diving into a pool of water will save you from a bee attack? ... O'Connor has answers.” —Booklist

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781429984850
Publisher:
Holt, Henry & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
09/29/2009
Sold by:
Macmillan
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
288
File size:
500 KB

Meet the Author

Anahad O'Connor is a reporter for The New York Times covering breaking national news and contributes the weekly column "Really?"—named for his favorite word in journalism—to the paper's Science Times section. The author of Never Shower in a Thunderstorm, he lives in New York City.
Anahad O’Connor is a reporter for The New York Times covering breaking national news and contributes the weekly column “Really?”—named for his favorite word in journalism—to the paper’s Science Times section. The author of Never Shower in a Thunderstorm, he lives in New York City.

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Always Follow the Elephants: More Surprising Facts and Misleading Myths about Our Health and the World We Live In 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
gilicious More than 1 year ago
I just bought this book ( always follow the elephants ) here in Asia, I find it interesting and surprising.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
GailCooke More than 1 year ago
How many folks do you see walking around with a bottle of water dutifully drinking their quota for the day? Is it really beneficial for us to drink 8 glasses of water per day as many claim? Not at all says Anahad O'Connor, writer of the NY Times "Really?" column in his fact fulled collection of information about us and our world. Re the water, "Much of the water we need comes in the form of food and various liquids, like tea, milk, and juice, so there's no need to squeeze a minimum of eight glasses of water into your day if you're already consuming other fluids and eating properly." No telling how many believe what our mothers told us, which is perhaps information our mothers learned from their mothers. Whether accurate or not information that has been passed around from generation to generation has a tendency to develop a factuality about it, sometimes even when it is absurd to contemporary minds. On the other hand, sometimes those old wives' tales are correct. My Mom was a firm believer in dosing a cough with honey. Turns out it can help. O'Connor does an excellent job of debunking some myths and giving others scientific credibility. He divides his myths into 18 chapters, everything from "Kitchen First Aid" to "World Health." Some will especially enjoy "Love Medicine: And Other Bedroom Matters." The title of his book "Always Follow The Elephants"? Remember the dreadful tsunami in 2004 that sprang from the Indian Ocean and killed over 200,000 people? It was a disaster of epic proportions. Yet, there no dead animals. Seems that animals do have a sixth sense when it comes to impending disasters. Elephants "are known to use their trunks and feet - which are highly sensitive - to detect and interpret low frequency seismic signals from other elephants." If you don't happen to have a pet elephant, perhaps some domestic dogs and cats are able to pick up on environmental changes in advance of a storm. There's something for everyone in "Always Follow The Elephants." - Gail Cooke