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The Good Health Directory

by Michael van Straten

listed in complementary medicine

[Image: The Good Health Directory]

The author's previous book The Healthy Food Directory achieved a superlative presentation regarding the nutritional attributes of food. This most recent title is similarly successful in describing conventional and natural approaches to the treatment of non-serious illnesses from acne to varicose veins. I recommend it unreservedly.

Contributors are: GP Dr Naomi Craft; aromatherapist, massage and physical therapist Josie Drake; GP homeopath Dr Fiona Dry; medical herbalist Penelope Ody; Dr Norman Shealy, founding President of the American Holistic Medical Association; and Michael Van Straten, naturopath, osteopath, acupuncturist and prolific author and broadcaster.

The book is spiralbound, enabling the reader to easily open and refer to the relevant subject. The chapters are divided along the lines of the body's major system: The Immune System; The Nervous System; The Respiratory System; The Circulatory System; Bones and Muscles; The Digestive System; The Reproductive System; The Excretory System; The Senses; Childhood Illnesses; First Aid; and A Practical Home Pharmacy.

The last chapter provides a highly referenced guide including: Herbal remedies – botanical names and most useful herbal remedies; Conventional remedies – common drugs and their applications; Homeopathy – most useful homeopathic remedies; Aromatherapy – most useful essential oils; Nutrition – most useful healing foods, the Hay and exclusion diets; Home medicine chest; and Useful addresses.

Each topic describes the symptoms of the condition, and then discusses conventional and natural treatment approaches. For example, Nausea, which appears within the Digestive System section, describes the conventional approach which entails avoiding eating but taking frequent sips of plain water.

This section also discusses tips for nausea due to pregnancy (eat frequent light snacks throughout the day). Following Conventional Medicine is a section about Herbal Remedies, ginger being the most widely used herb for nausea; Homeopathic remedies – three remedies and their dosages are suggested; Aromatherapy – 4 essential oils are listed: ginger, peppermint, lavender and Roman camomile; and Nutrition. There are standard cautions on each page regarding contraindications to taking medicines while pregnant, as well as a 'Call the doctor' button if certain symptoms persist.

The First Aid chapter covers Cuts, Bruises, Black eyes, Bites, Stings, Burns, Sunburn, Sprains, Fractures, Nosebleeds, Splinters, Motion Sickness and Fainting.

Obviously, it is not possible to cover all natural treatment approaches to about 100 conditions in a relatively small and conveniently-sized book of around 200 pages; nevertheless, this is the sort of book which is required to be handy in every home, especially for emergency or first aid situations.

Sandra Goodman PhD
Spiral Bound

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