A journalist takes readers into the science and history of intermittent fasting, an ancient practice in the middle of a red-hot resurgence, exploring the body’s power to heal itself.
THE OLDEST CURE IN THE WORLD:
Adventures in the Art and Science of Fasting
by Steve Hendricks
Abrams Press, September 2022
One in ten American adults tried intermittent fasting last year, and they may be on to something. The latest research shows that fasting repairs cellular damage, improves the outcomes for chemotherapy patients, and helps with keeping a healthy weight—leading to fasting’s resurgence in recent years.
Journalist Steve Hendricks’s THE OLDEST CURE IN THE WORLD tells the history of fasting—from the ancient world (Jesus treated an epileptic with fasting) to its rediscovery centuries later, thanks in part to a heartbroken doctor who resolved to starve himself to death only to find renewed vigor and become a media celebrity in the process. Hendricks introduces us to the people who are reviving this long-lost remedy, including open-minded doctors who have explored and practiced fasting despite the medical establishment’s resistance over the centuries and everyday people eager for a cure to what ails them.
THE OLDEST CURE IN THE WORLD is a smart, narrative look at a very hot topic, offering a fascinating look at the science behind the counterintuitive concept of going without food for our health, and chronicling the author’s own illuminating and entertaining forays into fasting.
Steve Hendricks is a freelance reporter and the author of two previous books, A Kidnapping in Milan and The Unquiet Grave. He has written for Harpers, Slate, Salon, Outside, the Columbia Journalism Review, and The New Republic, among others. He was raised in Arkansas and Texas, educated at Yale, and lives in Boulder, Colorado, with his wife, a law professor, and a teenage son.