Eat & Flourish: How Food Supports Emotional Well-Being

"Food is pleasurable," writes journalist Mary Beth Albright in Eat and Flourish, a brilliant exploration of the connection between food and emotional well-being. This sets the tone for what is to come: a health book that divorces wellness and nutrition from weight-loss goals and diet culture. Instead, Albright explores how what people eat contributes to how they feel--and the key role that pleasure takes in that connection. She grounds this "food-mood revolution" in extensive scientific research, providing a thorough overview of human digestion and the microbiome (the trillions of microbes found throughout the human digestive tract) as a starting point. From there, she brings in different elements of food and food culture: growing food, preparing and cooking it, eating it--and the many ways these interactions with nourishment create neural pathways in the brain that shape and support emotional health.

Eat and Flourish is a compelling and practical guide to how small changes in daily diets might make someone feel their best. Among the countless books extolling the virtues of "healthy" eating, this stands apart because of Albright's focus not just on nutrients but also on the "circle of food, nutrients, pleasure, and connection." Eat and Flourish presents a more intentional way of eating that supports every aspect of how a person feels--physically, mentally and emotionally. And in a world that's rife with chaos, the privilege of being intentional about what and why we eat is not one to be taken lightly. --Kerry McHugh, freelance writer

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