2.6 Read and Learn

The SWLL is an in­te­grat­ed pro­gram. Each part of it sup­ports the oth­ers. All of them, work­ing to­geth­er, achieve the goal of a healthy weight for life. It is im­por­tant to have a clear un­der­stand­ing of each com­po­nent of the SWLL and how each re­lates to the oth­ers.

For best re­sults, this book should be read twice. The first time to get a gen­er­al feel for the ideas and the pro­gram. The sec­ond time is a more crit­i­cal read­ing. You will fo­cus on how the var­i­ous parts of the SWLL fit to­geth­er. You will chal­lenge the ideas in this book and seek out ex­ter­nal sources to con­firm or re­fute them.

The pro­vid­ed links are an im­por­tant part of the book. If there is a top­ic for which you would like more in­for­ma­tion, just click on the link, if there is one near­by. If you are read­ing this in a phys­i­cal book, you will have to en­ter the URL in your brows­er. Be aware that much of the linked-to ma­te­ri­al is very tech­ni­cal.

By chal­leng­ing the ideas in this book, you will deep­en your un­der­stand­ing of the mech­a­nisms of the SWLL. Here are some ex­am­ples:

Carefully con­trolled ex­per­i­ments show that an ex­tra pound of mus­cle mass rais­es the basal metabol­ic rate by 6.4 calo­ries per day. Yet, in this book it is claimed that an ex­tra pound of mus­cle mass caus­es an ex­pen­di­ture of an ex­tra 30 calo­ries per day.

This book claims that lifestyle is re­spon­si­ble for 65–70% of can­cer deaths. If true, this means that by adopt­ing a healthy lifestyle you can re­duce your risk of dy­ing from can­cer by about 65%.

The Internet is a won­der­ful re­source for re­search­ing such claims. Read Appendix 5: Research for some tips on how to sep­a­rate the ac­cu­rate facts from the moun­tain of mis­in­for­ma­tion.

You can also ex­pand your knowl­edge of im­por­tant parts of the SWLL by read­ing oth­er se­lect­ed books.

In this book, much is made of the im­por­tance of sub­sti­tu­tion. For ex­am­ple, drink skim milk in­stead of whole milk to re­duce your fat and calo­rie in­take. The Volumetrics Weight-Control Plan by Barbara Rolls and Robert A. Barnett is an en­tire book ded­i­cat­ed to the idea of low­er­ing the en­er­gy den­si­ty of the food you eat. It is packed with in­for­ma­tion and prac­ti­cal tips.

The chap­ter on weight train­ing in this book out­lines the prin­ci­ples in­volved and has some sug­ges­tions on how to get start­ed. If you read this chap­ter and start work­ing with a train­er, you will do fine. However, weight train­ing is a tech­ni­cal sub­ject and it is use­ful to read more deeply on it. You may find the fol­low­ing two books to be es­pe­cial­ly use­ful.

Weight Training for Dummies by Liz Neporent, Suzanne Schlosberg and Shirley J. Archer is a complete guide to every aspect of the subject. Contrary to its title, it is not “dumbed down.” It emphasizes safety. Each exercise is described clearly, with tips on what to do and what to avoid.

Miriam E. Nelson has au­thored a se­ries of “Strong Women” books. Strong Women Stay Young lacks the depth of Weight Training for Dummies but it is suit­able for old­er peo­ple and for peo­ple who are de­con­di­tioned. The ex­er­cis­es are less stren­u­ous and they can be done at home.

Finally, you can gain deep­er un­der­stand­ing of the is­sues pre­sent­ed in this book by read­ing the pro­vid­ed ref­er­ences. These are in the form “PMID 15640513” and re­fer to ar­ti­cles in a database main­tained by the US gov­ern­ment. To ac­cess the ref­er­ence, en­ter:


in your web brows­er. This par­tic­u­lar ref­er­ence dis­cuss­es the ad­e­qua­cy of the gov­ern­ment’s rec­om­men­da­tion for pro­tein in­take.

Other ref­er­ences are in the form “PMC 3227989” and they are ref­er­enced as:


If you are read­ing this book on an e-read­er that can ac­cess the Internet, just touch the link and the ar­ti­cle will ap­pear on your screen.

The com­pan­ion web­site to this book is:


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