The Secret Life of Fat: The Science Behind the Body’s Least Understood Organ and What It Means for You

The Secret Life of Fat: The Science Behind the Body’s Least Understood Organ and What It Means for YouThe Secret Life of Fat: The Science Behind the Body's Least Understood Organ and What It Means for You by Sylvia Tara
Published by W. W. Norton & Company on December 27th 2016
Pages: 288

Goodreads

Fat is an obsession, a dirty word, a subject of national handwringing—and, according to biochemist Sylvia Tara, the least-understood part of our body.
You may not love your fat, but your body certainly does. In fact, your body is actually endowed with many self-defense measures to hold on to fat. For example, fat can use stem cells to regenerate; increase our appetite if it feels threatened; and use bacteria, genetics, and viruses to expand itself. The secret to losing twenty pounds? You have to work with your fat, not against it. Tara explains how your fat influences your appetite and willpower, how it defends itself when attacked, and why it grows back so quickly. The Secret Life of Fat brings cutting-edge research together with historical perspectives to reveal fat’s true identity: an endocrine organ that, in the right amount, is critical to our health. Fat triggers puberty, enables our reproductive and immune systems, and even affects brain size.
Although we spend $60 billion annually fighting fat, our efforts are often misinformed and misdirected. Tara expertly illustrates the complex role that genetics, hormones, diet, exercise, and history play in our weight, and The Secret Life of Fat sets you on the path to beat the bulge once and for all.

In Sylvia Tara’s book the The Secret Life of Fat, she discusses what some researchers have discovered about fat, she does an excellent job of describing in layperson terms how fat interacts with the body. By the end of the book, I understood that fat was very complex and it was able to effect our lives in many ways because of how it affects are bodies.

What disappointed me about the book was the way it ended, as a diet book. The author tells how she lost the 30 pounds she gained about having her third child. I think I would have enjoyed the book more if she had stuck to the science side as she did an excellent job of explaining how fat affects our bodies. I still think the book is worth reading, and recommend it because you do learn about fat and I found that fascinating.

The Last of the Tribe: The Epic Quest to Save a Lone Man in the Amazon

The Last of the Tribe: The Epic Quest to Save a Lone Man in the AmazonThe Last of the Tribe: The Epic Quest to Save a Lone Man in the Amazon by Monte Reel
Format: Hardback
on January 1st 1970
Pages: 273

Goodreads

Throughout the centuries, the Amazon has yielded many of its secrets, but it still holds a few great mysteries. In 1996 experts got their first glimpse of one: a lone Indian, a tribe of one, hidden in the forests of southwestern Brazil. Previously uncontacted tribes are extremely rare, but a one-man tribe was unprecedented. And like all of the isolated tribes in the Amazonian frontier, he was in danger.
Resentment of Indians can run high among settlers, and the consequences can be fatal. The discovery of the Indian prevented local ranchers from seizing his land, and led a small group of men who believed that he was the last of a murdered tribe to dedicate themselves to protecting him. These men worked for the government, overseeing indigenous interests in an odd job that was part Indiana Jones, part social worker, and were among the most experienced adventurers in the Amazon. They were a motley crew that included a rebel who spent more than a decade living with a tribe, a young man who left home to work in the forest at age fourteen, and an old-school sertanista with a collection of tall tales amassed over five decades of jungle exploration.
Their quest would prove far more difficult than any of them could imagine. Over the course of a decade, the struggle to save the Indian and his land would pit them against businessmen, politicians, and even the Indian himself, a man resolved to keep the outside world at bay at any cost. It would take them into the furthest reaches of the forest and to the halls of Brazil’s Congress, threatening their jobs and even their lives. Ensuring the future of the Indian and his land would lead straight to the heart of the conflict over the Amazon itself.
A heart-pounding modern-day adventure set in one of the world’s last truly wild places, The Last of the Tribe is a riveting, brilliantly told tale of encountering the unknown and the unfathomable, and the value of preserving it.

This book is a nice overview of how Brazil is handling the indigenous population of the Amazon. In 1996 in the state of Rondonia, in the Northwest of Brazil sharing a border with Bolivia, the Brazilian government’s Indigenous Affairs Department (FUNAI) found a single male living alone in the forest. For ten years they attempted to make contact with him, to protect him from the heavy settlement happening in the state. Interspersed with the search for this one last tribesman, is the modern-day story of how Brazil is dealing with their indigenous population. Finally in 2006, though the FUNAI never made contact with the lone tribesman, the Brazilian government set aside 31 square acres for him. Once the lone tribesman is gone, the land will revert to a natural reserve.

Today there are about a 100 tribes that have not been contacted within Brazil and they wish to stay that way. Additional pictures and stories are available at Survival International

The book is a little slow at times, but an excellent read and well worth the read if interested in either the Amazon or the indigenous Peoples of the Americas.