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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Time to Wake Up, 17 May 2013
This review is from: Childbirth and the Future of Homo Sapiens (Paperback)
Until recently, in order to have a baby successfully, a woman had to rely on the release of her own natural oxytocin, the hormone responsible for release, love and bonding. With the insistent rise of medically-managed birth, the reverse is now the case and most women give birth relying on artificial oxytocin, a synthetic mimic whose function does not not support mother-baby attachment.

Hard data is now confirming that this massive change to how we are born and how we give birth has long-term consequences on human health - and yet compared to other areas where science is having an impact, academics and the media alike are curiously silent. Now Michel Odent's incisive new book Childbirth and the Future of Homosapiens, sounds a trumpet - a thankfully loud and clear one - and birth professionals, pregnant women, and society at large need to heed it.

Odent casts his calm, clinician's eye to explosive effect : 'There is one spectacular example of a human physiological function that has become suddenly less useful,' he says. 'It is the oxytocin system. There are no other examples of physiological systems that have been made useless under the effect of changes in lifestyle.' A deterioration, he warns, that is now impacting the physical and emotional health of the human race. Ever the frontiersman, Odent marches into territory noone else wants to explore, leading us with a firm grip and making us consider the consequences of remaindering such a key part of human physiology Rises in autism, anorexia, diabetes and allergies can all be linked he claims, research he confidently and democratically invites readers to share in the opening chapter.

Wedged as it is between feminism's demand for choice and the medical establishment's insistence on zero-risk, normal birth is disappearing - but Michel Odent reminds us that childbirth is above and beyond normal social parameters. How the human race arrives is an issue of evolution.
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