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Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers: Guide to Stress, Stress-related Diseases and Coping ("Scientific American" Library) Perfect Paperback – 8 Jul 1998

4.8 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Perfect Paperback: 445 pages
  • Publisher: W.H.Freeman & Co Ltd; 2nd Revised edition edition (8 July 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0716732106
  • ISBN-13: 978-0716732105
  • Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 3.2 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 456,602 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Amazon Review

Why don't zebras get ulcers--or heart disease, diabetes and other chronic diseases--when people do? In a fascinating look at the science of stress, biologist Robert Sapolsky presents an intriguing case: that people develop such diseases partly because our bodies aren't designed for the constant stresses of a modern-day life--like sitting in daily traffic jams or growing up in poverty. Rather, they seem more built for the kind of short-term stress faced by a zebra--like outrunning a lion.

With wit, graceful writing and a sprinkling of Far Side cartoons, Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers makes understanding the science of stress an adventure in discovery.

This book is a primer about stress, stress-related disease, and the mechanisms of coping with stress. How is it that our bodies can adapt to some stressful emergencies, while other ones make us sick? Why are some of us especially vulnerable to stress-related diseases, and what does that have to do with our personalities?
Sapolsky, a Stanford University neuroscientist, explores the role of stress in heart disease, diabetes, growth retardation, memory loss and autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis. He cites tantalising studies of hyenas, baboons and rodents, as well as of people of different cultures, to vividly make his points. And Sapolsky concludes with a hopeful chapter, titled "Managing Stress". Although he doesn't subscribe to the school of thought that hope cures all disease, Sapolsky highlights the studies that suggest we do have some control over stress-related ailments, based on how we perceive the stress and the kinds of social support we have. --Christine Buckland

Review

"Sapolsky is one of the best science writers of our time."--Oliver Sacks

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Format: Perfect Paperback
I had the fortune of being introduced to Robert Sapolsky during a lecture he gave to a business course I was attending. Reading his book, I was pleased that his fabulous story telling skills had translated so well to print. His dry humour and alert eye for the unusual guides the reader through the anatomy of stress leaving the reader with a new understanding of what happens to us. I especially enjoy Sapolsky's comparisons between humans and baboons, whom he studies a quarter of the year as well as being professor in biology and neurology at Stanford University. An example of this is that people who work in badly paid jobs, under bullying seniors have a tendency to suffer ulcers.... just like a lowly baboon constantly being picked on.
After taking us through the results of stress - impotence, weight problems, reduced growth, heart trouble and much more - the book thankfully ends with some well researched tips on how to cope with stress... like a zebra.
This is a book that I would read again, just for the entertainment value, and never cease to recommend to friends and colleagues.
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This is a great book that meets the title's promise: hard scientific information plus a good dose of humour, a rare combination in the scientific world. If your work entails looking at the impact of stress on people, you are just interested in how stress hits yourself or you are working therapeutically with stressed patients this is an essential read. Thank you for recommending it Bud Weiss! A fellow Buteyko Educator in New York put me onto it after his meeting with the author.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
The book goes through all the physiological signs of stress both in humans and animal, and shows how they are connected. The author tells about the experiments that has been made and why. Over and over again he tells how inconveniently the stress response is for humans in the Western world today. Unfortunately, he goes not give many ideas on how to avoid it or make it better.
The book is mostly for professional persons, who are interested in all the physiological names and functions. This is not a book for people just interested in how stress works, because of all the latin and theories.
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Read this to realise how our lives mess with our bodies.

I benefited from some eye-opening perspective and now understand a lot more behind the physiology of my stress.
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an interesting read.
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