Monday, April 18, 2016

Book Review: Eat Dirt, Dr. Josh Axe

leaky gut, Dr. Axe, eat dirt, book review, health and wellness, Whole30, chronic illness, autoimmune illness, AIP,
No doubt if you've read anything about health over the last few years you've heard about leaky gut syndrome. You've heard that some of our bodies have problems correctly digesting certain ingredients - impacting various aspects of our healthy directly. And in a negative way. 

Dr. Josh Axe is a well-known name these days. And because I knew who he was I requested to receive this book to review because I wanted to learn more. I wanted to see what he had to say about Why Leaky Gut May be the Root Cause of Your Health Problems ... or mine.

If you know me you know that I've already completed Whole30 and in doing so I've learned a lot about leaky gut. I've learned a lot about healing it. And I've taken some steps to do so. I believe that this is an issue for many people. I don't find this to be hokey or a scam. I think it's a legitimate problem for many people that truly impacts their health. Do I know exactly how it affects some of us and not others? Do I believe that everyone has a leaky gut? Do I know why I might have one or if I actually DO? No. No to all of the above. But I want to learn more. And so, this book seemed like a no-brainer when it came to wanting to get my hands on a copy.

I mean - look at the title. Eat Dirt. Who wouldn't want to read a book with that title? Eat Dirt? Why? What's that mean? And honestly? It kind of means exactly what you think it means. And not just because there are earthy carrots on the cover. It means eat natural foods. Straight from the dirt. It means stop with the processed crap that's all over the supermarket. Stick to the outside aisles and your local farms. Get out there and grow your own veggies - even (we're starting that, btw - kinda sorta). 

And it means a lot more. 

Dr. Axe states,

"... when I say "eat dirt" I'm not ordering you to actually scoop up a handful of soil and eat it. (Well, not exactly.) 

I urge you to embrace the idea of "eating dirt" as a broader philosophy, an overarching principle I teach my patients when I talk to them about healing their gut health." p. 51

And a leaky gut? Well, that means exactly what it sounds like. But let me give you a little more information. I'll try to give you the basis of the condition in regular non-medical words.  

Your gut is what helps keep the things your body does NOT need floating around in it out of your bloodstream. When your gut isn't functioning the way it should be? When, essentially, it's leaking? The stuff your body doesn't need floating around in your bloodstream? Is there. 

As you'd imagine - this isn't a good thing. This is the kind of thing that impacts our health in ways beyond our understanding. Layman terms don't do it justice, which is why informed individuals like Dr. Axe are working to educate us all. 

It impacts our immune system. Leaky gut has been discovered (weird word, probably not the right one - honestly - determined, maybe?) in people who are experiencing a number of chronic illnesses, from irritable bowel syndrome to asthma - to nutrient deficiency and a number of autoimmune diseases. And addressing the leaky gut has helped people reduce their symptoms. Sometimes recover completely. How is that possible? Dr. Axe tells you more. 

Now, granted, all this leaky gut chatter HAS become a money-maker for so many people. But what I appreciate about Dr. Axe is that he opens up this book with information about his own mother. He talks about her health issues AND her eating habits. And he talks about the changes he helped her make to find her way to healthier living and a healthier body. This is real life - not just his *thing*. This is his mom's life. Her health. It's nice to hear someone tell it like it is and share how they've implemented the changes in their own lives - for their own family members. 

The book gives you insight on how to make changes in your eating habits to help heal your leaky gut. Dr. Axe shares a number of reasons on why we should make these changes and what healing will help us with. He offers up several options - specific options based on what we're experiencing in our bodies. 

Axe also discusses how all the "squeaky-clean" living we're doing is impacting us negatively. The antibacterial gels we carry around with us. The germaphobic behaviors we've developed and exhibited over the years are keeping the good bacterias away, as well as the not-so-good ones. We need to reduce these fears and live with our feet on the ground. We need to live on our earth, in the soil, get our hands dirty. Eat dirt, as it were. As it is. (So-to-speak.)

There's so much more information in this book and I know I'm not doing it justice. It's all in layman's terms, with a bit of professional information tossed in here and there for good measure. But you can read this book and get a better understanding of what leaky gut actually is, why it's impacting you or someone you know negatively, and how to heal it. Cure it - even. 

If this is something you've been curious about this book is the one for you. Dr. Axe also offers several recipes and resources for his readers that help support us on our journey to a healthier life. If you want to learn more about him or learn more from him just head on over to 

I received a copy of this book from TLC Book Tours to facilitate my review. I was not compensated for this review in any way. Links to Amazon are affiliate links. 


  1. I'm so glad you enjoyed the book! It's so important to have this information about our bodies so we can be proactive about it!

  2. I've been reading so many books about the microbiome and this one also sounds great. I never thought about all the ways we are affecting our microbiome, like anti-bacterial soaps and hand gels. Thanks for this review!

  3. This books sounds awesome. I'm sharing this post with my daughter too because she would love reading more about this topic too.

  4. GARDEN READY! My first year with a community garden plot at my kayak club in Canarsie, I grew flowers. Then I realized I like food better. :D

    I love growing my own. It's definitely not cheap (at least not here in NYC) and sometimes be frustrating (like this year I'm skipping cukes because for the last couple of years the vines came in strong and then some stupid mildewy thing took 'em down after way too short a time of picking) but it's so satisfying to actually grow food.

    Also makes me really appreciate that I'm lucky enough that I'm growing food because I want to.

  5. I've heard of leaky gut and had a general idea of what it is, but I need to grab this book and really delve into the whole issue.


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