Called “brilliant, liberating, and life-changing” by Paul Ehrlich, Healthy Pleasures offers the tools to make pleasure the centerpiece of a long and happy life.
``At nearly every turn, pleasure has gotten a bad name,'' write the authors, who tell us that in pursuit of longevity Americans have become overly abstemious. Psychologist Ornstein and Sobel, director of preventive medicine at the Kaiser-Permanente HMO, believe that eradicating all of life's pleasures--whether chocolate, alcohol or even an occasional puff of tobacco--represents a far more serious threat to our well-being than whatever damage may be wreaked by occasionally indulging. Deploring what they call ``medical terrorism,'' they point out that some once-dire findings on health hazards have been reversed, disputed or exaggerated. The authors' secret for happiness: forget asceticism in the name of health. We should touch each other more often, learn to take life a little more lightly, partake in some form of gentle physical exercise, nap when necessary and learn to be less self-centered generally. If this advice seems a touch obvious, it may bear repeating nonetheless. 75,000 printing; Literary Guild/Doubleday Book Club alternate; first serial to American Health Magazine; major ad/promo. (June)