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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best-selling author and king of "immersion journalism" A.J. Jacobs tackles his most challenging experiment yet: a yearlong mission to radically improve every element of his body and mind - from his brain to his fingertips to his abs.

Having lifted his spirit in The Year of Living Biblically and sharpened his mind in The Know-It-All, A. J. Jacobs had one feat left in the self-improvement trinity: to become the healthiest man in the world. He doesn't just want to lose a couple of pounds, or finish a triathlon, or lower his cholesterol.

First, he had to tackle a complicated web of diet and exercise advice, most which is nonsensical, unproven, and contradictory. Second, he had to consult a team of medical advisers. And finally, he had to subject himself, over the course of two years, to a grueling regimen of exercises, a range of diets and nutritional plans, and a brutal array of techniques and practices to improve everything from his hearing to his sleep - all the while testing the patience of his wife.

This latest work bursts with hilarity and warmth, all the while testing our culture's assumptions and obsessions with what makes good health and allowing the listener to reflect on his or her own health, body, and eventual mortality.

©2012 A. J. Jacobs (P)2012 Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“We can become healthier by learning from AJ's discomfort in this very funny book. He moves us from theory to practice by dragging his body through all the longevity practices. (Dr. Mehmet Oz)
"Can one man go from a 'python that ate agoat' physique to perfect specimen? From Roman soldier workouts to Areca palm plants, fromthe sublime to the absurd, AJ has tried it all. I laughed my ass off the wholeway and learned a ton ... including about my ass." (Timothy Ferriss, author of The 4-Hour Workweek)
"Who wouldn't want to be fitter, happier, more productive? In this riotous, madcap book, AJ Jacobs sets himself an ambitious goal: to become the person we all wish we could be. It's vintage AJ. Do your future self a favor and read this book." (Joshua Foer, author of Moonwalking with Einstein)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Delightfully Entertaining

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, Jacobs is a very entertaining writer and his reading is just terrific. The information is good, because he is able to access people who are experts in the field that he is talking about.

Which scene was your favorite?

There were many wonderful chapters, but the chapter on germs was one of my favorites.

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  • Jenny
  • Auckland, New Zealand
  • 09-17-12

Love this book - laughed and learnt.

Would you listen to Drop Dead Healthy again? Why?

I loved the relaxed conversational style of the author and narrator. There is something special when an author reads his/her own work. AJ Jacobs has a natural delivery and easy going style. I learnt so much - however I will definitely listen again for the gems I missed.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Drop Dead Healthy?

AJ's account of the conversations with his grandfather, and also the triathlon event.

Which scene was your favorite?

I loved the account of the 'cave man' work out in Central Park, and the odd characters mentioned throughout the book.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Dont knock it till you've tried it? Check!

Any additional comments?

Looking forward to the authors next work.

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  • Lurene
  • Chemainus, BC, Canada
  • 09-04-12

A Giggling, Investigative Journey to Better Health

Would you consider the audio edition of Drop Dead Healthy to be better than the print version?

I haven't read the print version, so it would be unfair to compare. However, I love a book read by an author when they convey their tone, voice and meaning so well. A. J. Jacobs does all that.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Drop Dead Healthy?

"I want it, I want it, I really, really want it!" I still laugh when recalling this section.

What about A. J. Jacobs’s performance did you like?

He has a self effacing, wry sense of humor while still conveying his interest in the world and willingness to give new things a try.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I love that the author.'s wife and kids, and friends and family, are willing to "play along" when he thrusts new experiences upon them. Funny as it is, it also shows how much they care about him and the things he tries or embraces. And in doing so, he broadens their horizons, too. Not always for the best, but definitely broader!

Any additional comments?

More, please, A.J.!

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  • Teri
  • Bremerton, WA, United States
  • 08-11-12

It was ok

What did you like best about Drop Dead Healthy? What did you like least?

I liked it ok BUT I still thing his other book year of living biblical was more fresh funny

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  • Story

interesting story but narration weak

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Professional narrator

Would you ever listen to anything by A. J. Jacobs again?

Possibly as content was interesting, informative and humorous

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of A. J. Jacobs?

Not sure

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Interest in taking charge of your health

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  • hlew
  • Palos Park, IL, United States
  • 07-13-12

Fun

I like all of his books and this was the first one I listened to. I enjoyed it very much and the content was very good. Basic but still with good information. I am now considering listening to other books of Jacobs.

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Funny but not a Manual

Would you try another book from A. J. Jacobs and/or A. J. Jacobs?

I don't think so. He was a good writer and all, but hearing him jaunt about spending money and time doing this outrageous stuff started to get my jealousy going.

What does A. J. Jacobs bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

His voice, his personality, his true perspective as he wrote it. :-)

Could you see Drop Dead Healthy being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

no no. It's not made for that.

Any additional comments?

This was a good read. Sometimes unrelateable and at times definately unbelievable. There were some topics I thoguht he could have developed more and others could have been left out or the detail pared down. It's good for a laugh, but not as a reference guide.

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  • Cindy
  • Olympia, Wa
  • 07-05-12

Fun listen and learned a few things too

I enjoy books by A.J. Jacobs, and have listened to all of them and enjoyed them all. This one did not disappoint and is one of my favorites of his books. I am glad that he narrated it himself, which makes it even better.

Most of us need to get healthier, and this book was a fun way to learn healthier habits. It helps by wading through the current health info out there and make sense of it. And A. J. doesn't just tell us, he tries it for us!

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Informative and entertaining, no more.

What made the experience of listening to Drop Dead Healthy the most enjoyable?

I could relate to Mr Jacobs pursuit of healthiness. I am confused on what to pursue and feel that I am damn if I do, damned if I don't. He helped a little with clearing up some of this confusion.

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

A.J. Jacob voice is a little whiney. Part of his charm I guess, but it grated on me a bit.

Any additional comments?

This book is entertaining an informative. It is easy to listen to and relate to. It isn't a guide to fitness and health, just a log of a journey. It might change your life, but then again it might just entertain you. Good book, enjoyable and informative. Worth a listen to.

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#1 seller for a reason!

Great story and a great listen. I knew I wanted to read this book but since I get motion sick on the bus, I was happy to enjoy the audio version on my commute. Jacobs has a great voice and reads with enthusiasm. I enjoy his little side stories about his wife, children, grandfather, crazy aunt and trips to the doctor. I was surprised this book didn't have a profound turning point where he really started shedding pounds drastically but I think his overall message is important: We're overwhelmed with health propaganda and we needed someone like him to investigate what works and what doesn't. Great, great book and I'd definitely recommend it!