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Publisher's Summary

The field of mind-body medicine is plagued by wild claims that mislead patients and instil false hope. But as scientists in a range of fields uncover solid evidence that our minds influence our bodies quite profoundly, there is now great promise, too.

Jo Marchant attempts to use scientific research to find out if alternative medicines work; if our thoughts, beliefs and emotions influence our physical health; and if we can train our brains to heal our bodies.

©2016 Jo Marchant (P)2016 W F Howes Ltd

Critic Reviews

" Cure beautifully describes the cutting-edge research going on in the fascinating - and until now, often unexplored - area of mind-body medicine." (Henry Marsh, author of Do No Harm)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Lauren L
  • Johannesburg, South Africa
  • 05-10-18

Intriguing and ultimately empowering

Beyond merely interesting, Cure is nothing short of mind-blowing in some respects, and even where the research conducted to date raises more questions than it yields answers on the inter-dependence of mind and body, it is ultimately empowering. Highly recommended.

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Medical equivalent book to “Scientific Creationism

Would you try another book from Jo Marchant and/or Genevieve Swallow?

NEVER!

Has Cure turned you off from other books in this genre?

This is a trash book based upon content. The narrator is fine.

Any additional comments?

I listened to “Cure” by Jo Marchant after reading glowingly positive reviews in the NY Times, NPR, etc. As a PhD in chemistry with many years as a tenured professor at a top 20 university followed by many years in biotech, I found it to be a horribly non-scientific book that pretends to evaluate the placebo effect and the influence of the mind but really is an indictment of evidence-based medicine. Jo Marchant has written the equivalent to medicine of books on “Scientific Creationism” for evolutionary biology: pseudoscience at best, and believe and superstition masquerading as science at worst.

For example, the studies of placebos are done by one scientific group in the world and with limited number of patients. The studies of alternative medicine are generally uncontrolled and have too few participants. Most evidence is simply individual testimony. Indeed, like nearly all alternative medicine proponents, Jo Marchant consistently uses such testimony rather than randomized clinical trials because the evidence from RCT is overwhelmingly that alternative treatments have no benefit except the placebo effect.

As such, the book is nothing more than an ode to the influence of placebo which all physicians and pharmaceutical/biotech scientists would fully acknowledge is significant. But, Ms. Marchant then tries to indict reputable scientists and companies that are working on treating diseases in which the mind is of negligible effect: cancer, cardiovascular, etc.

As the head of the alternative medicine at NHS told Ms. Marchant, the only sensible and ethical scientific position is to give medicines with active ingredients as these also include any placebo effect since patients expect the medicines to work. Any other position is unethical, wastes the money of patients, and can prevent or delay needed medical treatment for diseases like cancer that are so critical for early diagnosis.

I have utter contempt for Ms. Marchant. My guess from years as a professor, is that she was one of the graduate students who do little more than run standard experiments, isolate a product and write up the results for some obscure journal. She certainly never learned the skepticism and analytical thought processes of a scientist, and should have her PhD rescinded!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Gemma
  • 03-12-17

Excellent content, terrible narration

The content of this book is very interesting with informative case studies that back up the ideas being described.

Unfortunately the narration is terrible. The narrator hypes up every new piece of information like it's a dramatic novel and puts on voices for different characters like she's reading a child's bedtime story. This style makes it very difficult to follow what is an interesting piece of scientific research. The narration drove me so much to distraction that I stopped listening for a few weeks. I restarted the book today and have only got to chapter 3 before I can't take it anymore.

DO NOT buy this audiobook, but definitely go out and purchase the real book instead!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Harold Hughes
  • 09-27-17

Good Book - Questionable Narration

The premise of this book is fascinating and very well researched and written. It is a thorough study of the mind/body connection with specific reference to the power of the placebo effect. It took me a while to listen to it because of the narration. Genevieve Swallow reads the text well and has a nice enough voice - until - and it is a big until - she reads dialogue. For some reason rather than just reading what any given character has to say, she reads it in an accent. For example, if she is quoting something a Doctor from Germany has said, she says it in a ridiculous German accent. There are characters from all over the world in this book from Manchester to Milan and she insists on reading what they have to say in terrible accents which becomes really off-putting at least for me as a listener. This is not a novel in need of dramatic interpretation, it is a technical book relaying information - I don't appreciate the accents. I almost returned the book as I have it in eBook format also, but I wanted to get through it while I walked to work rather than sit down and read it - that's the beauty of the audio book format. So, whether this is a production issue or just the narrators style - please, in future, just read the text.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Yavor Indzhev
  • 06-21-18

Great narration!

The book is good and full to of sense. The narator is the best one so far :)

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  • Private
  • 06-04-18

Book good but why the accents?

The book itself is fine. Good information. But the reader keeps trying to read the quoted po eople in their accents. Not only are the accents badly done, but it's distracting and totally unnecessary.

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  • jonnywildboar
  • 05-03-18

Worth it for the great content

Oh lord ........ the narrator has a lovely voice , I cant help but think the accents were not her idea ... well worth it however as the content is top notch.

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  • mr j p warren
  • 04-17-18

Please get it re-read!

I love this book and had read it before getting it on Audible. It's well-written and so interesting. BUT as other reviewers have said, this narration, especially the cringy accents let's it down and detracts from the content so that you are half-way into a bit of dialogue before you realise you haven't been able to listen to what that bit was about.

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  • PJ Clark
  • 03-28-18

Fascinating and valuable on many levels

This book articulated many concepts I felt had validity - but took my own limited understanding of this subject to a new place - risking hyperbole, like entering a palace of learning.
I am very impressed with the authors research, hypotheses and conclusions, combined with her open minded but disciplined thinking, her clarity and credibility offer great insights to even the least technically or medically qualified reader.
This book was, is and will continue to be an important personal reference for me, having recently recovered from a potentially catastrophic ME like affliction, flavoured with severe fibromyalgia.
I was often startled by what I learned, and just as importantly, my mind has been opened positively to other people’s attitudes, experiences and beliefs in a way and to a level I could not have imagined.

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  • Mervyn
  • 02-19-18

Mind Over Matter!

An awesome read! A well balanced case has been made for why and how our minds are intricately woven into our body system, and how the two can be used together, along with conventional medicine, to create Cure, prevention and well-being.

Jo’s willingness to ask some searching questions of conventional medical treatment and also hold up to scrutiny the mind-body argument is both refreshing and relieving! To see a scientist really go to work on how valid mind-body treatments are, yet not completely dismiss them has me Feeling there is hope for us! Her balanced and articulate views are well conveyed in this book...the narrator needs a medal, also! To get so many accents, spoken so sensitively and accurate helped me read (listen) with even more awareness...I got well and truly enrolled in the story!

Loved it!

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  • Tara
  • 10-06-17

amazing read

This book is amazing! !! life changing. .a must read for the open minded. enjoy this amazing book

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  • Gupster
  • 07-13-17

Great content but dodgy accents

Loved the content but the narrator attempted to do accents of the people being interviewed but they sucked at it and I found it annoying. However it didn't detract enough to let me get the learning.

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  • Anna Cooke
  • 09-17-17

out of date, misleading research - how much?!

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

I was enjoying this book, until I reached the section on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. The only research covered in this section was the infamous PACE trial, and there was no mention of the very legitimate concerns from scientists about the flaws in the study (including changing the criteria of 'recovery' between time points, so that people could actually deteriorate, but still be rated as having improved!). Also no mention of the repeated requests to release data that have been continuously avoided by the authors of that study, including, by inventing stories of harrassment! Instead it continuously refers to patient groups as the only opposition to the study, which is very unfair. If this book puts so much emphasis on such a dodgy study, why should I trust anything else in it? I'm very disappointed.

If you’ve listened to books by Jo Marchant before, how does this one compare?

na

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Narrator was quite dramatic, which isn't necessary when the content is interesting.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Cure?

Anything where the science hasn't been verified.

Any additional comments?

Such a promising premise and interesting topic, that I was really enjoying, but now feel that cannot trust the author to actually research all sides and include pertinent information. And if I can't trust the author, why would I read/listen?

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-25-17

Brilliant book

This is an engaging, fascinating book which is brilliantly written. The narrator did a fabulous job and I absolutely LOVE it.