1962 Rachel Carson, one of the first to publicize the deleterious
effects of "manmade" chemicals on all forms of life on
this planet, wrote the groundbreaking A Silent Spring. Two years
later she had herself died of breast cancer; and it was 40 years
before anyone else would come along with both the capacity and the
courage to accept the challenge of continuing in Carson's
someone is the New York Times bestselling author Doris J. Rapp,
MD, an eminently qualified board-certified pediatrician, allergist,
and environmental medicine practitioner (reverentially referred
to by her colleagues as the "mother of environmental medicine"),
an extraordinarily gifted and compassionate doctor who has dedicated
her professional life to exploring the impact of a toxic environment
on our physical and mental well-being and to educating her patients
and the public at large to the numerous resources available to them
for preserving (or, if lost, to recovering) their optimal health.
Our Toxic World: A Wake-Up Call is much more than just a sequel
to Carson's sobering
and provocative expose. Although similarly eye-opening and disturbing
(as it documents -- in one chilling study after the next -- the
broad range of adverse health effects of synthetic environmental
chemicals on our brains, our bodies, and our sexual organs), this
meticulously researched and painstakingly referenced manual does
rather more than wake the reader up with a start. It also offers
the reader a sense of hope and possibility, that there are indeed
options available to those committed to learning about all the things
they can do to protect their own health and that of their loved
although Our Toxic World is gut wrenching
and heartbreaking, it is also a gripping page-turner from start
to finish; and the valuable pearls of wisdom contained herein will
be savored by the reader long after the last page has been turned
and the book returned to its shelf. Replete with 60 pages of invaluable
appendices enumerating various diagnostic tools, treatment protocols,
healthcare resources, and hot tips ("if a food to which you
are allergic makes you sleepy, take it before bedtime") gleaned
from Rapp's decades of clinical experience with the sick and the
relatively well, this volume -- a veritable tour de force -- is
an indispensable reference guide that belongs in the library of
all health-conscious laypersons and all healthcare professionals
(both those who are traditional and those who are more unorthodox).
cautions us all that if we refuse to take seriously this call to
action, then our planet will be in for not only a silent spring
but a silent summer, a silent fall, and a silent winter as well.
Congratulations to Dr. Rapp for having had the guts, the brains,
the dedication, and the passion to take up the gauntlet where Rachel
Carson left off and to pull together this masterpiece for posterity.
It is cutting-edge, state-of-the-art, and medicine at its best.
This volume will become a classic in the field
is however possible that someday Our Toxic World will become obsolete.
I certainly hope so. But until that time...
Martha Stark, M.D., Faculty, Harvard