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Brave New Medicine: A Doctor's Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness
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Brave New Medicine: A Doctor's Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness

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4.49  ·  Rating details ·  91 ratings  ·  24 reviews

In this revelatory memoir, Doctor Cynthia Li shares the truth about her disabling autoimmune illness, the limitations of Western medicine, and her hard-won lessons on healing—mind, body, and spirit.

Li had it all: a successful career in medicine, a loving marriage, children on the horizon. But it all came crashingdown when, afterdeveloping an autoimmune thyroid condition,

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Kindle Edition, 272 pages
Published September 1st 2019 by Reveal Press (first published 2019)
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Average rating 4.49  · 
Rating details
 ·  91 ratings  ·  24 reviews


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Start your review of Brave New Medicine: A Doctor's Unconventional Path to Healing Her Autoimmune Illness
Literary Soirée
I was so moved by the long journey to wholeness of the author, an internal medicine physician whose Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and chronic fatigue took her from a thriving medical practice to housebound with two young children.

HEROINE’S EPIC
Her courageous and unconventional trek to healing is a heroine’s epic that inspires and calls into question the efficacy of conventional medicine alone.

RECOVERY
Her answers illuminate all manner of recovery: looking at root causes, using the body and spirit’s
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Daniel H
Aug 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't put this book down! And I don't even have an autoimmune illness. Reads like a good mystery.
Julie
Sep 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Highly recommended. After feeling disillusioned by overly proscriptive (and diet culture-proliferating) functional medicine reads, I feel reinvigorated by Dr. Li's heart-filled story and suggestions. She reminded me that healing can be gentle, accumulative, and community-building.
Corey Wignall-Holowaty
Aug 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaway
As someone who suffers from a chronic illness that seems to have no reasoning as to why it found me or how to control the symptoms, I found this book very interesting, especially seeing how it came from the perspective of a medical professional. I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone with silent illnesses or someone interested in memoirs or the medical field. This book was inspirational and beautifully written.
Micky Cox
Aug 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting autobiographical look at Hashimotos autoimmune and thyroid disease coming from a dr who suffered as a patient and had a hard time getting "old" ways of treating those issues out of her way to see the newer research and approaches to overall health. As someone who does suffer from the same diseases and issues, it is interesting to see a dr's perspective as they try to get relief and not just be passed off as a "problem patient" as so many of us are. I think the overall message of ...more
Galiciasharon
Sep 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As I put Brave New Medicine down, I feel both exhilarated and exhausted. Exhilarated because there is hope that I can be whole again, and exhausted because I felt Cynthia’s pain. I walked her journey with her, because her journey was my journey - she is just further along, guiding the way to health. Cynthia’s book is both gut wrenching and cleansing. To anyone who has ever walked the road of long term health problems, this book is a must read! Dr. Li combines traditional medicine with ancient ...more
Ri
Aug 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As someone who was diagnosed with Lupus and Hashimoto's in the past five years, this book touched me. I found myself relating to this author's journey, as I too have struggled to find answers and found myself questioning so many different things. I felt everything that she felt and then some.

She made me think and gave me insight into how best to find the answers I need and how I might approach my own healing. I wasn't expecting to come away enjoying this book as much as I did. I would highly
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Micky Cox
Aug 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
An interesting autobiographical look at Hashimotos autoimmune and thyroid disease coming from a dr who suffered as a patient and had a hard time getting "old" ways of treating those issues out of her way to see the newer research and approaches to overall health. As someone who does suffer from the same diseases and issues, it is interesting to see a dr's perspective as they try to get relief and not just be passed off as a "problem patient" as so many of us are. I think the overall message of ...more
Susanne
Aug 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, netgalley
Thank you to New Harbinger Publications and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Back in a previous lifetime, I trained as a registered nurse, so was intrigued by the description - and this book did not disappoint. The author shares the journey of her "most difficult patient", herself, from being a diligent medical student, to becoming a stressed and active young doctor, to being housebound and with no energy to do anything more than lie in bed. All this with two young children
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Cozy Cat Reviews
I appreciate the ARC from Net Galley and the publisher. As one who has autoimmune disease and has been dismissed and misdiagnosed by Kaiser doctors over and over again as well as disrespected as a patient and called "difficult" by multiple doctors (when I refuse to take harmful pills) I was interested to read this doctor's own journey through western medicine with her Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

I appreciate the utter honesty and candid journey she documents here . Anyone suffering from chronic
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Ste
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an amazing and magical read. I absolutely loved it and did not want it to end.

This is the gripping story of a woman that discovers her true power through darkness, and learns to master it to heal herself and others.

The book takes you deep into the Cynthia’s life, as changes sweep her into a new world - one of hardship and turmoil. Through tumultuous decades, Cynthia must find her inner strength, connect with the wisdom of her body, and surrender to her destiny as an unconventional healer,
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Dilia Narduzzi
Nov 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Very useful and compelling book. Have gone back many times already to reread bits. I appreciate this author's story and her thoughts on the body and medical system. I'm so very depressed about the state of modern medicine when it comes to dealing with chronic illness, and this book made me feel less bad about the whole thing. I read this a while back and forgot to put it in Goodreads.
Peggy
Sep 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For all those who suffer with undiagnosed illness, this is the book for you. The long journey the author, a medical doctor, endures is quite shocking. It took her years to accept alternative medicine as the healing she so desperately needed. Beautifully written with a depth of information for all readers, I highly recommend this book.
Jozef Syndicate
Jul 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brave, yes. New, yes. Medicine....and answers!

Cynthia Li's path to healing--as she shares it in "Brave New Medicine"--is 5s and a wow!

Study this book, take one or all of Li's solutions and bravely heal autoimmune dis-eases. Then, grab one for your doctors, specialists, nurses, and chronically ill loved ones. Priceless. #NetGalley #JozefBookandBrew
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Heather Bennett
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Brave New Medicine is a interesting memoir that is well written. Her long journey and struggle is a brave one and informative.
Juan Carlos Carlos
Sep 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Having gone through health issues myself I could not only relate to Cynthia's powerful journey of healing and self-empowerment, but I also felt inspired to ask new questions.

We have a sense that we become stronger not in spite of our challenges, but by having gone through them. However, it is not always clear how we are supposed to face those challenges. Cynthia brings new insights, wisdom and clarity to that process, and invites us to see the healing path with a new perspective. She provides a
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Lydia
Jul 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Dr. Li's story of methodical healing sets an incredible example for how we should all approach our unknowns -with scientific skepticism but an abundance of openness and adventure. The dedication and introspection she demonstrated could be a model for healing and self improvement in more ways than her particular condition- the fundamentals are listening to yourself, admitting what works and what doesn't, developing intuition for patterns and feelings, and having resolve. This book is a great ...more
Philip Eulie
Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Søren Kierkegaard spoke of character as engraved, deeply etched. In medicine character matters. There must be trust between the physician and patient: trust that the physician is a skilled navigator of the waters ahead; and, trust that the physician will operate in the patient’s best interest. I practiced next to Dr. Cynthia Li for several years. She was a consummate internist skillfully navigating patients through the treacherous waters of the human condition based on the most current and ...more
Nicolas
Oct 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
So I'm biased because the author is my cousin's wife and I love and admire the whole family. Having heard about her health challenges, I was thrilled to read the book and learn about how she progressed from a western-science-based internal medicine doctor to a full-fledged healer. So much of her advice is critical for all of us who deal with health issues, the first of which is surviving in a modern world. I especially appreciate reading about her work with alternative therapies from the point ...more
Beth
I LOVED this book. So many times while reading it, I would find myself nodding in agreement, or tearing up, and full of relief that someone - an MD, even! - GETS IT: the exhaustion, confusion, anger, unpredictability, helplessness, and the feeling of being constantly overwhelmed that comes with living with an unexplainable, chronic condition. And she not only gets it, but can explain it in such an eloquent, honest way. Plus, the way she explained her experience from an allopathic medical ...more
Elaine
Oct 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is such an interesting and well written book. The author is a doctor who faced a very debilitating illness of chronic fatigue syndrome. She recounts the ten years she spent slowly exploring the causes and potential cures for her illness, which took her well beyond conventional Western medicine and into alternative paths such as acupuncture, herbs, qiqong, meditation, and intuition - the basis for foundational or naturopathic medicine. This is a fascinating read. I found it very helpful and ...more
Melanie Sears
Oct 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed reading this book about a Dr. who figured out how to recover or live with her autoimmune disorder (I don't know that she totally recovered but she was able to get back to living fully and working part-time.) The story was interesting and she had a lot of good ideas about how to become healthy. She eventually changed from practicing traditional Western Medicine to more of a Functional Medicine modality. I like that she changed her mindset and leaned to embrace things like intuition and ...more
Deborah Burke
Oct 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Poor health stops me in my tracks. When I’m sick, I slow down, I feel sad, I spiral in negative thoughts. The crushing feeling of sickness is always knotted up with guilt for not following through on whatever my calendar contained. And that’s just when I have the flu!

Reading this thoughtful memoir by Cynthia Li, about her much more complex sickness and complicated wellness journey, I felt deep empathy for her struggle and her story. Dr. Li does an excellent job investigating herself through
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Suzanne Elizabeth
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Good read about the personal journey of a physician learning to navigate through her own autoimmune health crisis. I would highly recommend for anyone suffering with chronic disease or otherwise unexplained constellation of symptoms.
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Cynthia Li, MD, graduated from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, and has practiced in settings as diverse as Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, San Francisco General Hospital, and St Anthony Medical Clinic for the homeless. She serves on the faculty of the Healer's Art program at the University of California San Francisco School of Medicine, and has a private practice in ...more
“Food isn’t just generic energy—it’s molecular information. In addition to fueling the mitochondrial powerhouses, food tells our cells what to do and serves as building blocks for hormones, brain chemicals, and cell membranes.” 0 likes
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