Monday, March 17, 2008

Unlocking the Mystery of Skin Color (A Strictly Natural Way to Dramatically Lighten Skin Color Through Diet and Lifestyle)

ISBN: 9780979210303 - Thiênna, Inc. (2007)
Reviewed by Olivera Baumgartner-Jackson for Reader Views (2/08)

The first time I truly and really became aware of importance and influence of skin color was when I moved to USA 8 years ago. Growing up in Europe skin color just wasn't an issue, or at least not one that would merit more than a second's pause when one met somebody of a different race. I have to admit I never gave it much thought, and even after reading Thiênna Ho's book, I found myself quite surprised that my home country ranks among those with the absolute lightest people on the planet. Skin color was not and still is not anything that defines a person in my eyes, but unfortunately I had to learn that in certain parts of the world it truly matters enormously. Whether we like to admit it or not, life in the USA is easier if you happen to be lighter skinned. I am not going to moralize nor preach about this issue; suffice to say that I do understand why a person would want to lighten her or his skin if they could do it safely.
Thiênna Ho's "Unlocking the Mystery of Skin Color" carries a long subtitle, namely "The Strictly Natural Way to Dramatically Lighten Your Skin Color Through Diet and Lifestyle." While the cover photos failed to convince me that the color change in Thiênna Ho's own case was quite this dramatic, I see absolutely nothing wrong with the diet and lifestyle changes that she recommends. All of us would benefit from eating smarter, moving more, eliminating toxins and stress from our life, taking nice long baths and indulging in massages – which are some of her tips.
It is obvious that Thiênna Ho performed an outstanding amount of research while developing her method and writing her book. Just a glance through the over 40 pages of endnotes shows the great number and diversity of sources used in writing "Unlocking the Mystery of Skin Color." The book is actually quite interesting reading for the general public as well, dealing with diverse topics such as the great variety of the human skin colors, melanin, influence of sulfur on the skin color, the role of the environment as well as several chapters on nutrition and lifestyle. The surprisingly easy to read and understand style contributes to the feeling that this book should not be intimidating to anybody – it is written in such a way that a general reader can get enough useful information; and the more advanced or a professional one will find another nearly 100 pages of data, tables and sources in the appendices.
Regardless of whether you pick up "Unlocking the Mystery of Skin Color" because you truly want to lighten your complexion or out of sheer curiosity, I am certain that you will learn a lot of both useful tips and fascinating trivia about an attribute that we all posses and which oftentimes defines us - even when it should not.

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