Here are some facts- Women live longer than men. Women have stronger immune systems. They are less likely to suffer from learning and developmental disabilities, and are better at fighting cancer and surviving famine. Women are simply stronger than men at every stage of life, though we are taught the opposite. But why?
This question haunted Dr. Sharon Moalem throughout his career - when he was treating premature babies in the neonatal intensive care unit; when he was recruiting the elderly for neurogenetic studies; when he was tending to HIV-positive orphans in Thailand. He couldn't understand why men were consistently less likely to thrive. And then it all clicked into place- two X chromosomes offer a survival advantage.
With clear, captivating prose that weaves together eye-opening research, case studies, and diverse examples -- from the behaviour of honeybees to the fate of the Donner party -- and experiences from his personal life and his own patients, The Better Half explains why genetic females triumph over males when it comes to resiliency, intellect, stamina, immunity and much more. It also calls for a reconsideration of our male-centric, one-size-fits-all view of medical studies and even how we prescribe medications - a view that still sees women through the lens of men.
Revolutionary and utterly convincing, The Better Half will make you see humanity and the survival of our species anew.
Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD, is an award-winning scientist, physician and bestselling author. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller Survival of the Sickest and Inheritance, an Amazon Best Science Book of the Year, among other books. His work brings together evolution, genetics, and medicine to revolutionize how we understand and treat disease, and his clinical research led to the discovery of two new rare genetic conditions, and to his discovery of a first-in-class antibiotic which targets 'superbug' infections. His books have been translated into more than 35 languages.
Moalem brings deep, yet highly-readable, scientific analysis to the perennial question of what makes men and women different. Ideally, this book will re-set that conversation in research labs, doctors' offices, classrooms, and dinner tables around the world." -- E. Kinney Zalesne, New York Times bestselling collaborator on 'Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow's Big Changes' Although Dr. Moalem had me at the subtitle, I tore through this fascinating, eye-opening book in one sitting. Provocative, crackling with wit and insight, THE BETTER HALF argues that science has shortchanged women in all levels of research and convincingly reveals that the true differences between men and women come down to longevity, intellect, resilience, and immunity to disease. Now it all makes sense why 95 percent of people who have reached the age of 110 are women. -- Jancee Dunn New York Times bestselling author of 'How Not to Hate Your Husband After Kids' The Better Half explores the genetic differences between males and females in a way that is both original and scientifically compelling. This book provides a great read, and lots to think about, for specialists and the public alike. -- Han G. Brunner, MD, PhD, Professor of Human Genetics at Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center, and Maastricht University Medical Center, the Netherlands. A compelling argument for the resilience seen in women. But the real genius is the poetic justice he metes out by highlighting the brilliant women who remain unsung heroes in these discoveries. -- William J. Sullivan Showalter Professor at Indiana University School of Medicine and author of 'Pleased to Meet Me' This book provides the crucial scientific reasoning behind why it is essential to include males and females, both in people and animals, in order to get accurate results in medical research. Temple Grandin, New York Times bestselling author of 'The Autistic Brain' and 'Thinking in Pictures' Let's hear it for the X-chromosome! After decades, if not centuries, of bad press for women and their vulnerable biology, The Better Half gives chapter and verse to show that 'almost everything that is biologically difficult to do in life is done better by females'. An eye- and mind-opening celebration of the reserve genetic horsepower that having two X-chromosomes can bestow, The Better Half is a powerful antidote to the myth of a 'weaker sex'. Gina Rippon, author of The Gendered Brain and Professor Emeritus of Cognitive Neuroimaging at Aston University, Birmingham
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