Book Reviews

Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas is a thorough, thoughtful, and realistic approach to living with or preventing heart disease. Although it targets women of Black heritage and Latinas, Heart Smart’s 5 week program for living a heart-healthy lifestyle is relevant to all women (and men). Its informative, “how-to” style is presented in a positive and uplifting manner, fortified by stories of women with heart disease, and with practical suggestions and resources. Jennifer Mieres, M.D. and Terri Ann Parnell, R.N. have passionately crafted an extremely useful book about the heart that is clearly from their heart. A must read for Black and Latina (but really all) women with or at risk for heart disease.

Alice K. Jacobs, M.D. FAHA, FACC
Professor of Medicine
Director, Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory and Interventional Cardiology
Boston University School of Medicine
Boston MA.

A terrific, potentially life-saving book that’s a must read for all black and Latina women.

Jane Chesnutt
Woman’s Day

This book is a must have guide for any Black woman or Latina who wants some smart common sense advice on how to live a healthier and longer life. It is written by two women – a cardiologist and a nurse - who are world renowned for their expertise in preventing heart disease and have a wealth of experience in this subject. The best part is that it takes so much information and makes it easy to understand and to use. It covers all facets of diet and lifestyle, as well as advice on how to partner with your doctor and many other great tips. Any one of their suggestions could change your life – for the better. It’s a most worthy investment that will pay back the reader in a healthier and longer life.

Rita F. Redberg, MD, MSc., FACC
Professor of Medicine, Director
Women's Cardiovascular Services
UCSF School of Medicine
San Francisco, California
Author of the book: Coronary Disease in Women. Human Press 2004.

Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas is a wonderful book, written by leading authorities in women and heart disease. Jennifer Mieres, M.D. and Terri Parnell, R.N. have combined their extensive clinical wisdom and years of medical experience working with high risk black and Latina women to formulate a simple three-step action plan for the prevention and treatment of heart disease. This book offers myriad practical solutions for the prevention of lifestyle-related health problems that specifically affect minority women. Filled with sound nutrition, fitness and stress management advice (the cornerstone of all heart-healthy lifestyle plans), Heart Smart should be on every black and Latina woman's nightstand!

Janet Bond Brill, Ph.D., R.D., LDN
Nutrition, health and fitness consultant, author and speaker
Author of Cholesterol Down
(Crown, December 2006)

Heart Smart gives you a simple, logical and achievable 3 step plan that can lead you to huge heart health gains in 5 weeks...taking those critical steps will change your life and those that you love. Let's start today!

Kathy Kastan, LCSW/MAEd
Author, From the Heart: A Woman's Guide to Living Well with Heart Disease

This book is an important wake-up call for black women and Latinas to understand that small steps can make a difference in preventing heart disease. Read this book for yourself and your sisters, but also for your families' good health.

Nancy Loving
Heart Disease Survivor and C0-Founder

There's no time like the present to begin your journey toward living a heart-healthy lifestyle. Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas introduces 3 simple steps that will guide you and your family as you jump start your journey to living a heart-healthy lifestyle. You will soon see , as I did that small steps can make a big difference!

Vernita Morgan, BA,
Doctoral Student Educational Measurement and Statistics
The University of Iowa
Participant of the Choose To Move Program of the American Heart Association

Rarely does a book come along that not only offers information on what to do, but how to do things that can actually save a life …..and you don't have to sit in a class to get it right. Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas is such a book for minority women. Instead of offering advice that suggests a total change of lifestyle and cultural preferences, this book shows women how to stay true to themselves but in a smart way. This is really doable: short periods of exercise and simple diet adjustments. I've known Dr. Jennifer Mieres for years. She and I have often had "sistah" talks about health issues while sitting side-by-side under the driers at our favorite hair salon. Her advice to me when my own sister had a heart attack, and thankfully survived, was not just meaningful and encouraging but, affirming and helped me to understand that heart disease is curable. Now, here's a chance for everyone who cares about Black Women and Latinas to have that "sistah" talk with Dr. Jennifer. This book is a much-needed guide to heart health for minority women in America today.

Rehema Ellis
NBC News correspondent

Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas will guide you to a heart healthy lifestyle by providing simple suggestions for making changes that you can actually incorporate into your busy schedule. Heart Smart will help you learn how to eat well, get moving and reduce stress. A healthy lifestyle does not have to be an all or none approach - take your first step in placing yourself as a priority and get a copy of Heart Smart today! Take control of your will be glad you did.

Susan Somerville, RN, M.A
Executive Director
North Shore University Hospital
Manhasset, New York


Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas" is THE BOOK that every Black and Latina woman needs to read today. This well-written book will serve as a guide for women who want to prevent heart disease, deal with heart disease if you have it, and how to be proactive about your health. Who better to guide one on this path to a heart-healthy life than a black, female cardiologist who is passionate about this issue and has a vested interest in bettering the health of Black and Latina women? This is a book with a simple, straight-forward message that can help you change your life for the better in a few short weeks. Start reading this today to begin the road to a healthier and stronger heart!

Martha Gulati, MD, MS, FACC
The Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute of Northwestern Memorial Hospital's Center for Women's Cardiovascular Health
Chicago, Illinois
Author of "Heart Power Recipes: Healthy and Delicious Whole Food Ideas for the Home Cook"

Heart Smart provides a practical 5-week program to get you on your way to living a heart healthy life – moving more, eating better, stressing less and enjoying life! Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas answers all the questions that have gone unanswered for the “forgotten women”. Many books on heart disease are available to women but only Heart Smart is written for women of color. So get a family member, or a friend and begin today on a road to heart healthy living.

Stacey E Rosen, MD. FACC
Chief of Cardiology
Long Island Jewish Medical Center
North-Shore LIJ Health System

This book has the potential to change lives and communities. By breaking down the barriers to a healthy heart into small steps, Dr. Mieres and Ms. Parnell make it possible for any woman to live longer and stronger. It should be bedside reading for any woman of color.

Andrea King Collier
Author: The Black Woman's Guide to Black Men's Health

Heart Smart for Black Women and Latinas will jump-start you on your journey to a healthier lifestlye! I watched my mother prepare food for years. Dinners and weekend breakfasts started with the crackling of lard on a hot pan. I savored refried beans with cheese on flour tortillas, salty fries, crispy chuletas, and huevos con chorizo for years. I’m in my late 20s and I’m starting to plan for a family and becoming a healthier me. When all your family and friends eat unhealthy, it’s very easy to ignore or even forget the facts. My family is like many Hispanic families that live in two cultures. We succumb to the convenience of American fast food and grow up eating menudo, and burgers, churros, and fries. Living healthy is more than just a diet; it’s about taking away calories, burning the extra ones I choose to eat, and adding years to my life because I care for those that love me. Heart Smart will help you to do just that - don’t wait another moment, get your copy of Heart Smart today and make yourself a priority.

Zulema Esparza
Schoolteacher and participant in the American Heart Association’s Choose to Move Program

Mieres and Parnell have contributed an important resource for Black and Latina women, who are at high risk for cardiovascular problems. This easily read, culturally appropriate, and enormously informative manual encourages women, via a 5-week program, to adopt a heart-healthy lifestyle. The book presents women with a vast array of diet and exercise tips that can simplify and encourage adherence to a heart-healthy regimen. Steps to control stress are particularly valuable. As in the American Heart Association’s Prevention Guidelines for Women, this book highlights a partnership of women with their healthcare providers. Valuable questions and answers are offered, as are resource sites for information and healthcare resources. What a wonderful gift for a Black or Latina woman.

Nanette K. Wenger, MD
Professor of Medicine (Cardiology)
Emory University School of Medicine
Chief of Cardiology
Grady Memorial Hospital
Consultant, Emory Heart & Vascular Center