The Health Benefits of Reading

by | Sep 1, 2023

Books? Reading? Who has the time? 

Yes, books! For me books have been one of the support systems in my caregiving journey. So, let’s start with 5 benefits of reading…

  1. Reduces stress and helps you relax. When you feel stressed just grab a book and be engrossed in the story lines and allow your mind and body to relax.
  2. Improves your concentration and memory. Reading is the best mental exercise for us, as you have to remember different characters, settings, plots, twists, and connections. This will strengthen your memory and concentration because all of your attention is focused on the story.
  3. Expands vocabulary and strengthens your writing abilities. Reading a well-written book will expose you to more words, and this will help you be a better communicator. Rather than just saying that you are sad or not in the mood to people, you can say you’re anxious, tired, irritated, frustrated, or weary. Because even though all those words can be described as sad, each needs a different solution.
  4. Enhances your knowledge. When you read recipes, magazines, newspapers, articles, or books, your head will be filled with information. We never know when it will be useful, but having all this information might come in handy in the future.
  5. Increases your imagination and creativity. Reading sparks imagination and creativity, being immersed in a new world and characters. This will nurture your brain to develop ideas, possibilities, understanding, and be more open to hearing the opinions of others.

I am grateful for books and authors who over the years have given me wisdom, direction, and knowledge, as well as simple enjoyment. Being able to hold a book still provides me with a special sense of connection much more than any digital device.

One of the books that really started my journey towards self care and wellness was Simple Abundance, by Sarah Ban Breathnach. It is a year’s journey of introspection and creativity in discovering who you really are. Then during a big transition point in my life’s journey there were two books that had a significant impact on how I viewed death and grief. The first is The Grief Recovery Handbook, by John W. James. The second, The Year of Magical Thinking, by Joan Didion. It’s healthy and necessary to examine our feelings around these life changing events.

Our journey toward greater awareness should never end and here are two more books that have really struck a chord with me. The first one, Thrive, by Arianna Huffington, reminded me of many concepts I have learned before, but have become more relevant to my current path – like the critical importance of sleep. The second is The 5 Second Rule, by Mel Robbins, where a small but powerful exercise can activate your brain to benefit your wellbeing. Both of these helped me set my path forward. Finally, one that really helped spark my passion and purpose is Ikigia, by Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles. This is where Alaka’i Associates found its place and mission.

And, if you are looking for a good book to read, I can recommend Under a Full Moon and a Guiding Star. (available on Amazon in Kindle, paperback, and hardcover)

Here’s what readers are saying:

“Loved this book! This book is for anyone in a caregiver role – as a mother, a daughter, a teacher, anyone. Everyone will benefit from the lessons on how to care for yourself while caring for others. This book is full of advice, practical information and activities from the Auntie we all wish we had in real life. Auntie Lani shares a lifetime of wisdom to help those who want a head start on living a balanced fulfilling life.”  ~ The Adventure Family

“Such an accomplishment! I skimmed it once and cried! Then I read it through properly and felt the love, heartache, growth, wisdom, aloha, karma, connectedness. I am going to read it again to focus on the takeaways and lessons.”  ~ Kelly L.

I hope this might inspire you to add reading a good book (or two) to your activities and share with me what’s on your reading list.


Biohacking: To Help You Live a Longer and Healthier Life

Most of us spend our entire lives trying to achieve happiness and the perfect life balance to leave us fulfilled. What is the key to biohacking your body to live longer? Learn some quick tips on how you can start to biohack your life to live a longer and healthier life. 

Contact us for a free 30 minute consultation if you are ready to start a new path to wellness. 





Meet the Author/Book Signing/Discovery Journal workshop – September 24, 2023, 1-4pm, at the Downtown Art Center in Honolulu. Light refreshments will be served.




Forest Bathing with a Full Moon – September 28, 2023. 9am-12pm, Lyon Arboretum, $100 per person. A celebration of the launch of “Under a Full Moon and a Guiding Star” with reflections shared by author, Lani Almanza during a forest bathing experience with Phyllis Look of Forest Bathing Hawai’i. *includes entry fee, refreshments, and a free copy of the book. NOTE: Limit of 15 participants and there must be a minimum of 6 registered/confirmed participants by September 25 or the event will be cancelled. 

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Until next time…..LiveAlohaLiveWell