The Eight-week Cholesterol Cure

(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

Any adult whose cholesterol level exceeds two hundred milligrams per deciliter, as determined by a blood test, is risking heart problems caused by clogged coronary arteries. Robert E. Kowalski, who had a cholesterol reading of 284, failed to lower his cholesterol significantly by following the diet approved by the American Heart Association. He disliked the deprivation he thought the Pritikin program would impose and wished to avoid the expense and the side effects of drugs to lower his cholesterol count. His research into how to counteract his problem led him to a solution which, in eight weeks, dropped his own cholesterol level to a very acceptable 169.

Kowalski’s three-part program involves diet to limit the cholesterol taken into the body, oat bran to flush out the cholesterol already there, and niacin to cut back on the cholesterol produced by the liver. (Some people cannot tolerate niacin, so Kowalski’s recommendations should be read in full, including his warnings of contraindication.)

The diet suggestions are sensible and involve awareness of the cholesterol, fat, and sodium contents of foods. The addition of oat bran to the diet has had a proven effect on the lowering of cholesterol in the body. It also aids in weight control because of the feeling of fullness caused by bran. The emphasis on good nutrition separates this book from some popular fad diets and presents a positive attitude toward foods that are healthy. The chapter “Let’s Go Shopping” gives a quick boost to the food planner, and the recipes in the last quarter of the book are a boon to the cook. Charts showing the fat and cholesterol contents of popular foods include brand-name convenience foods and selections from fast-food restaurants.