Eat Fat, Be Healthy: Understanding the Heartstopper Gene and When a Low-Fat Diet Can Kill You

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Simon & Schuster, 2000 - Cooking - 220 pages
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Apparently in robust health at age forty-five, Matt Bayan exercised every day, ate a low-fat diet, never smoked, and successfully avoided excess stress. But in the early hours of May 6, 1996 he was jolted awake by a massive, unexpected heart attack. In a nearby emergency room, Bayan's heart had to be restarted more than six dozen times, as doctors fought to save his life.

It was only later, as he was recovering, that Bayan learned of new research revealing the existence of a gene that actually causes some people to produce more bad cholesterol on a low-fat diet than on a higher-fat one. Not only did Bayan carry, this killer gene, but so does an estimated 20 percent of the population. While the standard low-fat approach to preventing and treating heart disease works for most people, for carriers of the Heart-Stopper gene, it can be deadly -- as it nearly was for Matt Bayan.

Bayan explains how the killer gene works, how it can be detected through a simple blood test, and how the gene's effects can be countered by a combination of diet, exercise, and medication. With the gene still largely unknown in the medical community, even among cardiologists, this inspiring book -- an exhortation to all patients to become better informed and more involved in their own care -- could be a lifesaver.

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