1. Goodwin, Susan MS, RN, CNS, CPAN, Reviewer

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Every Heart Attack is Preventable: How to Take Control of the 20 Risk Factors and Save Your Life


By Michael Mogadam. New York: New American Library. $13.95. ISBN: 0-451-20776-9. 367 pages.


Previously published in 2001 in hardback, this book is now available as a paperback. An assistant professor of medicine at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, the author focuses on the prevention of heart attacks and cardiovascular disease. This approach is a departure from the norm of the traditional medical community and is both welcome and much needed.


The author incorporates current research from around the world, as well as from the United States to create a multifaceted prevention program. He has divided the risk factors into 2 lists: 20 major coronary risk factors and 20 minor risk factors. The major risk factors include well-known ones such as high blood pressure, smoking, and elevated cholesterol but also include low birth weight, abdominal obesity, chronic infections, and negative affect. The minor risk factors include many chronic diseases or socioeconomic conditions, as well as overworking and certain occupations (air traffic controller, fireman, police officer, minister/rabbi). All are discussed in detail and include methods to prevent or correct them.


A major portion of his book is devoted to "Debunking Dietary Myths," which then leads to the Twenty Risk Factor (TRF) diet. The TRF diet is detailed in 50 pages of tables listing the TRF scores of common foods and ingredients, as well as prepared foods.


The author evaluates many complementary and alternative therapies and embraces some and discarding others.


This book provides a concise compilation of current research and knowledge in cardiovascular disease, although its focus is primarily prevention of cardiovascular disease. For practitioners in family medicine or cardiology, this book is a valuable resource. For the practitioner who is seeking personal self-improvement, it is required reading.