- Paperback: 274 pages
- Publisher: Carolina Academic Press (March 15, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1594608857
- ISBN-13: 978-1594608858
- Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,130,290 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Walter Kempner and the Rice Diet: Challenging Conventional Wisdom
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
This month's Book With Buzz: "The Lying Game" by Ruth Ware
From the instant New York Times bestselling author of blockbuster thrillers "In a Dark, Dark Wood" and "The Woman in Cabin 10" comes Ruth Ware’s chilling new novel, "The Lying Game." See more
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
About the Author
Barbara Newborg (MD, Johns Hopkins University, 1949) is an Associate Professor of Medicine Emeritus at Duke University. She lives in Durham, North Carolina.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
Top customer reviews
The book is comprised of three definite separate sections, although there is overlap and repetition among them. I would have preferred a book that traveled in a more solid time line, but the author and editor must have felt differently.
I did find some disturbing information about Dr. K. from reading this book, and it made me glad that I never met Dr. Kempner personally. I have worked with a lot of physicians, and most of them are real ego maniacs, so I wasn't totally surprised by that aspect of Dr. K. Yes, he was a caring man in many ways, but he was also very egocentric and a real control freak when it came to his rice diet. But what I found disturning was the revelation that he whipped patients for going off the diet! The author is okay with that because she states that either the patients themselves suggested it or pre-consented to it!!! It also disturbs me that Dr. K. evidently only used this technique with women! As a man who never married, and any reference to any sort of romantic attraction is entirely missing in this biographical account, this is just very disturbing information. No wonder Dr. K. held such a tight control over his rice diet plan, and felt no one could duplicate the study! Not when patients faced those sorts of shaming techniques!
There are some worthwhile reasons for reading this book, though, despite what respect I may have had for Dr. K. pretty much vanishing after reading this book. These are some worthwhile, informative excerpts.
"Kempner found that, in his experimental animals, he could produce very low blood sugar through fasting, in the absence of insulin and without causing convulsions. Relevant to the future development of the rice diet, he also found he could raise blood sugar levels with injections of adrenaline. Because the adrenal gland responds to sodium, its activity is decreased by the removal of sodium. These observations on sodium later bore fruit when they helped lead Dr. Kempner to the idea that sodium might play a role in both diabetes and hypertension via the adrenal glands and, more important, that maximum restriction of sodium could contribute to the treatment of these and other symptoms." (p. 44)
"As Dr. Kempner had pointed out to the medical students, his research had strongly indicated that a radical reduction of sodium, protein, and fat could halt or at least slow the disease process in patients with damaged kidneys. He had not imagined that, also in hypertensive patients with no evidence of kidney disease, the rice diet could actually reduce blood pressure, reverse heart failure, heal retinopathy, and, most astonishingly, significantly shrink disease-enlarged hearts." (p. 129)
"Another attempt to explain away the benefits of the rice diet was to attribute them to simple starvation. Dr. Kempner pointed out the 'fundamental chemical differences between the effects of starvation and of the rice diet... hemoglobin, red blood cells, calcium, and total protein, A/G ratio, sugar, carbohydrate tolerance, and CO2-combining power in the blood are decreased in starvation. On the rice diet, they are unchanged or increased. The blood non-protein nitrogen and urea nitrogen are increased in starvation. On the rice diet, they are decreased. Blood volume and interstitial fluid volume are unchanged or increased in starvation. On the rice diet they are decreased. The nitrogen balance is negative in starvation. On the rice diet, it is in equilibrium.' " (p. 156)
"Dr. Kempner ...found that hemoglobin and serum protein levels stayed constant, sometimes increased, on the strict rice diet, and that the high-carbohydrate diet provided calories sufficient to spare body protein. Moreover, he ascertained that the protein in rice supplied adequate amounts of essential amino acids and was particularly easily absorbed. The fact that nephrotic children treated with the rice diet grew healthfully provided additional evidence that the protein content of the rice diet was adequate." (p. 185)
"More fundamentally, thanks to his research, the essential roles of sodium, fat and cholesterol in a variety of diseases--although still not given their full due--are increasingly acknowledged in current medical practice. In a symposium honoring Dr. Kempner in 1974, one of his former associates pointed out the areas where Dr. Kempner's contributions become the basis of modern therapy: 'The restriction of sodium in the treatment of hypertension and cardiovascular renal disease is today, as a consequence of Kempner's research, standard practice.... [C]urrent recommendations state that "every effort should be made by the physician to control the symptomatic, maturity-onset diabetic with diet alone ... The principles established with this [rice diet] by Kempner's work, in extreme, now have been applied, in moderation, to all these medical problems. (Skyler 1974, p753)' " (p218)
"The pharmaceutical industry's success in winning over patients and physicians as well to drug treatment came not just from the force of its marketing but from cultural trends as well. Advertising and technology have created in our society the expectation of instant gratification with minimal effort. The rice diet, however, as Dr. Kempner repeatedly preached, requires commitment to a sustained effort, for which our tolerance seems to be nearly extinct. ... As multiple drug therapy has become the norm in treating patients with the multiple 'disease' sequelae of modern lifestyles, it has brought its own hazards with it. We read with distressing frequency of inadequate drug trials, under-reporting of side effects, unexpected drug interactions, and lack of oversight of drug administration. Moreover, it is too early to say what possible ill effects will be produced by the long-term use of potent chemicals." (p. 223)
Thankfully, the diet itself must be separated from the man who brought it into the world. I think there is more to the sodium key than even Dr. K. knew. Although the scientific evidence of how sodium triggers adrenaline is a real key puzzle piece for me personally that no one else has ever mentioned, and it was an almost-in-passing comment in Newborg's book.
Also thankfully, due to my persistent research into this area, I have found the other half of the puzzle piece---increasing potassium intake while simultaneously decreasing sodium is exactly the necessary information for better health for which I have searched for years. Dr. K was an advocate of the first half--restricting sodium. Richard D. Moore, M.D., Ph.D, author of The High Blood Pressure Solution: A Scientifically Proven Program for Preventing Strokes and Heart Disease, has brought the second half of the puzzle to light. Taking care of the sodium-potassium pump in every cell in our bodies is truly the key to health!
In the end, I am glad I read the book, mostly for the quotes I excerpted above. While the book wasn't quite as I expected it to be, and some of the biographical information about Dr. K. rather disturbing, I am glad I gave it a read.
If you are looking for biographical info on Dr. Kempner, this is definitely the book to read. If you are looking for more scientific information about the rice diet, this book might give you some vital information. If you are wanting to know how to improve your health in amazing ways, I suggest Dr. Moore's book, The High Blood Pressure Solution: A Scientifically Proven Program for Preventing Strokes and Heart Disease. And if you are simply interested in following the rice diet for weight loss and improved health, then I suggest bypassing all other rice diet books and just buying The Rice Diet Cookbook. It has good recipes, a full 3 week menu making the diet easier to begin and follow, and condenses everything you need to know about the rice diet and a few opening chapters. It is much recommended over any other rice diet books.
Dr Kempner's work positively illustrates the ability to reverse & actually cure many ailments that plague western populations by diet alone. Sadly, the popularity of his findings were swept under the radar as medicine in the modern world advanced along with with its cohorts of technology and chemistry alongside the increasing ability to process & mass produce food. These new modalities trade on Wall Street & make millions of dollars with complete disregard for ethics at the expense of our health & welfare. Developed populations are now sicker than ever. Thank you Dr Kempner for teaching us real medicine!