Take this book in small doses to avoid a strong case of hypochondriasis. Galton, a prodigious and prolific medical writer, bursts with knowledge about the organ that lies at the end of the gullet and others beyond. The review of normal physiology is fine, but as you begin to tread the byways of nutrition, reading about every vitamin, mineral, major or minor trace element, you begin to squirm. Am I getting enough chromium? Selenium? Folic acid? Not to mention fiber. . . .The message is loud and clear: eat a well-balanced diet of natural foods (seven groups are suggested). Avoid sugar, white flour, other refinements. Galton touches on most contemporary theories involving diet and disease (in relation to diabetes, atherosclerosis, cancer, gallstones, colonic disorders, for example). He is a bit compulsive on obesity (is it really reaching epidemic proportions?) but interesting in describing factors other than excessive calories that influence the laying down of fatty tissue. At the end he takes up major gut problems, courses of treatment, and currently available drugs. The book's many sub-topics, each given a page or more--from the initial journey through the stomach to the last entry under tranquilizers--create a relentless flow that just might irritate a nervous stomach. Taken tidbit by tidbit, however, there is much digestible food for thought.