THE WAY OF HOPE: Michio Kushi's Anti-AIDS Program by Tom Monte

THE WAY OF HOPE: Michio Kushi's Anti-AIDS Program

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KIRKUS REVIEW

After decades of controversial claims of cancer cures, macrobiotic leader Michio Kushi has taken up the treatment of AIDS. The movement has muted its claims, its wilder assertions, and its opposition to conventional medical treatment. Also, since the macrobiotic founders first attacked the standard American diet, both have changed: the specific regimen recommended here is not so far from a Japanese-accented version of now-mainstream dietary guidelines. This report by the coauthor of Dr. Anthony Sattilaro's Summoned by Life (1982), about Sattilaro's recovery from cancer after taking up a macrobiotic diet, tells the less spectacular story of 20 Manhattan homosexual AIDS patients, nine of whom died in the course of the study. But the participating immunologist has reported positive findings, among them an early significant rise in the immune system's crucial T4 cells, considerable subjective improvement in many of the study's ten ""core"" members, and the continuing, apparent good health of some. Monte's narrative, journalistic account interweaves the core patients' life stories with some background on the macrobiotic system, the AIDS epidemic, and the workings of the immune system; a Kushi lecture to the group; some sappy East-West wisdom (says cooking teacher Mrs. Aveline Kushi, ""watch and listen to the carrot; it will tell you how long to cook it""), and some unsystematic, insufficiently quantified description of the project. It's all very readable and likely to be debated in that community where hope is in short supply.

Pub Date: Sept. 7th, 1989
Publisher: Warner