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Books received


Food composition data: Production, management and use. H. Greenfield and D. A. T. Southgate. Elsevier Science Publishers, Barking, Essex, England, 1992. (ISBN 1-85166-8810) 243 pages, hardback. 70/ US$140.

This EUROFOODS/ENFANT-INFOODS volume is a long-awaited update of the 1974 Southgate Guidelines for the Preparation of Tables of Food Composition. It systematically and authoritatively covers the initiation and organization of a food composition database programme, the selection of foods and nutrients to include, sampling, choice of analytical methods, quality control, conventions and modes of expression of data, and guidelines for use.

For those responsible for compiling food composition databases, this is an essential companion to Food Composition Data: A User's Perspective edited by William Rand et al., Identification of Food Components for INFOODS Data Interchange by John Klensin et al., Compiling Data for Food Composition Data Bases by William Rand et al., and INFOODS Food Composition Data Interchange Handbook by John Klensin (all available from the United Nations University Press, 53-70 Jingumae, 5-chome, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150, Japan).

It is unfortunate that the price of this volume is so high, but reduced-price copies may be available from EUROFOODS/ENFANT, c/o Dr. Clive West, Department of Human Nutrition, Wageningen Agricultural University, P.O. Box 8129, 6700 EV Wageningen, Netherlands.

 

The contribution of nutrition to human and animal health. E. M. Widdowson and J. C. Mathers. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, England, 1992. (ISBN 0-521-42064-4) 407 pages, hardback. UK 60.

A series of major reviews by influential scientists, mainly from Great Britain, detail the contribution which nutrition research has made and continues to make to the health of people and animals. Published on the occasion of the golden jubilee of the Nutrition Society, the book offers state-of-the-art chapters on energy and the major nutrients, including vitamins and trace minerals, and their influence on reproduction, lactation, growth, and development. In addition, chapters on undernutrition in Germany in the post-war period by E. Widdowson, kwashiorkor in Uganda by R. G. Whitehead, protein-energy malnutrition in Jamaica by J. C. Waterlow, and food and nutrition policies in wartime by D. F. Hollingsworth are important contributions to the history of nutrition. Scholars and students with a permanent interest in human nutrition will want this book on their shelves.

 

Nutrient modulation of the immune response. Edited by Susanna Cunningham-Rundles. Marcel Dekker, New York, 1993. (ISBN 0-8247-8448-0) 556 pages, hardback. US$165.

This is the latest in a series of books published over the last decade that highlight and document interactions between nutrition and immunity. Work described in the book strongly supports a direct role of nutrients as important cofactors and regulators of immune response. It also confirms that an excess of certain nutrients may promote or exacerbate the development of disease. The authors are well chosen, and the 52 chapters contain the most complete review of this subject to date. They cover the expression of nutrient interaction in immune function, the effect of nutritional conditioning on immune response, nutrient modulation of immune response in human development and disease, and issues and implications in nutrient-immune system interactions. The book is highly recommended for those desiring the most recent information on interactions of nutrition and immunity at this level of detail and comprehensiveness.

 

Food, nutrition and chemical toxicity. Edited by Dennis V. Parke, Costas Ioannides, and Ronald Walker. Smith-Gordon, London, 1993. (ISBN 185463-072-5) 451 pages, paperback.

Recent scientific advances in molecular biology and genetics have revealed some of the complex interrelationships of food with toxicology, nutrition with detoxification, and diet with the prevention of degenerative disease. The 40 chapters in this book review the relationships between chemical toxicity and nutritional needs, dietary protein and reactive oxygen compounds, chemicals diet and cancer, and international and regulatory considerations. The book authoritatively summarizes current knowledge in this rapidly advancing interface of nutrition.

It cites evidence that (1) oxygen radicals are the ultimate molecular events in the pathology associated with most, if not all, disease states from viral and bacterial infections to cardiovascular disease and cancer; (2) chemical toxicity is ultimately due to oxygen radicals, either because the toxic chemicals deplete the body's protective reserves or actually generate oxygen radicals by various mechanisms; (3) the biological systems that protect against reactive oxygen compounds are largely dependent on adequate nutrition for the continuous replenishment of body antioxidant enzymes and scavengers; (4) toxic chemicals impact on nutrition; and (5) nutritional supplementation may benefit patients and industrial workers exposed to toxic chemicals.

 

Essential and toxic trace elements in human health and disease: An update. Edited by Ananda S. Prasad. Wiley-Liss, New York, 1993. (ISBN 0-47159109-2) 391 pages, hardback.

Advances have been rapid in clinical, nutritional, and biochemical understanding of the role of trace elements in human metabolism. This monograph has nine contributed chapters on zinc, two on selenium, and one each on copper, chromium, and manganese. Surprisingly, there is also a chapter on iron, limited to the regulation of iron absorption. Six chapters deal with specialized trace mineral topics such as free radicals, Alzheimer's dementia, neurogenerative diseases, analysis, and human requirements. A final chapter deals with the remaining ultra-trace elements boron, nickel, silicon, vanadium, bromine, lead, molybdenum, and tin. While this book contains some useful new information, it is not a substitute for a more comprehensive text on the subject.

 

Proposals that work: A guide for planning dissertations and grant proposals. 2nd ed. Lawrence F. Locke, Waneen Wyrick Spirduso, and Stephen J. Silverman. Sage Publications, Newbury Park, Calif., USA, 1987. (ISBN 0-8039-2987-0) 272 pages, paperback. US$19.50.

Writing proposals to obtain funds is an essential part of the research process, but it is often one of the most difficult parts for all scientists, particularly those in developing countries. It is often done poorly, and there are few places to turn for help. While this guide is oriented toward qualitative health research in the social sciences, the detailed advice it gives on the functions, development, content, preparation, style and format, and financing of research proposals applies to all types of nutrition- and health-related population studies. Four specimen proposals are included, along with appendices on the use of human subjects and criteria for judging the acceptability and quality of research proposals. Both experienced and novice research-proposal writers will find this to be a valuable reference.

 

Proposal writing. Soraya M. Coley and Cynthia A. Scheinberg. Sage Publications, Newbury Park, Calif., USA, 1990. (ISBN 0-8039-3232-4) 130 pages, paperback. US$15.

This small manual provides advice and examples that will be useful to both experienced and inexperienced proposal writers. Although it was developed primarily as a guide for human-services proposals in the United States, the principles apply to all kinds of international and research programmes in the health sciences.

 

Biotechnology: Enhancing research on tropical crops in Africa. Edited by G. Thottappilly, L. M. Monti, D. R. Mohan Raj, and A. W. Moore. Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), Wageningen, Netherlands, 1992. (ISBN 978131-090-1) 364 pages, hardback.

 

The health of women: A global perspective. Edited by Marge Koblinsky, Judith Timyan, and Jill Gay. Westview Press, Boulder, Colo., USA, 1993. (ISBN 0-8133-8500-8) 290 pages, hardback, US$49.95. (ISBN 0-8133-1608-1) Paperback, US$16.95.

 

Body composition and physical performance: Applications for the military services. Edited by Bernadette M. Marriott and Judith Grumstrup-Scott. National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., USA, 1992. (ISBN 0-309-04586-X) 356 pages, paperback. US$36.

 

Methods in enzymology. Vol. 213, Carotenoids, part A: Chemistry, separation, quantitation, and antioxidation. Edited by Lester Packer. Academic Press San Diego, Calif., USA, 1992. (ISBN 0-12-1821 14-5) Hardback. US$79.

 

Methods in enzymology. Vol. 214, Carotenoids, part B: Metabolism, genetics, and biosynthesis. Edited by Lester Packer. Academic Press, San Diego, Calif., USA, 1993. (ISBN 0-12-182115-3) 468 pages, hardback. US$75.


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