Gazzaniga, Donald A. 1934(?)-

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Gazzaniga, Donald A. 1934(?)-

PERSONAL:

Born c. 1934; children: five. Education: University of Southern California, B.A., 1956. Hobbies and other interests: Painting, fishing, hiking.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Loomis, CA. Office— Megaheart.com, P.O. Box 1247, Newcastle, CA 95658. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Writer, chef, and food expert. Creator of Megaheart.com Web site. Retired owner of television and film production services company; chef and writer on low-sodium recipes and heart-healthy activities.

WRITINGS:

A Few Good Men (novel), Signet (New York, NY), 1989.

The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Cookbook: Hundreds of Recipes Created to Combat Congestive Heart Failure and Dangerous Hypertension, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 2000.

(With daughter, Jeannie Gazzaniga Moloo) The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Baking Book, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 2003.

(With Maureen A. Gazzaniga) The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Light Meals Book, Thomas Dunne Books (New York, NY), 2005.

SIDELIGHTS:

While still in his early sixties, Donald A. Gazzaniga faced a life-changing diagnosis. Stricken with congestive heart failure, he was put on a waiting list for a heart transplant and told he might have as little as six months to live. The diagnosis was devastating to Gazzaniga, the father of five children and grandfather of ten. His doctors suggested that he severely limit his salt intake and try to ingest no more than 1,500 to 2,000 milligrams of sodium per day. A lifelong avocational chef, Gazzaniga decided to try to use even less salt than his doctors recommended. By baking his own bread and seeking out the lowest sodium ingredients, he was able to reduce his sodium intake to 500 milligrams or less per day. His heart trouble improved without the need for surgery.

Gazzaniga has collected his no-salt, low-sodium recipes in three collections: The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Cookbook: Hundreds of Recipes Created to Combat Congestive Heart Failure and Dangerous Hypertension; The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Baking Book; and The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Light Meals Book. Within these books, readers seeking a reduced sodium diet can find hundreds of recipes, as well as a twenty-eight-day meal planner, utilizing dishes that are familiar and generally easy to prepare. Gazzaniga has supplemented his books with a Web site, Megaheart. com, where visitors can find some of his recipes and many other suggestions for reducing sodium in their daily diet.

Gazzaniga describes his medical ordeal in The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Cookbook, prompting a Publishers Weekly contributor to remark that while the collection may be a cookbook, it "reads like high drama." Gazzaniga describes how many prepared and processed foods became off-limits for him due to their high sodium content. However, he offers hope for others on a restricted sodium diet, offering suggestions for finding no-salt canned goods, using lowest-sodium baking powder, and even identifying an acceptable brand of no-salt ketchup. Gazzaniga provides recipes for lowand no-sodium dishes for every part of the meal, from salads to entrees to desserts. He focuses on recipes "that are easy, tasty, and fit into heart patients' treatment regimens," noted Library Journal reviewer Janet M. Schneider. The Publishers Weekly critic of The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Cookbook concluded that Gazzaniga "dishes up a cookbook that's … creative and satisfying."

In The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Baking Book, Gazzaniga continues his quest to offer heart patients and other sodium-conscious readers recipes that reduce or eliminate salt but do not sacrifice flavor. He includes more than one hundred recipes for breads, muffins, pastries, cookies, pretzels, and other popular types of baked goods. The book also benefits from Gazzaniga's collaboration with daughter Jeannie, a licensed nutritionist and food expert. In her Library Journal review of The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Baking Book, Pauline Baughman praised the "tempting recipes" and called the work a "unique title."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, March 15, 2003, review of The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Baking Book, p. 1264.

Library Journal, November 15, 2000, Janet M. Schneider, review of The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Cookbook: Hundreds of Recipes Created to Combat Congestive Heart Failure and Dangerous Hypertension, p. 88; March 15, 2003, Pauline Baughman, review of The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Baking Book, p. 106.

Publishers Weekly, November 20, 2000, review of The No-Salt, Lowest-Sodium Cookbook, p. 62.

ONLINE

Chfpatients.com,http://www.chfpatients.com/ (December 20, 2006), biography of Donald A. Gazzaniga.

Megaheart.com,http://www.megaheart.com (March 23, 2004), Donald A. Gazzaniga home page.