The Family Nutrition Book: Everything You Need to Know about Feeding Your Children from Birth Through Adolescence

William Sears, Author, Martha Sears, Joint Author Little Brown and Company $35 (432p) ISBN 978-0-316-77716-2

In this vivid and ambitious guide to feeding a family, the Searses, William a doctor and Martha a nurse, shed light on the attributes of food: here brown sugar is ""ordinary table sugar made brown by adding molasses,"" and the blues, reds and purples of fruits and vegetables veil vitamin deposits. Onions and garlic tame the damaging effects of fried oil; meat and vegetables eaten in combination amount to more than the sum of their parts; and cinnamon can masquerade as sugar. A wealth of nutrition information is smoothly presented, complete with accessible scientific explanations, behavior modification tips and framed asides--all organized into minichapters with such titles as ""Powerful Proteins"" and ""The Joy of Soy."" The book progresses from an overview of nutrients (water and fiber among them) to an extensive evaluation of food groups, including discussions of vegetarianism, organic foods and decoding packaging labels. Additional sections address weight control and the specific roles various foods play in disease prevention, stamina building, etc. Reference tables and an updated food pyramid will prove indispensable to the reader. Agent, Denise Marcil. TV satellite tour. (Sept.)