This section is from the book "The Home Hand-Book of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine. Volume 2.", by J. H. Kellogg, M.D.. Also available from Amazon: The Home Hand-Book of Domestic Hygiene and Rational Medicine, Volume 2.
Slow and feeble or irregular and frequent pulse; shortness of breath on exertion; occasional pain in the region of the heart; attacks of faintness or unconsciousness, somewhat resembling apoplexy; sometimes presence of arcus senilus, or white ring around the edge of the cornea.
There are two kinds of fatty degeneration of the heart, one in which the heart is overloaded with fat, and the other in which the muscular fibres of the heart are replaced by fat.
The principal causes of both varieties of fatty degeneration are, gluttony, the use of alcoholic drinks, and excessive use of fat foods. It is also sometimes the result of Bright's disease of the kidneys and poisoning with phosphorus.
The great danger to be apprehended in this disease is sudden rupture of the heart, upon a slight exertion, on account of the weakening of its walls. If the disease has not existed too long a time, a cure may take place through careful attention to diet and hygienic rules together with an avoidance of the special causes which may have produced the affection. The patient must also avoid all violent exercise of all sorts. He should not allow himself to become excited or angry under any circumstances, as a fit of anger is as dangerous for him as a dose of poison. Violent exercise of all sorts, as in lifting heavy weights, running to catch a train, hurrying up stairs, or straining to relieve the bowels in constipation, must be carefully avoided. Sugar, fat, all condiments, must be thoroughly discarded.