Helmut Hauser had a normal happy childhood until he contracted tuberculosis of the hip when he was sixteen. His parents sent him to a sanatorium in Switzerland run by a doctor named Benedict Lust.
Dr Lust was the founder of American naturopathy and the author of a book on zone therapy. Dr Harold Dick was also a naturopath who became interested in this field when he was miraculously cured of boils and his sister in law expelled a cancerous tumour through her vagina – all thanks to one of Dr Lust’s follower’s, Dr Carroll.
Helmut was so impressed with Dr Lust‘s cure that he decided to devote his life to the promotion of nutrition, health and beauty. For this venture he adopted the new name of Gayelord Hauser and launched Swiss Kriss Laxatives.
Inspired by this early success Gayelord moved himself and his well-cleansed bowels to pre-War Hollywood where he found a welcoming milieu: the narcissistic youth-obsessed movie community. Soon Marlene and Gloria and all the girls were in the thrall of the good-looking “doctor” who promised to add years to their pampered lives while making them even more beautiful.
Nobody was immune to the audacious and over-reaching pronouncements of Herr Hauser:
- “Lack of calcium produces fear of the dark, nail biting and gossiping.”
- “Worry turns the hair grey by destroying the adrenal glands.”
- “Blackstrap molasses will add five years to your life and re-grow hair on bald spots.”
Was he a quack? Maybe just a little bit, but so what! At least he had charisma and fabulosity. When he wasn’t lounging around his groovy pad in Sicily with his boyfriend Frey Brown and his longtime beard Greta Garbo, or playing canasta with Paulette Goddard and the Duchess of Windsor, he was snapping up 90210 real estate. Gayelord was cool because he took his gay tubercular hip and made an unstoppable brand out of it. Having bought whole chunks of Rodeo Drive when it was cheap, he died a wealthy poofter at the ripe old age of 89.