Diet In Health and Disease

Diet In Health and Disease

PREFACE.

THE aims of this Handbook are purely practical, and there-
fore it has not been thought right to increase its size by the
addition of the chemical, botanical, and industrial learning which
rapidly collects round the nucleus of every article interesting as
an eatable. Space has been thus gained for a full discussion of
many matters connecting food and drink with the daily current
of social life, which the position of the Author as a practicing
physician has led him to believe highly important to the present
and future of our race.

THOMAS KING CHAMBERS
24 MOUNT STREET, GROSVENOR SQUARE

CONTENTS.

PART I.

CHAPTER PAGE

I. THEORIES OF DIETETICS, ........ 17

II. ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD, ....... 29

III. ON THE PREPARATION OF FOOD, 87

IV. ON DIGESTION, . . . 101

Y. NUTRITION. .......... 122

PART II.

SPECIAL DIETETICS OF HEALTH.

I. REGIMEN OF INFANCY AND MOTHERHOOD, .... 125

II. REGIMEN OF CHILDHOOD AND YOUTH, 134

III. COMMERCIAL LIFE, 140

IV. LITERARY AND PROFESSIONAL LIFE, 144

V. Noxious TRADES, 152

VI. ATHLETIC TRAINING, 155

VII. HINTS FOR HEALTHY TRAVELERS, 169

VIII. EFFECTS OF CLIMATE, 175

IX. STARVATION, POVERTY, AND FASTING, 184

X. THE DECLINE OF LIFE, . 197

XI. ALCOHOL, 200

Vlll CONTENTS.

PART III.

DIETETICS IN SICKNESS.

CHAPTER PACK

I. DIETETICS AND REGIMEN OF ACUTE FEVERS, . . . 231
II. THE DIET AND REGIMEN OF CERTAIN OTHER INFLAMMATORY

STATES, 245

III. THE DIET AND REGIMEN OF WEAK DIGESTION, . . . 252

IV. GOUT AND RHEUMATISM, 261

V. GRAVEL, STONE, ALBUMINURIA, AND DIABETES, . . . 270

VI. DEFICIENT EVACUATION 278

VII. NERVE DISORDERS, 282

VIII. SCROFULA, RICKETS, AND CONSUMPTION 294

IX. DISEASE OF HEART AND ARTERIES, 301

ALPHABETICAL INDEX, 307

DIET AND REGIMEN.

I.

GENERAL DIETETICS.

CHAPTER I.

THEORIES OF DIETETICS.

WHAT is the natural food of man ?

Each animal in a state of nature finds substances suited for its
nutrition ready to hand, and within the grasp of the instruments
he possesses for their acquisition. And these substances seem,
generally, the most proper to sustain the health and strength. So
that it has been not irrationally argued, that it would be a useful
act of scientific reasoning to infer from the structure of the human
organs what kind of food they are most fitted to appropriate, for
this would probably prove most conducive to physical well-being.

When, in pursuit of this reasoning, we come to compare man's
form with that of other mammalia, his prehensile organs his
teeth, his jaws, and his feet and his nails do not seem to fit him
for grappling with any of the difficulties which the adoption of
special kinds of food prepared by nature entails. He can neither
tear his prey conveniently, nor crack many nuts, nor grub roots,
nor graze. His digestive viscera, in middle life, are too bulky
and heavy to qualify him for the rapid movements of the car-
nivora; and they are not long enough to extract nourishment from
raw vegetables. To judge by form and structure, alone, the natu-
ral food of an adult man must be pronounced to be nothing.

On the other hand, if we read the laws of man's nature by the

2

18 GENERAL DIETETICS.

light of the general consent of the individuals of his race, which
is the wisest course, 1 we shall arrive at the opposite conclusion,
that his food is everything which any other warm-blooded animal
can use as nourishment. If we try to construct a universal diet-
ary from the records which each new traveller brings home of
what he has beheld habitually eaten, we shall find very few forms
of organic matter, capable of supporting mammalian life, which
are not appropriated by man also to his own use. By selection
and preparation he contrives to remove such parts and such quali-
ties of the substances presented by nature as are noxious to him,
and to improve such as suit his purpose ; so that as finally swal-
lowed, they are more wholesome to him than to the beasts who eat
nothing else. These lists of possible eatables are most interesting
to the student of human nature; they lead to inferences as to the
action of laws, religions, customs, and associations, in making that
abominable to one race which is most highly appreciated by
another, and they are an important part of the arguments of those
who trace political events and national character to physical causes;
but they are not suited to the present volume, which will concern
itself with the action on individual health of food generally acces-
sible in the British market. Reference may be occasionally made
to a more extended materia alimentarla, but it can contribute little
to the main arguments proposed.

The power by virtue of which man becomes so truly omnivor-
ous is habit. He can gradually, in time, accustom himself to live
on anything containing nourishment, provided he be not limited
in quantity, nor restricted in facilities for preparation. The in-
ferior animals could do the sante if they only knew how to set
about it ; for when we bring our reason to bear on their lives, we
can effect what at first sight seem most radical changes in their
nature, in respect of food ; and we can even induce and perpetu-
ate hereditary forms of body suited to the altered circumstances
we have brought about. Spallanzani found that pigeons may be
fed on flesh, and eagles on bread, by accustoming them to it ; the
domestic dog grows strong on biscuit, and often suffers in health
on being brought back to his native food ; our poultry is more

1 " Consensus omnium nationum lex naturae putancla est." Cicero de Legi-
biea, i, 8.

THEORIES OF DIETETICS. 19

robust, more fertile, and apparently happier, for being supplied
with meat, fat, or soup, and our cats have accommodated them-
selves to a mixed diet, assimilating their form to that of herbivora,
by a considerable increase in the length of their bowels over those
owned by their cousins of the mountains. The speechless creatures
have not the wits to acquire unaided these new powers; compulsory
education is necessary ; even for such a simple process as learning
to eat turnips, the lamb requires a shepherd to stand over him
and forcibly make him chew. Man's chief bodily strength de-
pends on his willingness to submit to the pain of acquiring habits,
and on his forcing his domestic stock to submit to it, for the sake
of a future advantage.

The solvent actions of the juices of the intestinal canal on food
seem to be the same in quality in all classes of animals, and to
admit of modification in the proportions of their ingredients ac-
cording to the diet adopted. Under vegetable food the saliva
becomes more copious, under meat there is more gastric juice.
The bile of a grazing ox is more watery than that of a man ; the
bile of a growing boy (who can digest any amount of meat) was
found by Gorup-Besanez 1 to contain nearly double the amount of
solid contained in that of an old woman (whose age would dispose
her to be very little carnivorous).

This shows the importance of what may be called the prepara-
tory or mechanical parts of digestion. The digestive solvents can
evidently grow equal to all emergencies of the chemical acts re-
quired of them, and the differences in the results of those acts must
mainly hang on the mechanical condition of the substances pre-
sented to them. Fortunate indeed is it that such is the case, for
the mechanical condition of the food is certainly more fully in our
power, and more easily influenced by our reason, than the chemi-
cal solvency of the secretions. We can choose, according to its
hardness, softness, and other external qualities, the sort of victual
we put in our mouths ; we can prepare it with art, can regulate
its bulk and the period of taking it; while the muscles which
chew it and swallow it are almost entirely under our direction.
But it is only very indirectly that we can influence the saliva, the
gastric and pancreatic juices, and the bile.

1 Untersuchungen iiber d. Galle, Erlangen, 1846. The relative proportions
of solid matter were 17.19 per cent, as against 9.13 per cent.

20 GENERAL DIETETICS.

Assuming, then, that man can easily accommodate himself to a
varied and mixed diet that he has, as a matter of fact, accom-
modated himself to it and that, therefore, it will in future, as in
the past, best suit his requirements the next point of interest is
the proportion which its several ingredients should bear to one
another.

Physiologists have pointed out that in the preparation made
for the infant at its entrance into life, and which is a striking in-
stance to the faithful mind of a controlling design in creation, we
have a typical instance of what the All-wise considered a suitable
dietary. Looking to its qualitative composition, we find milk
contains alimentary principles capable of separating themselves,
and, in fact, habitually separated for economical purposes, some-
what in the following proportions :

Water, 88 per cent.

Oleaginous matter (cream, butter), 3 "

Nitrogenous matter (cheese and albumen), . 4 "
Hydrocarbon (sugar), . . . . 4J "

Saline matter (phosphate of lime, chloride of

sodium, iron, etc.), "

This rough average is the best way of stating the facts for phys-
iological purposes; since, as every mother, physician, and far-
mer knows, the proportions vary considerably in different speci-
mens of even the same species of animal, and are influenced by
differences in the mode of living. The argument is, that there
or thereabouts, may be found the ratio which there should be in
our dietary, in the amounts of the alimentary substances of which
the above may be taken as representatives. That is to say, that,
supposing a man to consume 200 ounces of victual daily, the con-
tents should be about

6 quarts of water,

J a Ib. of animal matter, such as cheese, or lean meat, or eggs,

6 ozs. of fat, oil, or butter,

9 ozs. of sugar or starch,

1 oz. of salt, and some small quantity of bone or iron.

A serious flaw in this argument is that while the dietary is pre-
pared for, and truly suits very well, the newly born, we have no
evidence that either it is intended for, or would suit better than

THEORIES OF DIETETICS.

21

another, the adult. The milk of our domestic animals so closely
resembles that which supported us in infancy, that if we carried
the reasoning out to its logical consequences, we should all be
feeding together now at the same manger. If the milk represents
what the adult ought to make his diet, our bull would require
only a little more butter, and our horse only a little less than we
do; our goat would want one-third more meaty or nitrogenous
matter to be contained in the food than ourselves; and the dog
would require five times the proportion of flesh that is laid on his
master's table to be afforded him. 1 In point of fact, the life led
by the young of all animals is much the same, whereas in adult
age they differ widely in their occupations, and in the demand for
the sort of viands best adapted to those occupations.

There is greater promise of profit to the dietician in a calcula-
tion of the outgoings of matters resulting from the wear and tear
of the body, reducing these to ultimate elementary substances, and
thus ascertaining in what proportion to one another new supplies
of ultimate elementary substances are required, merely to replace
those consumed. It is obvious that the food which supplies the
demand most accurately will be the most economical in the highest
sense. "We can measure, for example, the carbon and the nitro-
gen daily thrown off in the excretions, and then lay down a rule
for the minimum quantity of those elements which the daily food
must contain to keep up the standard weight. If the diet is such
as to make it necessary to eat too much carbon in order to secure
a due amount of nitrogen, there is an obvious waste, and the di-

1 The computation of the ingredients of milk is a deduction from the fol-
lowing table of M. Boussingault's analysis:

Milk of

Water,
per cent.

Casein and
Albumen.

Butter.

Sugar of
Milk.

Salts.

Woman, . . .
Cow,

88.9
86.6

3.9
4.0

2.6
4.0

4.3

4.8

0.1
6

Ass, ....

90.3

1.9

1.0

6.4

4

Mare, ....
Goat,

90.9
84 9

3.3
6.0

1.2
4.2

4.3
4.4

0.5
5

Sheep, ....

Dos, .

86.5
77.9

4.5

15.8

4.2
5.1

6.0
4.1

0.7
1.0

22 GENERAL DIETETICS.

gestive viscera are burdened with a useless load. The same reck-
oning can be applied to the lime, sulphur, phosphorus, oxygen,
and hydrogen, which go towards building up and renewing the
tissues of the body. The dietary must contain these, or the body
must waste away by the unstayed drain of destructive assimila-
tion; and if it contains any notable excess, not only is it uneco-
nomical, but may be pernicious to the health.

Suppose, for instance, a gang of a hundred average prisoners to
excrete in the shape of breathed air, urine, and fseces, daily 71 J Ibs.
of carbon and 4J Ibs. of nitrogen, which is pretty nearly the
actual amount of those elements contained in the dried solids of
the secretions, as estimated in current physiological works. Ni-
trogen and carbon to that extent, at least, must be both supplied.
Now, if you fed them on bread and water alone, it would require
at least 380 Ibs. of bread daily to keep them alive for long; for it
takes that weight to yield the 4J Ibs. of nitrogen daily excreted.
But in 380 J Ibs. of bread there are 128| Ibs. of carbon, which is
57 Ibs. above the needful quantity of that substance. 1

If, on the other hand, you replaced the bread by a purely ani-
mal diet, you would have to find 354 Ibs. of lean meat in order
to give them the needful 71 J Ibs. of carbon ; and thus there would
be wasted 105 Ibs. of nitrogen which is contained in the meat,
over and above the 4^ Ibs. really required to prevent loss of
weight. 2

In the former case, each man would be eating about 4 Ibs. of
bread, in the latter, 3J Ibs. of meat per diem. If he ate less, he
would lose his strength. In the former case, there would be a
quantity of starch, and in the latter, a quantity of albuminous
matter, which would not be wanted for nutrition, and would
burden the system with a useless mass very liable to decompose
and become noxious.

1 Dr. Letheby's Analysis gives 8.1 per cent, of nitrogenous matter to bread
(Lectures on Food, p. 6). Of this } is nitrogen; Boussingault's analysis of
gluten giving 14.60 per cent. (Ann. de Chim. et Phys., Ixiii, 2*29). M. Payen
makes the proportion of carbon to nitrogen in bread as 30 to 1.

2 The proportion of nitrogen to carbon in albumen is as 1 to 3 (15.5 to
53.5 by Mulder's analysis, quoted in Lehrnann's Phys. Chemie, i, 343). In
red meat there is 74 per cent, of water (ditto, iii, 96).

THEORIES OF DIETETICS. 23

Now, if a mixed dietary be adopted, 200 Ibs. of bread with
56 Ibs. of meat would supply all that is required. Besides water,

200 Ibs. of bread contains . . 60 of carbon . . 2 of nitrogen.
60 " meat (including 12J
Ibs. of fat upon it), .... 12 " . . 2 "

72 4\

Judged by the above standard, it will be clearly seen that milk
does not represent a typical diet for an adult population, the ni-
trogenous matter being in considerable excess in proportion to
the carbonaceous. This is suitable to the young animal, whose
main duty consists in growing, that is in appropriating an excess
of nitrogenous matter to form an addition to the body daily, but
not to the full-grown, who has to develop force, or its equiva-
lent, heat, by the combustion of carbon, and had rather not go on
growing.

Calculations such as these, applied to the other numerous,
though less bulky constituents of the body, are invaluable. They
afford a basis for the administration of food-supply to armies, na-
vies, prisons, and other bodies of men dependent upon us ; they
enable us to detect the causes of wasteful expenditure, and to
distribute limited means in an economical fashion. They tell us
why nations which, voluntarily or involuntarily, become depen-
dent on one kind of food for subsistence can never be wealthy,
for they devour and waste their substance ; and they teach states-
men how to avoid those ruinous revolutions, which, as has been
well observed, arise more often from want of food than from want
of liberty.

But the calculations must always be open to the correction of
continuous observation and experiment. Chemical analysis is
much too young an art to be infallible, and hitherto undetected
substances and conditions are, year by year, turning up, which
modify our conclusions. And a very wide margin must be left
for unforeseen contingencies, and a discretionary power be placed
in the hands of individuals, or there is a risk lest the adminis-
trator should have to regret making too precise a reckoning. He
whose income is only just equal to his expenditure, is always on
the brink of insolvency.

The most important modification required to be made arises

24 GENERAL DIETETICS.

out of the differences of work demanded. Men may languish in
solitary prisons, invalids may lie bedridden, paupers may wait for
better times, nations may idle away existence, on a scale of food-
supply which is followed by death from starvation when work is
demanded. How shall the effect of physical exertion be reckoned ?
Here the engineers have helped us with their precise and irrefrag-
able science. Joule of Manchester analyzed, about thirty years
ago, the relation which the heat used in machinery, as a source of
power, bore to the force of motion thus made active. He found
means of proving, that raising the temperature of a pound of
\vater one degree Fahrenheit was exactly equivalent to raising
772 Ibs. to the height of a foot. And, conversely, that the fall of
772 Ibs. might be so applied as to heat a pound of Avater one de-
gree Fahrenheit. Thus, the mechanical work represented in the
lifting 772 Ibs. a foot high, or one pound 772 feet high, forms the
" dyna'mic equivalent," the measure of the possible strength, of
one degree of temperature as marked by the thermometer. Phys-
iologists seized eagerly on the opportunity which Joule's demon-
stration seemed to afford them of estimating, in actual numerals,
the relation of living bodies to the work they have to do. So
much earth, raised on an embankment, represents so much heat
developed in the machinery, living or dead, muscle or steel, gang
of laborers or steam-engine, which raised it. Both muscle and
steel come equally under the great physical laws of the universe
which the far-sighted mechanician has expounded. Now, in the
animal frame, the supply of heat, and therefore the supply of ca-
pacity ibr work, is that which is developed from latency into
energy by the chemical actions, the ceaseless round of unending
change,, which is an inseparable part of life. The amount of fully
digested food, converted through several stages into gaseous,
liquid, and solid excretory matters, produces by its chemical
changes a definite amount of heat, of which a definite amount es-
capes, and a definite amount is employed in working the involun-
tary machinery of the body, and the rest is available for conver-
sion at will into voluntary muscular action. As the mechanician
allows for the effect of friction, etc., in making his calculations, so
the physiologist allows for the action of diffusion, conduction, im-
perfect secretion, and so on, in reckoning the quantity of heat
available, and allows also for the waste of mechanical power in-

THEORIES OF DIETETICS. 25

volved in the form and structure of the limbs. To make all
these allowances necessitates courses of experiments and calcula-
tions which have taken more than a generation, and will probably
take more than another generation to complete. But the road
seems clear, and already we have gained fruitful information as
to the sort of food by which we can expect to get most work out
of men and beasts; we have found the cause of many of our
failures in distributing victuals ; and we have learned how to avoid
much cruelty and injustice that our fathers unknowingly perpe-
trated.

It may be reckoned from experimental calculations, too long to
be inserted here, that the expenditure of force in working the
machinery of the body in raising the diaphragm about fifteen
times, and contracting the heart about sixty times a minute ; in
continuously rolling the wave of the intestinal canal ; and in
various other involuntary and voluntary movements which can-
not be avoided even by a mere cumberer of the ground, without
doing anything that can be called work it may be reckoned that
the expenditure of force in doing this is equal to that which
would raise a man of ten stone 10,000 feet. But a man cannot
even pick oakum without expending more force and requiring
more to support it. A prisoner on penal diet has half as much
again.

There are several reasons for believing that in assigning their
physiological functions to the several sorts of food, we should as-
cribe nearly all the business of giving birth to force to the solid
hydrocarbons, starch and fat, by their conversion into carbonic
acid, just as we have good grounds for thinking that it is the con-
version of the solid hydrocarbon, coal, into carbonic acid, which
drives our locomotives. It is not necessary to be acquainted with
every step of the process, which, in the body, we confessedly are
not, to appreciate the argument. To the nitrogenous aliments
seems allotted the task of continuously replacing the wear and
tear of the nitrogenous tissues. Flesh food, or that which comes
near it in nitrogenous contents, after a few changes replaces the
lost flesh which has passed away in excretions ; and thus the en-
gineer takes iron ore, makes it into wrought plates or steel, and
renews the corroded boiler-plate or worn piston-rod. One of the
most cogent of these reasons is that the chief nitrogen-holding

26 GENERAL DIETETICS.

excretion, the urea, is little, if at all, increased in quantity by an
increase in the work done : whereas the excretion of carbonic
acid, in a decided manner, follows the amount of muscular exer-
tion. Now it is very clear that if the supply of power to do
work depended on the renewal by food of the nitrogenous tissues,
and on their decomposition, the urea would have no escape from
being largely augmented in quantity by muscular efforts, and di-
minished by rest. This is not the case. At first, exercise dimin-
ishes the amount of urea (Parkes), and, even when continued,
very little increases it (E. Smith, Haughton and several others
quoted in Parkes's " Hygiene," p. 383). The very small increase
which takes place during the following rest may be attributed
fairly to the extra wear of the muscles from extra motion, just as
a steam-engine is expected to require more repair than usual when
in hard use. But that amount of repair demanded is as nothing,
compared with the increase in the tonnage of coal consumed.

To give an example of the mode of working out a problem by
this theory : Dr. Frankland ascertains with the calorimeter, which
calculates the amount of heat evolved as a thermometer does its
degree, the quantity of energy or force, under the form of heat,
evolved during the complete oxidation in the laboratory of a given
weight of alimentary substance. It was explained before, that
heat and mechanical work, being convertible into one another,
bear an eternally sure proportion to one another : now, and forever,
a definite production of so much heat represents the potentiality of
so much motion, used or wasted, according to circumstances. So
that from the reading of the calorimeter may be reckoned how
many extra pounds ought to be raised a foot high by a man who
has eaten an extra pound of the food in question ; how many steps
a foot high he ought to raise himself (say a weight of ten stone)
before he has worked out the value of his victuals. Dr. Frank-
land has thus estimated the comparative value of foods as bases of
muscular exertion, and he has made out a table of the weight and
cost of various articles that would require to be consumed in the
system to enable a man of ten stone to raise himself 10,000 feet.
This is equal to going up a ladder two miles and one-third high
a stiff" day's work. Three pounds and a half of lean beef at a cost
of at least 3s. Qd. would be wanted; but if little more than half a
pound of suet, worth about 5|e thoroughly
prime by being kept alive till their constitution has grown up
to their size. To illustrate the matter by our own race, a school-
boy of six foot one never becomes hearty till he is at least one or
two and twenty. But after that, the weedy youth may harden
and be a fine man. So indeed with these overgrown lambs, if
they are kept till four years old, the meat is very choice ; but of
course the temptation is to bring them to the butcher directly they
are as tall and broad as a real sheep ; and the farmer looks upon
himself as a benefactor to his species, as having made two animals
in the time formerly required to make one. But I hear with
sorrow of attempts being made to " improve," as it is called, the
Welsh breed, and trust they may be unsuccessful. A more promis-
ing statement is that Welsh mutton, in the London market, is
imitated by a cross between the Southdown and the Scotch. 1 We
may pardon the deception, if the meat is as good as its model.

A striking proof of how opposed .are the interests of the farmer
and of the consumer in the breeding of sheep is, that in the minute
experiments and calculations of the advantage of different breeds
and various modes of feeding, no attempt is made to reckon the
goodness of the dead meat. We are told the weight, but never
the quantity of osrnazome it contains, though the readiest possible
test in the tint of the gravy is very familiar to the eater.

To get good mutton in country places is now a serious problem,
and I would suggest to my professional brethren, who are of
course permanent residents, that they cannot confer a greater boon
on families in the same position of life as most of us are, that is to
say, not rich enough to have parks and farms, and yet willing to
pay a good price for a good article I say they cannot confer a

1 Macdonald, Cattle, Sheep, and Deer, p. 483.

34 GENEKAL DIETETICS.

greater benefit on these their neighbors, than by inducing them to
join in a " mutton club," buying the lambs of a full-sized breed,
and keeping them to at least three and a half years old before
killing. The price per pound will not be less than charged by
the butcher, but it will supply an article twice as good as his.

There has been felt a good deal of alarm, more I think than is
justifiable, during the last few years on the subject of the class of
parasites which are not uncommon in the flesh of all animals,
namely, the cysticwcus and the trichina ; and which, when suffi-
ciently numerous to be conspicuous, constitute what is called
" measly meat."

The cysticercus of the pig is the sort most frequently seen, form-
ing a cyst as large as a hemp-seed. Its commonest habitat is the
tongue, on the under surface of which it may be discovered even
without cutting into the interior. You may also find the oval
holes left by it when dried up in otherwise very perfect hams,
and opaque white specks, like seeds, intimately adherent to the
muscular fibres, which are its remains dried into calcareous mat-
ter. This measle-worm of the pig has been found by the indus-
trious German naturalist Kiichenmeister to be the undeveloped
embryo of the Tcenia sotium, the tape-worm of most usual occur-
rence in Great Britain. By keeping them alive in warm milk he
was able to watch the development of the animals. The cysticer-
cus of the ox is smaller, and is either rarer or seldoraer discovered
in this country. It becomes the Tcenia mediocanellata, the species
which infests the intestines of Germans, Swiss, and others, pro-
ducing exactly the same inconveniences as that with which we are
familiar. As the measle-worm of the mouse produces the peculiar
tape-worm of the cat (Tcenia crassicollis), as the brain hydatid of
the sheep (Qxnurus cerebralis) produces the Tcenia ccenurus in the
dog, so the minute larva which infests the flesh of our prey re-
venges itself on its natural enemy. An old boa-constrictor is
always a complete museum of tape-worms, derived from the various
living game which it has devoured.

Now, there is no doubt that the boiling temperature entirely
destroys the vitality of these creatures. When cooked they can
do us no more harm than a baked lion. So that it can very rarely,
if ever, happen in civilized countries for them to be transmitted
directly to human intestines. Another mode of communication

ON THE CHOICE OP FOOD. 35

must be thought of, and I think it is not far to seek. Though we
do not eat our food raw, dogs very often do, and they distribute
far and wide by their excreta all that escapes the solution of the
gastric juice. Thus the embryos get spread abroad on the earth,
into streams and wells, and especially in our kitchen gardens
among the materials of our solids. I had once brought to me a
child three years old, with tape-worm, a very rare thing at that
age, and thus affording peculiar facilities for detecting its origin.
It was the son of a sculptor in the suburbs of London, and all the
cooking arrangements of the family seemed perfect, as also their
water supply. But in the stone-yard, which had once been a gar-
den, grew a quantity of nasturtiums, and among these the baby
used to play, and sometimes ate the flowers and fruit. As the
yard was open to the road, it was much frequented by the dogs of
the neighborhood, and showed unmistakable signs of their pres-
ence. One could not question that here lay the carrier of the little
patient's troublesome inmate. The observant and enthusiastic
physician of Iceland, Dr. Hjalteliu, also informs me that intestinal
parasites are exceedingly common in that country, and that the
cause appears to be the distribution of their ova by stray dogs who
are always in and out of the kail gardens. Another possible
source of tcenia may be shell-fish, eaten raw, and often containing
in their stomachs minute organisms derived from decayed garbage
thrown away or used as bait. Only the other day I found in the
prehensile organs of a prawn a shred of animal fibre, and saw a
man fishing for crabs and prawns at the mouth of the Arun with
a piece of paunch. With all these possible sources of infection
there is no need to suspect butcher's meat, which is never eaten
raw except by some eccentric amateur savage.

The real evil of measly meat consists in its proueness to rapid
decomposition in spite of cookery, and to that may fairly be
credited cases of illness which are reputed to have followed itH
consumption. So that it is fair enough that all that is largely
infected should be destroyed. In France there used to be ap-
pointed to the markets officers called " langueyeurs" from their
inspecting the tongues of carcasses offered for sale; but their legal
authorization, and possible tyranny, seems to have given dissatis-
faction, for M. Delpech says they have no lawful authority, but
are employed simply as a warrant between buyer and seller.

36 GENERAL DIETETICS.

They have to report to the inspector of markets, usually a skilled
veterinarian, who judges if the quantity of measle-worm is suffi-
cient to render the meat unwholesome. The shoulder and the
breast are the parts usually examined as tests. 1

The Trichina spiralis is another parasitic inhabitant of live flesh,
of a more active character and of a higher grade in creation than
that last discussed ; for instead of being a solid worm like the
ta^nia, it is possessed of an intestine. 2 It is sometimes found in
human flesh and in pork, appearing as a minute white speck, just
visible to the naked eye, which constitutes its nest, in which one
or two curled-up specimens are seen, by a microscope, in active
movement, but prevented from doing harm by the cyst in which
they are imprisoned. The danger consists in its escape and won-
derfully rapid multiplication, under special circumstances not
very clearly defined ; for it exists at most times in considerable
numbers without giving rise to any symptoms whatever. But
there seems sufficient evidence that in a few instances an epidemic
has occurred of its invasion, in overpowering quantities at once,
of human bodies, through the food eaten. The symptoms are in-
flammatory fever and local lesions from the interstitial presence of
a mass of quickly increasing foreign bodies. But these instances
have been extremely rare. A few years ago a physiologist in this
metropolis, having become the fortunate possessor of some speci-
mens of live trichina, instantly invited a crowded conversazione of
medical men and others interested in the natural history of our
species, and introduced to them by means of the hydro-oxygen
microscope his acquisition. Very few of the party, if any, had
seen one before ; and very few, if any, have seen one since.

The trichina is said to cause degeneration of the muscular fibres
in its vicinity, so that the joints infested would not present the
healthy appearance described at the beginning of this section. It
is killed by the temperature of boiling water, PO that if a dish is
fairly cooked, it must be quite safe. The cases which have oc-
curred of its proving deleterious have been where the meat has
been eaten raw, or imperfectly warmed through and served cold,

1 Delpech, Diet, encycl. des sciences med., art. " Ladrerie : " an excellent
monograph on the subject, date 18C8.

2 Professor Owen has identified the trichina as one of the Coelelminlha, and
the College of Physicians has adopted his classification.

CHAPTER I.

THEORIES OF DIETETICS.

WHAT is the natural food of man ?

Each animal in a state of nature finds substances suited for its
nutrition ready to hand, and within the grasp of the instruments
he possesses for their acquisition. And these substances seem,
generally, the most proper to sustain the health and strength. So
that it has been not irrationally argued, that it would be a useful
act of scientific reasoning to infer from the structure of the human
organs what kind of food they are most fitted to appropriate, for
this would probably prove most conducive to physical well-being.

When, in pursuit of this reasoning, we come to compare man's
form with that of other mammalia, his prehensile organs his
teeth, his jaws, and his feet and his nails do not seem to fit him
for grappling with any of the difficulties which the adoption of
special kinds of food prepared by nature entails. He can neither
tear his prey conveniently, nor crack many nuts, nor grub roots,
nor graze. His digestive viscera, in middle life, are too bulky
and heavy to qualify him for the rapid movements of the car-
nivora; and they are not long enough to extract nourishment from
raw vegetables. To judge by form and structure, alone, the natu-
ral food of an adult man must be pronounced to be nothing.

On the other hand, if we read the laws of man's nature by the

2

18 GENERAL DIETETICS.

light of the general consent of the individuals of his race, which
is the wisest course, 1 we shall arrive at the opposite conclusion,
that his food is everything which any other warm-blooded animal
can use as nourishment. If we try to construct a universal diet-
ary from the records which each new traveller brings home of
what he has beheld habitually eaten, we shall find very few forms
of organic matter, capable of supporting mammalian life, which
are not appropriated by man also to his own use. By selection
and preparation he contrives to remove such parts and such quali-
ties of the substances presented by nature as are noxious to him,
and to improve such as suit his purpose ; so that as finally swal-
lowed, they are more wholesome to him than to the beasts who eat
nothing else. These lists of possible eatables are most interesting
to the student of human nature; they lead to inferences as to the
action of laws, religions, customs, and associations, in making that
abominable to one race which is most highly appreciated by
another, and they are an important part of the arguments of those
who trace political events and national character to physical causes;
but they are not suited to the present volume, which will concern
itself with the action on individual health of food generally acces-
sible in the British market. Reference may be occasionally made
to a more extended materia alimentarla, but it can contribute little
to the main arguments proposed.

The power by virtue of which man becomes so truly omnivor-
ous is habit. He can gradually, in time, accustom himself to live
on anything containing nourishment, provided he be not limited
in quantity, nor restricted in facilities for preparation. The in-
ferior animals could do the sante if they only knew how to set
about it ; for when we bring our reason to bear on their lives, we
can effect what at first sight seem most radical changes in their
nature, in respect of food ; and we can even induce and perpetu-
ate hereditary forms of body suited to the altered circumstances
we have brought about. Spallanzani found that pigeons may be
fed on flesh, and eagles on bread, by accustoming them to it ; the
domestic dog grows strong on biscuit, and often suffers in health
on being brought back to his native food ; our poultry is more

1 " Consensus omnium nationum lex naturae putancla est." Cicero de Legi-
biea, i, 8.

THEORIES OF DIETETICS. 19

robust, more fertile, and apparently happier, for being supplied
with meat, fat, or soup, and our cats have accommodated them-
selves to a mixed diet, assimilating their form to that of herbivora,
by a considerable increase in the length of their bowels over those
owned by their cousins of the mountains. The speechless creatures
have not the wits to acquire unaided these new powers; compulsory
education is necessary ; even for such a simple process as learning
to eat turnips, the lamb requires a shepherd to stand over him
and forcibly make him chew. Man's chief bodily strength de-
pends on his willingness to submit to the pain of acquiring habits,
and on his forcing his domestic stock to submit to it, for the sake
of a future advantage.

The solvent actions of the juices of the intestinal canal on food
seem to be the same in quality in all classes of animals, and to
admit of modification in the proportions of their ingredients ac-
cording to the diet adopted. Under vegetable food the saliva
becomes more copious, under meat there is more gastric juice.
The bile of a grazing ox is more watery than that of a man ; the
bile of a growing boy (who can digest any amount of meat) was
found by Gorup-Besanez 1 to contain nearly double the amount of
solid contained in that of an old woman (whose age would dispose
her to be very little carnivorous).

This shows the importance of what may be called the prepara-
tory or mechanical parts of digestion. The digestive solvents can
evidently grow equal to all emergencies of the chemical acts re-
quired of them, and the differences in the results of those acts must
mainly hang on the mechanical condition of the substances pre-
sented to them. Fortunate indeed is it that such is the case, for
the mechanical condition of the food is certainly more fully in our
power, and more easily influenced by our reason, than the chemi-
cal solvency of the secretions. We can choose, according to its
hardness, softness, and other external qualities, the sort of victual
we put in our mouths ; we can prepare it with art, can regulate
its bulk and the period of taking it; while the muscles which
chew it and swallow it are almost entirely under our direction.
But it is only very indirectly that we can influence the saliva, the
gastric and pancreatic juices, and the bile.

1 Untersuchungen iiber d. Galle, Erlangen, 1846. The relative proportions
of solid matter were 17.19 per cent, as against 9.13 per cent.

20 GENERAL DIETETICS.

Assuming, then, that man can easily accommodate himself to a
varied and mixed diet that he has, as a matter of fact, accom-
modated himself to it and that, therefore, it will in future, as in
the past, best suit his requirements the next point of interest is
the proportion which its several ingredients should bear to one
another.

Physiologists have pointed out that in the preparation made
for the infant at its entrance into life, and which is a striking in-
stance to the faithful mind of a controlling design in creation, we
have a typical instance of what the All-wise considered a suitable
dietary. Looking to its qualitative composition, we find milk
contains alimentary principles capable of separating themselves,
and, in fact, habitually separated for economical purposes, some-
what in the following proportions :

Water, 88 per cent.

Oleaginous matter (cream, butter), 3 "

Nitrogenous matter (cheese and albumen), . 4 "
Hydrocarbon (sugar), . . . . 4J "

Saline matter (phosphate of lime, chloride of

sodium, iron, etc.), "

This rough average is the best way of stating the facts for phys-
iological purposes; since, as every mother, physician, and far-
mer knows, the proportions vary considerably in different speci-
mens of even the same species of animal, and are influenced by
differences in the mode of living. The argument is, that there
or thereabouts, may be found the ratio which there should be in
our dietary, in the amounts of the alimentary substances of which
the above may be taken as representatives. That is to say, that,
supposing a man to consume 200 ounces of victual daily, the con-
tents should be about

6 quarts of water,

J a Ib. of animal matter, such as cheese, or lean meat, or eggs,

6 ozs. of fat, oil, or butter,

9 ozs. of sugar or starch,

1 oz. of salt, and some small quantity of bone or iron.

A serious flaw in this argument is that while the dietary is pre-
pared for, and truly suits very well, the newly born, we have no
evidence that either it is intended for, or would suit better than

THEORIES OF DIETETICS.

21

another, the adult. The milk of our domestic animals so closely
resembles that which supported us in infancy, that if we carried
the reasoning out to its logical consequences, we should all be
feeding together now at the same manger. If the milk represents
what the adult ought to make his diet, our bull would require
only a little more butter, and our horse only a little less than we
do; our goat would want one-third more meaty or nitrogenous
matter to be contained in the food than ourselves; and the dog
would require five times the proportion of flesh that is laid on his
master's table to be afforded him. 1 In point of fact, the life led
by the young of all animals is much the same, whereas in adult
age they differ widely in their occupations, and in the demand for
the sort of viands best adapted to those occupations.

There is greater promise of profit to the dietician in a calcula-
tion of the outgoings of matters resulting from the wear and tear
of the body, reducing these to ultimate elementary substances, and
thus ascertaining in what proportion to one another new supplies
of ultimate elementary substances are required, merely to replace
those consumed. It is obvious that the food which supplies the
demand most accurately will be the most economical in the highest
sense. "We can measure, for example, the carbon and the nitro-
gen daily thrown off in the excretions, and then lay down a rule
for the minimum quantity of those elements which the daily food
must contain to keep up the standard weight. If the diet is such
as to make it necessary to eat too much carbon in order to secure
a due amount of nitrogen, there is an obvious waste, and the di-

1 The computation of the ingredients of milk is a deduction from the fol-
lowing table of M. Boussingault's analysis:

Milk of

Water,
per cent.

Casein and
Albumen.

Butter.

Sugar of
Milk.

Salts.

Woman, . . .
Cow,

88.9
86.6

3.9
4.0

2.6
4.0

4.3

4.8

0.1
6

Ass, ....

90.3

1.9

1.0

6.4

4

Mare, ....
Goat,

90.9
84 9

3.3
6.0

1.2
4.2

4.3
4.4

0.5
5

Sheep, ....

Dos, .

86.5
77.9

4.5

15.8

4.2
5.1

6.0
4.1

0.7
1.0

22 GENERAL DIETETICS.

gestive viscera are burdened with a useless load. The same reck-
oning can be applied to the lime, sulphur, phosphorus, oxygen,
and hydrogen, which go towards building up and renewing the
tissues of the body. The dietary must contain these, or the body
must waste away by the unstayed drain of destructive assimila-
tion; and if it contains any notable excess, not only is it uneco-
nomical, but may be pernicious to the health.

Suppose, for instance, a gang of a hundred average prisoners to
excrete in the shape of breathed air, urine, and fseces, daily 71 J Ibs.
of carbon and 4J Ibs. of nitrogen, which is pretty nearly the
actual amount of those elements contained in the dried solids of
the secretions, as estimated in current physiological works. Ni-
trogen and carbon to that extent, at least, must be both supplied.
Now, if you fed them on bread and water alone, it would require
at least 380 Ibs. of bread daily to keep them alive for long; for it
takes that weight to yield the 4J Ibs. of nitrogen daily excreted.
But in 380 J Ibs. of bread there are 128| Ibs. of carbon, which is
57 Ibs. above the needful quantity of that substance. 1

If, on the other hand, you replaced the bread by a purely ani-
mal diet, you would have to find 354 Ibs. of lean meat in order
to give them the needful 71 J Ibs. of carbon ; and thus there would
be wasted 105 Ibs. of nitrogen which is contained in the meat,
over and above the 4^ Ibs. really required to prevent loss of
weight. 2

In the former case, each man would be eating about 4 Ibs. of
bread, in the latter, 3J Ibs. of meat per diem. If he ate less, he
would lose his strength. In the former case, there would be a
quantity of starch, and in the latter, a quantity of albuminous
matter, which would not be wanted for nutrition, and would
burden the system with a useless mass very liable to decompose
and become noxious.

1 Dr. Letheby's Analysis gives 8.1 per cent, of nitrogenous matter to bread
(Lectures on Food, p. 6). Of this } is nitrogen; Boussingault's analysis of
gluten giving 14.60 per cent. (Ann. de Chim. et Phys., Ixiii, 2*29). M. Payen
makes the proportion of carbon to nitrogen in bread as 30 to 1.

2 The proportion of nitrogen to carbon in albumen is as 1 to 3 (15.5 to
53.5 by Mulder's analysis, quoted in Lehrnann's Phys. Chemie, i, 343). In
red meat there is 74 per cent, of water (ditto, iii, 96).

THEORIES OF DIETETICS. 23

Now, if a mixed dietary be adopted, 200 Ibs. of bread with
56 Ibs. of meat would supply all that is required. Besides water,

200 Ibs. of bread contains . . 60 of carbon . . 2 of nitrogen.
60 " meat (including 12J
Ibs. of fat upon it), .... 12 " . . 2 "

72 4\

Judged by the above standard, it will be clearly seen that milk
does not represent a typical diet for an adult population, the ni-
trogenous matter being in considerable excess in proportion to
the carbonaceous. This is suitable to the young animal, whose
main duty consists in growing, that is in appropriating an excess
of nitrogenous matter to form an addition to the body daily, but
not to the full-grown, who has to develop force, or its equiva-
lent, heat, by the combustion of carbon, and had rather not go on
growing.

Calculations such as these, applied to the other numerous,
though less bulky constituents of the body, are invaluable. They
afford a basis for the administration of food-supply to armies, na-
vies, prisons, and other bodies of men dependent upon us ; they
enable us to detect the causes of wasteful expenditure, and to
distribute limited means in an economical fashion. They tell us
why nations which, voluntarily or involuntarily, become depen-
dent on one kind of food for subsistence can never be wealthy,
for they devour and waste their substance ; and they teach states-
men how to avoid those ruinous revolutions, which, as has been
well observed, arise more often from want of food than from want
of liberty.

But the calculations must always be open to the correction of
continuous observation and experiment. Chemical analysis is
much too young an art to be infallible, and hitherto undetected
substances and conditions are, year by year, turning up, which
modify our conclusions. And a very wide margin must be left
for unforeseen contingencies, and a discretionary power be placed
in the hands of individuals, or there is a risk lest the adminis-
trator should have to regret making too precise a reckoning. He
whose income is only just equal to his expenditure, is always on
the brink of insolvency.

The most important modification required to be made arises

24 GENERAL DIETETICS.

out of the differences of work demanded. Men may languish in
solitary prisons, invalids may lie bedridden, paupers may wait for
better times, nations may idle away existence, on a scale of food-
supply which is followed by death from starvation when work is
demanded. How shall the effect of physical exertion be reckoned ?
Here the engineers have helped us with their precise and irrefrag-
able science. Joule of Manchester analyzed, about thirty years
ago, the relation which the heat used in machinery, as a source of
power, bore to the force of motion thus made active. He found
means of proving, that raising the temperature of a pound of
\vater one degree Fahrenheit was exactly equivalent to raising
772 Ibs. to the height of a foot. And, conversely, that the fall of
772 Ibs. might be so applied as to heat a pound of Avater one de-
gree Fahrenheit. Thus, the mechanical work represented in the
lifting 772 Ibs. a foot high, or one pound 772 feet high, forms the
" dyna'mic equivalent," the measure of the possible strength, of
one degree of temperature as marked by the thermometer. Phys-
iologists seized eagerly on the opportunity which Joule's demon-
stration seemed to afford them of estimating, in actual numerals,
the relation of living bodies to the work they have to do. So
much earth, raised on an embankment, represents so much heat
developed in the machinery, living or dead, muscle or steel, gang
of laborers or steam-engine, which raised it. Both muscle and
steel come equally under the great physical laws of the universe
which the far-sighted mechanician has expounded. Now, in the
animal frame, the supply of heat, and therefore the supply of ca-
pacity ibr work, is that which is developed from latency into
energy by the chemical actions, the ceaseless round of unending
change,, which is an inseparable part of life. The amount of fully
digested food, converted through several stages into gaseous,
liquid, and solid excretory matters, produces by its chemical
changes a definite amount of heat, of which a definite amount es-
capes, and a definite amount is employed in working the involun-
tary machinery of the body, and the rest is available for conver-
sion at will into voluntary muscular action. As the mechanician
allows for the effect of friction, etc., in making his calculations, so
the physiologist allows for the action of diffusion, conduction, im-
perfect secretion, and so on, in reckoning the quantity of heat
available, and allows also for the waste of mechanical power in-

THEORIES OF DIETETICS. 25

volved in the form and structure of the limbs. To make all
these allowances necessitates courses of experiments and calcula-
tions which have taken more than a generation, and will probably
take more than another generation to complete. But the road
seems clear, and already we have gained fruitful information as
to the sort of food by which we can expect to get most work out
of men and beasts; we have found the cause of many of our
failures in distributing victuals ; and we have learned how to avoid
much cruelty and injustice that our fathers unknowingly perpe-
trated.

It may be reckoned from experimental calculations, too long to
be inserted here, that the expenditure of force in working the
machinery of the body in raising the diaphragm about fifteen
times, and contracting the heart about sixty times a minute ; in
continuously rolling the wave of the intestinal canal ; and in
various other involuntary and voluntary movements which can-
not be avoided even by a mere cumberer of the ground, without
doing anything that can be called work it may be reckoned that
the expenditure of force in doing this is equal to that which
would raise a man of ten stone 10,000 feet. But a man cannot
even pick oakum without expending more force and requiring
more to support it. A prisoner on penal diet has half as much
again.

There are several reasons for believing that in assigning their
physiological functions to the several sorts of food, we should as-
cribe nearly all the business of giving birth to force to the solid
hydrocarbons, starch and fat, by their conversion into carbonic
acid, just as we have good grounds for thinking that it is the con-
version of the solid hydrocarbon, coal, into carbonic acid, which
drives our locomotives. It is not necessary to be acquainted with
every step of the process, which, in the body, we confessedly are
not, to appreciate the argument. To the nitrogenous aliments
seems allotted the task of continuously replacing the wear and
tear of the nitrogenous tissues. Flesh food, or that which comes
near it in nitrogenous contents, after a few changes replaces the
lost flesh which has passed away in excretions ; and thus the en-
gineer takes iron ore, makes it into wrought plates or steel, and
renews the corroded boiler-plate or worn piston-rod. One of the
most cogent of these reasons is that the chief nitrogen-holding

26 GENERAL DIETETICS.

excretion, the urea, is little, if at all, increased in quantity by an
increase in the work done : whereas the excretion of carbonic
acid, in a decided manner, follows the amount of muscular exer-
tion. Now it is very clear that if the supply of power to do
work depended on the renewal by food of the nitrogenous tissues,
and on their decomposition, the urea would have no escape from
being largely augmented in quantity by muscular efforts, and di-
minished by rest. This is not the case. At first, exercise dimin-
ishes the amount of urea (Parkes), and, even when continued,
very little increases it (E. Smith, Haughton and several others
quoted in Parkes's " Hygiene," p. 383). The very small increase
which takes place during the following rest may be attributed
fairly to the extra wear of the muscles from extra motion, just as
a steam-engine is expected to require more repair than usual when
in hard use. But that amount of repair demanded is as nothing,
compared with the increase in the tonnage of coal consumed.

To give an example of the mode of working out a problem by
this theory : Dr. Frankland ascertains with the calorimeter, which
calculates the amount of heat evolved as a thermometer does its
degree, the quantity of energy or force, under the form of heat,
evolved during the complete oxidation in the laboratory of a given
weight of alimentary substance. It was explained before, that
heat and mechanical work, being convertible into one another,
bear an eternally sure proportion to one another : now, and forever,
a definite production of so much heat represents the potentiality of
so much motion, used or wasted, according to circumstances. So
that from the reading of the calorimeter may be reckoned how
many extra pounds ought to be raised a foot high by a man who
has eaten an extra pound of the food in question ; how many steps
a foot high he ought to raise himself (say a weight of ten stone)
before he has worked out the value of his victuals. Dr. Frank-
land has thus estimated the comparative value of foods as bases of
muscular exertion, and he has made out a table of the weight and
cost of various articles that would require to be consumed in the
system to enable a man of ten stone to raise himself 10,000 feet.
This is equal to going up a ladder two miles and one-third high
a stiff" day's work. Three pounds and a half of lean beef at a cost
of at least 3s. Qd. would be wanted; but if little more than half a
pound of suet, worth about 5|e thoroughly
prime by being kept alive till their constitution has grown up
to their size. To illustrate the matter by our own race, a school-
boy of six foot one never becomes hearty till he is at least one or
two and twenty. But after that, the weedy youth may harden
and be a fine man. So indeed with these overgrown lambs, if
they are kept till four years old, the meat is very choice ; but of
course the temptation is to bring them to the butcher directly they
are as tall and broad as a real sheep ; and the farmer looks upon
himself as a benefactor to his species, as having made two animals
in the time formerly required to make one. But I hear with
sorrow of attempts being made to " improve," as it is called, the
Welsh breed, and trust they may be unsuccessful. A more promis-
ing statement is that Welsh mutton, in the London market, is
imitated by a cross between the Southdown and the Scotch. 1 We
may pardon the deception, if the meat is as good as its model.

A striking proof of how opposed .are the interests of the farmer
and of the consumer in the breeding of sheep is, that in the minute
experiments and calculations of the advantage of different breeds
and various modes of feeding, no attempt is made to reckon the
goodness of the dead meat. We are told the weight, but never
the quantity of osrnazome it contains, though the readiest possible
test in the tint of the gravy is very familiar to the eater.

To get good mutton in country places is now a serious problem,
and I would suggest to my professional brethren, who are of
course permanent residents, that they cannot confer a greater boon
on families in the same position of life as most of us are, that is to
say, not rich enough to have parks and farms, and yet willing to
pay a good price for a good article I say they cannot confer a

1 Macdonald, Cattle, Sheep, and Deer, p. 483.

34 GENEKAL DIETETICS.

greater benefit on these their neighbors, than by inducing them to
join in a " mutton club," buying the lambs of a full-sized breed,
and keeping them to at least three and a half years old before
killing. The price per pound will not be less than charged by
the butcher, but it will supply an article twice as good as his.

There has been felt a good deal of alarm, more I think than is
justifiable, during the last few years on the subject of the class of
parasites which are not uncommon in the flesh of all animals,
namely, the cysticwcus and the trichina ; and which, when suffi-
ciently numerous to be conspicuous, constitute what is called
" measly meat."

The cysticercus of the pig is the sort most frequently seen, form-
ing a cyst as large as a hemp-seed. Its commonest habitat is the
tongue, on the under surface of which it may be discovered even
without cutting into the interior. You may also find the oval
holes left by it when dried up in otherwise very perfect hams,
and opaque white specks, like seeds, intimately adherent to the
muscular fibres, which are its remains dried into calcareous mat-
ter. This measle-worm of the pig has been found by the indus-
trious German naturalist Kiichenmeister to be the undeveloped
embryo of the Tcenia sotium, the tape-worm of most usual occur-
rence in Great Britain. By keeping them alive in warm milk he
was able to watch the development of the animals. The cysticer-
cus of the ox is smaller, and is either rarer or seldoraer discovered
in this country. It becomes the Tcenia mediocanellata, the species
which infests the intestines of Germans, Swiss, and others, pro-
ducing exactly the same inconveniences as that with which we are
familiar. As the measle-worm of the mouse produces the peculiar
tape-worm of the cat (Tcenia crassicollis), as the brain hydatid of
the sheep (Qxnurus cerebralis) produces the Tcenia ccenurus in the
dog, so the minute larva which infests the flesh of our prey re-
venges itself on its natural enemy. An old boa-constrictor is
always a complete museum of tape-worms, derived from the various
living game which it has devoured.

Now, there is no doubt that the boiling temperature entirely
destroys the vitality of these creatures. When cooked they can
do us no more harm than a baked lion. So that it can very rarely,
if ever, happen in civilized countries for them to be transmitted
directly to human intestines. Another mode of communication

ON THE CHOICE OP FOOD. 35

must be thought of, and I think it is not far to seek. Though we
do not eat our food raw, dogs very often do, and they distribute
far and wide by their excreta all that escapes the solution of the
gastric juice. Thus the embryos get spread abroad on the earth,
into streams and wells, and especially in our kitchen gardens
among the materials of our solids. I had once brought to me a
child three years old, with tape-worm, a very rare thing at that
age, and thus affording peculiar facilities for detecting its origin.
It was the son of a sculptor in the suburbs of London, and all the
cooking arrangements of the family seemed perfect, as also their
water supply. But in the stone-yard, which had once been a gar-
den, grew a quantity of nasturtiums, and among these the baby
used to play, and sometimes ate the flowers and fruit. As the
yard was open to the road, it was much frequented by the dogs of
the neighborhood, and showed unmistakable signs of their pres-
ence. One could not question that here lay the carrier of the little
patient's troublesome inmate. The observant and enthusiastic
physician of Iceland, Dr. Hjalteliu, also informs me that intestinal
parasites are exceedingly common in that country, and that the
cause appears to be the distribution of their ova by stray dogs who
are always in and out of the kail gardens. Another possible
source of tcenia may be shell-fish, eaten raw, and often containing
in their stomachs minute organisms derived from decayed garbage
thrown away or used as bait. Only the other day I found in the
prehensile organs of a prawn a shred of animal fibre, and saw a
man fishing for crabs and prawns at the mouth of the Arun with
a piece of paunch. With all these possible sources of infection
there is no need to suspect butcher's meat, which is never eaten
raw except by some eccentric amateur savage.

The real evil of measly meat consists in its proueness to rapid
decomposition in spite of cookery, and to that may fairly be
credited cases of illness which are reputed to have followed itH
consumption. So that it is fair enough that all that is largely
infected should be destroyed. In France there used to be ap-
pointed to the markets officers called " langueyeurs" from their
inspecting the tongues of carcasses offered for sale; but their legal
authorization, and possible tyranny, seems to have given dissatis-
faction, for M. Delpech says they have no lawful authority, but
are employed simply as a warrant between buyer and seller.

36 GENERAL DIETETICS.

They have to report to the inspector of markets, usually a skilled
veterinarian, who judges if the quantity of measle-worm is suffi-
cient to render the meat unwholesome. The shoulder and the
breast are the parts usually examined as tests. 1

The Trichina spiralis is another parasitic inhabitant of live flesh,
of a more active character and of a higher grade in creation than
that last discussed ; for instead of being a solid worm like the
ta^nia, it is possessed of an intestine. 2 It is sometimes found in
human flesh and in pork, appearing as a minute white speck, just
visible to the naked eye, which constitutes its nest, in which one
or two curled-up specimens are seen, by a microscope, in active
movement, but prevented from doing harm by the cyst in which
they are imprisoned. The danger consists in its escape and won-
derfully rapid multiplication, under special circumstances not
very clearly defined ; for it exists at most times in considerable
numbers without giving rise to any symptoms whatever. But
there seems sufficient evidence that in a few instances an epidemic
has occurred of its invasion, in overpowering quantities at once,
of human bodies, through the food eaten. The symptoms are in-
flammatory fever and local lesions from the interstitial presence of
a mass of quickly increasing foreign bodies. But these instances
have been extremely rare. A few years ago a physiologist in this
metropolis, having become the fortunate possessor of some speci-
mens of live trichina, instantly invited a crowded conversazione of
medical men and others interested in the natural history of our
species, and introduced to them by means of the hydro-oxygen
microscope his acquisition. Very few of the party, if any, had
seen one before ; and very few, if any, have seen one since.

The trichina is said to cause degeneration of the muscular fibres
in its vicinity, so that the joints infested would not present the
healthy appearance described at the beginning of this section. It
is killed by the temperature of boiling water, PO that if a dish is
fairly cooked, it must be quite safe. The cases which have oc-
curred of its proving deleterious have been where the meat has
been eaten raw, or imperfectly warmed through and served cold,

1 Delpech, Diet, encycl. des sciences med., art. " Ladrerie : " an excellent
monograph on the subject, date 18C8.

2 Professor Owen has identified the trichina as one of the Coelelminlha, and
the College of Physicians has adopted his classification.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 37

with its defects concealed by some enveloping sauce. No decently
delicate feeders need be afraid of it. If the leaden dull color of
the meat before us has been destroyed, so that it does not look raw
when the gravy is run off, and if the peculiar texture of fibre
which distinguishes uncooked meat, is removed, we may be sure
that the temperature has mounted up to that sufficient to coagu-
late albumen (150 Fahr.), and that any stray trichina would be
killed on the spot or permanently imprisoned in a solid nest.

It may be proper to mention that no form of drying, salting,
or even smoking at a low hea't, is sufficient to destroy the trichina.
So that when travelling in Germany it is wise altogether to avoid
the sausages and uncooked ham often served up in thin slices, and
which in point of fact, have been proved the sources of trichinous
poisoning in the few instances on record.

The whole influence of fevers and inflammations upon the flesh
of animals thereby affected during life, and whether they should
be considered as a reason for its being pronounced absolutely unfit
for food, is a moot-point. There is a good deal of hearsay evi-
dence on both sides, but I cannot find any crucial cases recorded
as observed by competent witnesses. 1 An enormous quantity of
meat is destroyed on this ground, for, according to Mr. Youatt's
estimate, one-fifteenth of the whole horned stock of the country
die annually of inflammatory fever, milk fever, red-water, hoove,
and diarrhoea, and one-tenth of the sheep and lambs are carried
off by corresponding ailments. 2 When we add those which perish
by accident and accidental sickness, it is obvious that several mil-
lion tons of meat are thus taken out of human mouths by the law
which insists on the destruction of all which bears the marks of
disease. Opponents say that if it possess only a fraction of the
nutritive power of good meat, it ought not to be wasted, but sold
at a lower price, provided always proof can be obtained, that it
does not, when eaten, communicate disease. This, as said before,

1 "In no well-ascertained case has it been found that any ill eftects have been
produced by eating the flesh of diseased animals, although there is abundant
evidence that at the outbreak of the distemper in Massachusetts, and before
public attention had been directed to its true character, a considerable num-
ber of animals, in which the usual premonitory symptoms had appeared, were
slaughtered and their flesh sold." Second Annual Report of the State Board
of Health, Massachusetts, 1871.

2 Youatt, Cattle, Preface.

38 GENERAL DIETETICS.

is a moot-point, but yet what is certain is to my mind quite suf-
ficient to justify the exclusiveness of the existing regulations. It
is certain that there are some diseases, originating in beasts, which
may be communicated to men handling the carcass before it has
been submitted to the action of heat, as for example pustula ma-
ligna and glanders. And some fevers, such as typhus, are com-
mon to man and beast, and are indubitably contagious during
life, and probably after death, till the flesh has passed through the
purification of fire. Now most of those who would buy diseased
meat on account of its cheapness, cook their own victuals, and are
exposed to all the evils which may accrue from handling a dan-
gerous article. Again, this "braxy" meat, as it is technically
called, runs rapidly into decomposition, and becomes a serious
nuisance on that ground alone. It is also frequently saturated
with the soluble drugs which have been given as medicines by the
veterinarian. Ergot of rye, digitalis, opium, tartar emetic, are
often administered in enormous quantities. Mr. Youatt advises
upwards of half an ounce daily of solid opium for an ox with
lock-jaw, which is 240 times the full human dose, and as this is
equally distributed to the soft parts by the circulation, in a beast
(say) of twenty stone, each pound would contain at least half a
grain of the poison. A case is recorded, in which tartar emetic
taken by an ox before slaughtering produced serious effects on 107
persons who partook of the meat. 1 One' person who died had
eaten only half a pound. Tartar emetic was found in the con-
tents of his abdomen.

Acute fevers cause an acute degeneration or interstitial death-
in-life of both blood and tissues. Virgil notices that in victims
slaughtered during the cattle plague the peristaltic vermicular
j notions of the intestines, by which the priests told fortunes, are
stayed, and that the blood is as the blood of a corpse, scarcely
staining the knife

Nee responsa potest consultus reddere vates,

Ac vix suppositi tinguntur sanguine cultri. Georg. iii, 491.

And it may be remarked that the poet, who is a practical far-
mer as well as the most picturesque of sweet singers, expressly

1 Quoted by Dr. Pavy from the Central Zeitung fur Veterinarmedizin fur
1854. Treatise on Food, etc., p. 149.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 39

says that he is here speaking of the early stage of murrain, the
fatal later symptoms of which he describes afterwards. The Re-
ports of the Cattle-plague Committee of Privy Council show, that
his lines will apply to England as well as to Italy. Now, it can
hardly be maintained that it is honest to sell in the market meat
thus saturated with natural death, though the animal has been
slaughtered before the full declaration of the fever.

The best possible meat may be rendered unwholesome by nor-
mal decomposition. The stomach can, indeed, through habit, be-
come used to food in this state ; and thus may be accounted for
the instances we read in books of travels, of savages, like the Es-
quimaux, who bury their flesh till it is putrid, or like the Zulus
with whom (according to Dr. Colenso) the synonym for heaven is
" maggoty meat." Of course, rather than die of starvation, or be
reduced to the straits suffered by Hezekiah's army, one would
acquire such a habit, and invent a sauce to make it tolerable ; but
it is scarcely worth while to do so in civilized society. Under
ordinary circumstances many cases are recorded in works upon
poisons, such as Dr. Christison's, where decayed animal food has
produced severe and even fatal diarrhoea, in spite of cookery hav-
ing concealed some of its repulsiveness. High game has fortu-
nately gone out of fashion, and the most frequent form in which
we now meet with decomposing albuminoid matter is that of a
fusty egg. Some housekeepers seem to consider this quite good
enough for made dishes, and thus spoil material worth ten times
what they save by their nasty economy. No egg should be al-
lowed to enter the kitchen, that has the slightest smell of rotten
straw. But this seems rather beyond the subject of butcher's
meat, and it is time to proceed to another department of the lar-
der. The suitability of different sorts of meat to different consti-
tutions will be considered in a future chapter.

2. POULTRY AND GAME.

Tenderness is the chief virtue in poultry, and is most difficult
to find in the winter season. Spring chickens come in with May,
but during the five previous months much care is requisite in
purchasing this article of the table. A young, and therefore
tender bird, may be known before plucking by the comparative

40 GENERAL DIETETICS.

\

largeness of the feet and the leg joints. And when a fowl ap-
pears at table with a thin neck and violet-tinted thighs, it is wise
to avoid being helped to the leg. These are invariable signs of
age and toughness.

The same violet tinge may be noticed in the thighs of old tur-
keys, which are also distinguished by their hairiness. The age of
ducks and geese may be tested by their beaks, the lower part of
which breaks away easily in youth.

Besides being tough and indigestible, an old fowl has a rank
flavor, like a close hen-house, which arises from the absorption
into its flesh of the oil furnished by nature to lubricate the feath-
ers. This is still more perceptible in old ducks and geese. It
may often be tasted some time after a meal, and must therefore,
like most rank oils, arrest digestion.

Game may roughly be selected by the same rules as poultry.
Those who have interested themselves in ornithology may also
get some help from observing the undeveloped spurs in young
gallinaceous birds, and the pointed long wing-feathers of the
young partridge, which become rounded at the tip when he is
old.

Poultry should not be too fat. In cooking, the oily adipose
tissue becomes rank, and is less digestible than the fat of mam-
malia.

3. FISH.

The sanitarian has not much advice to give concerning the
marketing of raw fish, except that it should be fresh. The guides
by which to judge of this are the fulness of the eyeballs, and the
bright pink hue of the gills. The sense of smell cannot be
trusted to, as it may be deceived by the use of ice. When cooked,
the flesh of fresh fish is firm but friable ; that which is stale is
flabby and stringy, even if preserved by cold from actual putre-
faction.

The less salt, and the colder the water is whence our fish
comes, the better adapted is it for the table. At Gibraltar it is
not hard to distinguish the mullet caught on the Atlantic side of
the rock from that which lives in the Mediterranean, a warmer
and more concentrated sea ; so much is the advantage on the side
of the former. An Icelander dining at my house passed by with

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 41

polite scorn a piece of prime Scarborough cod. Seeing my sur-
prise, he explained that no one who has tasted it at Reikiavik
could bear to eat cod in England, and that it was best in the
polar circle, braced up by the melting icebergs. The nearly
fresh waters of Loch Fyne supply the choicest herrings, and the
pure light mountain streams a better trout than our lowland
streams, where the atmospheric pressure is greater.

Every sort is best when it is cheapest, for then it is most plen-
tiful and in fullest season. It is a wise plan to contract with
your fishmonger to send you so many dishes a week at a fixed
sum, and then it becomes his interest to supply that with which
the market most abounds. For healthy persons, every kind or-
dinarily exposed for sale in England is wholesome, provided it be
good of its kind, and not spoilt in the cooking. The selection of
fish for invalids will be discussed later.

Complete cookery, however, should be insisted upon. The
conger-eel, for example, is a very foul feeder, and has been known,
if carelessly grilled, to cause diarrhoea, probably from the fetid
contents of the stomach saturating the flesh. And at the Patho-
logical Society on May 5, there was shown a specimen of the
bunch-headed tapeworm (Bothriocephalus latus) which had grown
in a person used to eat half-cooked fresh-water fish.

The only sort of reptile of dietetic importance is the turtle. It
is sometimes viewed as a mere luxury, but is in reality a most
digestible and nutritious food, and if more demanded w r ould
quickly become more plentiful in the market. The creature
grows too slowly for it ever to remunerate artificial culture, but
nature supplies it in immense quantities, and its tenacity of life
enables it to be brought over alive from the tropics. Fresh turtle
is much more costly than it ought to be, but the rival importation
of dried turtle fins is reducing the price. This last-named article
is of great value, and of moderate price ; from it, first-rate real
turtle-soup may be made at no more than the expense of mock-
turtle, if we deduct the price of the wine used, which to some
palates is no improvement. The fins should be soaked for at
least twenty -four hours before cooking.

Caviare, the roe of the sturgeon, is best obtained from a fish-
monger. The dealer in preserved provisions seems to think it all
the better for being preserved, whereas it should be as fresh as

42 GENERAL DIETETICS.

can be got, exhibiting its freshness by its softness and light color.
That black, hard sort of fish-jam which is sometimes served up,
is really unfit for human consumption.

All that has been said above, applies equally to Crustacea and
shells; but an additional remark maybe made about crabs. They
should be cleansed scrupulously before cooking, and if that which
is removed from their prehensile organs is fetid, they are hardly
to be considered safe. The frequency- with which crabs disagree
unexpectedly with a healthy stomach, may be attributed with
reason to the garbage on which the creature lives. And of oysters
it should be remembered that they are to be eaten raw, or, at
most, barely warmed through ; for complete boiling makes the
flesh tough, so that it is prudent, if they come from near river-
mouths, to keep them alive in a shallow dish of clean brine for a
day or two, feeding them with meal, and changing the water so
as to leave them bare twice a day, in imitation of the tide. They
become peculiarly plump and wholesome under this management.

4. GARDEN PRODUCE.

The commonest fault committed by housekeepers in respect of
vegetables, is that they do not supply a sufficient variety, seeming
to consider that the meat is the only part of the meal that re-
quires care, and that all the rest is mere garnish, beneath the no-
tice of a Briton, and unfit to sustain his vigorous life. Yet that
is not the experience of the observers of mankind. The attention
of Herodotus was called to the fact that the Persians, the man-
liest and most sporting nation in the old world, had at meals not
only several dishes, but several courses of vegetable food, preced-
ing a very moderate allowance of solid meat. 1 And Sir Henry
Kawlinson describes the diet of this tough race as practically the
same now, so that the assumptions of some anthropologists that
hunting races are necessarily riotous eaters of flesh, and that car-
nivoracity strengthens a nation, are not accurate. The Persian
gentleman is the spiritual father of the British squire f yet, at

1 Herodotus, Clio, cxxxiii.

2 He taught his sons "to shoot, to ride, to speak the truth," and then left
them to educate themselves ; he was devoted to his sovereign to a degree that
astonished Herodotus ; and he loved a good glass of wine in good company.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 43

many a hospitable board, if a guest does not fancy meat that day,
or lias eaten enough of it at a previous meal, he will have to fall
back upon potatoes, or to solace himself by picking a few bits out
of the sauces of made dishes, where the vegetable flavor has been
saturated with that of meat and spoilt. Usually, he goes on eat-
ing too much nitrogenous food out of sheer idleness.

Another fault is that the vegetables are not sufficiently fresh.
Unhappily dead plants do not stink early enough to disgust the
nose; but yet, every minute they are kept after their actual death,
that is to say, after they have ceased to be capable of growth,
renders them in some degree less digestible. Sometimes they are
kept too long out of mere carelessness, sometimes from lack of
sale, but sometimes also intentionally, to make them look better
at table. For a long time, I could not make out why London
asparagus so often disagreed with people, till at last I caught a
gardener cutting it twenty-four hours before it was wanted, and
putting it in a damp warm frame, "to swell," as he said. Cu-
cumbers and broccoli are often spoilt in the same way. The vast
wagons of cabbage that one sees coming into London at midnight
are often the bearers of two or three days' cutting in small gar-
dens, kept till a full load is accumulated for a single journey; as
early travellers by rail may see for themselves. Sprinkled with
water they look well, but never regain their fresh character. They
ferment in the stomach, and produce flatulence.

Potatoes. The virtues of a potato are to be mealy and pow-
dery when boiled, and to mash readily into a smooth puree. This
shows that the starch-granules are in a healthy condition, and
that they absorb water and burst the envelopes of glutinous matter
which the heat has coagulated. Young potatoes, from not so
easily breaking up, require long mastication to render them solu-
ble, and are not then very digestible. But old waxy potatoes are
worse, for they seem to unite again into a sticky mass, after being
swallowed, and remain for hours undissolved; the worst of all are
potatoes affected by the peculiar epidemic called after their name.
The diseased part, looking as if it were stained with a drop of ink,
remains quite hard in spite of any amount of boiling and digest-
ing: eating it is equivalent to eating so much rotten wood. Pota-
toes which have begun to sprout, are also indigestible, and frosted

44 GENERAL DIETETICS.

potatoes begin to decay immediately a thaw sets in. The best
potatoes are "Regents."

Jerusalem Artichokes are largely used in England by people
who have gardens, partly because the plant is handsome, and
partly because the root is not injured by frost, and so can be al-
lowed to remain in the earth during winter. The dried stem is
also convenient for firing. It is a watery vegetable, and though
it had the start of the potato in European horticulture, it has never
been brought to the same perfection. The fact is it contains no
starch, and the " inulin " which replaces that valuable aliment,
is only 2 per cent, of its weight, whereas in its successful rival there
is a proportion of 16 per cent. It should be eaten only as an oc-
casional change, for the sake of its flavor.

Turnips may have nearly the same things said of them.

Yams and sweet potatoes come now into the London market.
They are as mealy and wholesome as the commoner tuber, and
are sometimes useful to tempt our patients into the use of vegeta-
ble diet.

Carrots contain a quantity of pectin, which can be extracted
from them in the form of a jelly, and is often used by confectioners
to mix with fruit jelly as a diluent. It resides principally in the
outer rind, whose thickness therefore in proportion to the pale core
is a test of the goodness of the specimen. When soft and friable
they are much more nutritious than turnips.

Parsnips may take to themselves the same praise, and ought to
be more used, especially with boiled fish. From their sweetness
they make excellent fritters, and are liked by children, to whom
they are well adapted. However, when old and stringy, they
should be avoided.

Salsify is in England considered more a dish for the gourmet,
than as a food for middle-class tables. This is unjust, for it is
nutritious and digestible, and grows easily. It is best eaten alone,
fried in a thin coat of batter. It should break readily, and be
free from strings.

Leeks make a capital soup and a most digestible side dish. The
more white there is in them, and the less green, the softer and
better they are. They should have but little smell.

Sea-kale should be perfectly blanched. When colored it is in-

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 45

digestible, as is shown by its being tasted in the mouth after
dinner.

Asparagus should be eaten as soon as possible after cutting, and
then it is most wholesome. The greenest asparagus is that which
contains the greatest amount of the active principles, bitter and
resinous, and is therefore to be chosen in preference. I have
known timid patients to fear that it must be injurious to the kid-
neys, because of the peculiar odor communicated by it to the
urine. It certainly does no harm, and I doubt almost if it is a
diuretic.

In early spring, the fresh young fronds of the male fern make
a good imitation of early asparagus, and are decidedly better than
the wild asparagus brought to table in the south of Europe. With
other substitutes for it I have no acquaintance. The number of
them shows how well worth having the real thing is.

Cabbage is the most valuable antiscorbutic we possess. In the
slight degree of scorbutus characterized by bleeding of the gums
or by purpura, it is eminently successful, and prevents the same
thing happening to other members of the household who are wise
enough to prefer prevention to cure. It should be soft but crisp
before cooking, and show no signs of having been wetted. If it
has begun to heat from incipient fermentation, it is most noxious,
and generates in the intestinal canal an enormous amount of flatus,
consisting not only of the usual carbonic acid, but of sulphuretted
hydrogen as well. Fermentation destroys the antiscorbutic quali-
ties of the cabbage, for sour-crout is not nearly so efficacious as the
fresh plant.

Sour-crout is prepared by taking advantage of the fermentation
as a means of afteivpreservation. The leaves of the kail are al-
lowed to heat, and then subjected to severe pressure, which arrests
the chemical action, and hardens them into a dry mass, which will
keep a long time. It requires much soaking, and should not be
cooked till free from all sour taste. It should not want chewing,
or it is shown to be underdone.

The best sorts are the old white garden cabbage and the summer
cauliflower.

Winter greens are of so many sorts that it would be necc,-~;iry
to be a complete gardener to give rules for the selection of each.
Their greenness and freshness at a time when all around is brown

46 GENERAL DIETETICS.

and decaying is the attraction to them ; and it may be said gener-
ally, that therefore they ought to be as fresh and green as possible.
Under this heading I include savoys and Brussels sprouts, but
not broccoli, which should of course be as white as can be got.

I take the opportunity of having to allude to kohl-rabi (a new
kind of cabbage of which the leaf-stalks are eaten), to say that it
is not prudent to recommend to our patients novel varieties of
garden produce, unless we are well acquainted w r ith them our-
selves. We do not know how to decide if they are good of their
sort or not; and much more depends upon that than upon the kind
of vegetable.

Cardoons. Those who grow this delicious thistle, which is sel-
dom brought to market, should take care that the leaf-stalks are
at least an inch and a half thick before they are considered fit for
cutting.

The artichoke is another thistle, like the last-named, of an orna-
mental character, and more cultivated in this country. Eaten
raw, or only just warmed, as is common in France, it is as indi-
gestible as nuts, which it much resembles ; but well boiled till it
is quite soft, it may be eaten with impunity even by invalids.
After an early dinner it makes a good dish for supper.

Chestnuts are a very good substitute for potatoes with white
meat or fowl. They should be thoroughly well boiled, skinned,
and served up in a hot dry napkin. Home-grown chestnuts are
the best, being more mealy and powdery than those imported. A
sweet soup also may be made of ch' stnuts rubbed through a sieve ;
but I cannot recommend the polenta cake and bread made of this
nut, which are so popular in Italy. It requires a long education
to accustom the digestion to them.

Vegetable marrow, squash, elector's cap, and a few other sorts of
pumpkin are wholesome diluents, but do not form a substantive
diet. The same may be said of the tomato. Care should be taken
that they are ripe, or they cause colic.

Peas and broad beans should be young, and their skins tender
enough to crack in boiling. If they are past the time of life for
this to happen, they should be chopped, mashed, or otherwise
broken up; for the unbroken skins are very leathery. The longer
they are boiled, the harder they get.

Dried peas, split peas, are deprived of their skins already ; so

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 47

that if well boiled, as in soup or pudding, they are very good for
food for robust people.

It appears wasteful to throw away the outer shell of the pea. It
contains a great deal of nutritious matter, but it is not nice in the
commoner sorts. There has been lately introduced a new pea, the
shell of which is edible, and seems wholesome.

French beans, from the kidney bean and scarlet runner, are still
more required to be young and tender.

White beans are the ripe seeds of the same plants. They are
not popular in England, apparently because they do not blend
well as an adjunct to meat. But eaten alone with a piquant
sauce, they are a most palatable variety of dish, and certainly
nutritious.

Lentils, again, are too much neglected. They make a capital
soup, resembling pea soup. The peculiar flavor of lentil flour,
which is distatefnl to some persons (reminding them of garden
seeds, they say), may be masked by adding to it some sugar and
Indian corn flour or fine barley meal. Or if it is wanted for soup,
a few bits of celery or asparagus cover the objectionable taste
completely. It is sold under the name of revalenta arabica at a
higher price considerably than is charged for it as lentil flour at
a corn-dealer's.

Mushrooms are best when grown in an open meadow. When
forced they are tough and indigestible, and when preserved they
are tasteless as well. A meadow mushroom should peel easily,
and it should be of a clean pink color inside, like a baby's hand,
and have a frill or "curtain" (as botanists call it) attached to the
stalk. When the gills are brown they are growing old and dry,
and losing their nutritive qualities. The above-described agaricus
campcstris is the queen of its class for cooking purposes in Eng-
land. It is true there are several other similar fungi eatable, and
eaten by experimentalists ; but my experience of them is that their
flavor is inferior, and that we lose nothing by the safe rule of ad-
hering to the one we know well by sight.

The Gigantic Puff ball makes excellent ketchup, and can be
eaten in the shape of fritters. It must be large and very white,
like a great bleached skull. When discolored it is beginning to
ripen its spores, and is then poisonous.

The morellc, the fan-shaped chanterelle, and the black truffle

48 GENERAL DIETETICS.

should be sweet and fresh. The odor of the last-named when de-
composed is so horrible that one can hardly fancy its being toler-
ated ; yet I have known a cook use truffles in this state, and say
she thought it was the right smell.

Materials for Salad. Here again, as in the case of winter
greens, the plants used are so many and various that to enumerate
them would be as tedious as useless, and to describe their several
tests of salubrity would require more horticultural knowledge
than I possess. Repelled by the barbarous and barren aspect of
a list of their technical names, I was comforted by the recollection
of a scene of long ago. A party of young gentlemen and ladies
were earnestly disputing about the nomenclature and specific differ-
ences of certain plants, and appealed to grandpapa, an elderly
Parisian ; he settled the matter in a moment " JEh, mes chers, ce
sont des salades" I shall imitate him in condensing them into a
class.

Vegetables intended to be used for salad should all be fresh and
crisp, and sweet and clean. Their colors should be positive and
even, the reds very red, the w r hites very white, and the greens
pure as those in an autumn sunset sky, except in the full-grown
leaves, such as watercress. The salad ought to be dressed by one
of the daughters of the house, after she has herself dressed for
dinner, singing, if not with voice, with her clean cool fingers,
sharp silver knife, and wooden spoon,

" Weaving spiders, come not here;

Hence, you long-legged spinners, hence :
Beetles black, approach not near ;
Worm nor snail, do no offence."

The purity of the bowl is more important than that of Titania's
bower. So will the guests eat it with light hearts, free from all
fears of noxious ingredients.

With a little trouble, not however necessarily attended by ex-
pense, a succession may be provided of materials for salad all the
year round, so as to have one at table every day. And a great
preservative of health I believe it to be for hearty persons. The
most difficult season to provide for is the latter end of the winter,
and it may be of use to mention that the dandelion is then a friend
in need. If a pot be placed over the plant as it grows, or the

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 49

leaves tied up like lettuce, or it be transplanted into a frame, it
can be bleached, and thus loses its bitterness. Daisy leaves are
also eatable ; and thus with a sprig of tarragon, a few cold pota-
toes, and some ever-constant mustard and cress, giant cress, Aus-
tralian or curled cress, an olive or two pared thin, or some beet-
root and a slice of Madeira onion, a great variety of combinations
may be made. Indeed, an inventive lady, with a well-furnished
cruet stand, a bottle of Worcester sauce, and some moutarde de
Ma Hie, might provide a different salad every day of the year.
These "scratch" salads are very much improved by a table-
spoonful of light white wine. Watercresses rather spoil salad, and
are best eaten alone, so as to make a variety when nothing else
can be obtained. And the same may be said of radishes, and of
endive, which are too strong in flavor to combine well.

Some persons are very fond of tomatoes sliced raw, and eaten
as a salad with oil and vinegar. They appear to be quite digesti-
ble in this state, if ripe.

Celery and cucumber raw are not suitable for eating after a
heavy meal. The quantity of woody fibre in them adds an ad-
ditional load to the stomach, at a time when all its powers are
required. With bread and cheese, as a light lunch, they give an
agreeable zest, and seem to stimulate the secretion of gastric juice.
That is the time for their admirers, and they are many, to enjoy
them.

The selection of mere flavoring herbs, such as onions, garlic,
mint, tarragon, etc., is not a matter for the dietician to discuss.
He may, however, say one word in favor of temperance in their
employment. An excess makes us unpleasant to our neighbors ;
and disguising the true flavor of the meat, it leads to our putting
up with an inferior article. The object to be aimed at in their use
is to promote the secretion of digestive solvents ; and the degree
in which they attain this object may be judged by the watering of
the mouth ; a whiff of them excites the flow of saliva, a copious
dose runs it dry.

The produce of the kitchen garden, classed according to the
main objects which its use serves, may be divided as follows, the
order adopted in each class being a rough estimate of the plant's
average value as an esculent.

4

50 GENERAL DIETETICS.

1. Starchy and sugary plants. Potatoes, white and sweet,
yams, chestnuts, beans, lentils, peas, Jerusalem artichokes, carrots,
parsnips, beet-root, salsify, turnips.

2. Stimulants. Asparagus, wild onions, artichokes, strong
onions, garlic, and other substitutes, aromatic herbs and other
flavors, mustard, cress, and a few other pungent salad materials.

3. Antiscorbutics. Cabbages, tomatoes, and salad materials iu
general.

4. Diluents. Cabbages, spinach, turnip-tops, winter greens,
broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, sorrel, nettle-tops, and in
short any leaves sufficiently palatable to eat and soft to swallow,
which are green when boiled.

The use of the first class is obvious from the powers assigned to
starch and sugar by the investigations quoted in the last chapter.
Each of these vegetables is a direct food contributing to the force
of the body in health. How under certain circumstances some,
or all, become unsuitable, will be spoken of in a future part of
the volume.

The effect of stimulating vegetables is to cause an increased se-
cretion of saliva and gastric juice, thus enabling a greater quan-
tity of food to be dissolved.

Antiscorbutics seem to act by contributing some of the mate-
rials of the blood of lesser amount, though of importance to the
general vigor of the constitution. Herodotus implicitly attrib-
utes the activity and healthiness of the Persian race to the va-
riety of fruit and vegetables consumed by them. And I feel
sure that the puniness, infertility, pallor, fetid breath, and bad
teeth, which distinguish some of our town populations, is to a
great extent due to their inability to get these articles of the table
fresh. The watercress seller is one of the saviours of her country.
The consumption of lettuce with his tea is an increasing habit
worthy of all encouragement in the working man, but he must
be warned of the importance of washing the material of his meal.

The last hint is given in view of the frequency of the occur-
rence of the large " round worm " ( Ascaris lumbricoides] in the
laboring population of some agricultural counties, such as Ox-
fordshire, for example, where unwashed lettuce is often eaten at
this meal. Naturalists will not allow us to think that the crea-
ture is a lob-worm, altered by its birth in an abnormal habitat.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 51

But at all events its ova will live for years in moist earth, 1 and
may easily be brought in from the garden, which has been
manured from all sources.

Diluents contain a large proportion of woody fibre and chloro-
phyll, which are little, if at all, soluble in the secretions of the
stomach, and are not converted into sugar by the saliva, as starch
is. And they are not liable to be removed by absorption like
Avatcr, the most universal diluent. Their use would appear to be
to get mixed up witli the nitrogenous articles of food, so that the
mass may be permeated by the gastric juice and presented gradu-
ally to the absorbents. Like gelatin, though apparently not nu-
tritious themselves, they make other things nutritious. Their
benefit is made manifest by the improved action of the bowels
after their employment.

5. FRUIT.

Fruit is hardly ever eaten except because it is nice. A very
good reason no doubt, but one that rather removes the considera-
tion of the subject from the scope of the dietician.

The safest time for taking fruit is in the morning or afternoon
with stale bread and a draught of water. Thus may be made a
very wholesome and digestible lunch. The worst time is after a
heavy dinner. Adults often complain that they cannot enjoy
fruit as their girls and boys do ; the fact is they eat it at a wrong
hour of the day.

Grapes, figs, peaches, cherries, oranges, and strawberries, may
be considered to be the most digestible; plums, apples, pears, and
apricots are less so ; while melons, and other cold watery things,
are not only indigestible themselves, but prevent digestion.

In selecting oranges, especially for our patients, it is best to
take those with the greenish calyx still adhering to them ; they
are the juciest and ripest. The fewer pips, the better the orange,
or lemon, or grape.

Nuts and almonds have not justice done them by nature. They
contain an enormous proportion of a valuable nitrogenous aliment,
which in the latter exceeds half its weight, and is called " emul-

1 Davaine, quoted in Keynolds's System of Medicine, vol. iii, p. 194.

52 GENERAL DIETETICS.

sin " from its diffusibility without solution in water ; yet this is
so cut off by its natural concentration and hardness from the ac-
tion of the gastric juice, that it is scarcely digested at all, unless
chewed and cooked much more than usual. When chosen for
food, they should be used in extreme moderation, and at a time
when the stomach is at leisure, and can devote all its powers to
their solution. When pounded and employed as a flavoring, they
are innocent enough. Frying them with butter, salt, and pepper,
makes a tasty and wholesome hot dish for dessert.

Cookery, breaking up the texture of all fruit, makes it much
more easy of digestion.

The Jews, who eat much fruit, assign that habit as a reason
why their people suffered less than others from cholera, during
recent invasions of the epidemic. But it may be remarked that
they sell a good deal of fruit, as well as eat it, and may possibly
be prejudiced in favor of the trade. It can hardly be wise to
consume more fruit than usual, at a time when a chance looseness
of bowels is often the exciting cause of a fatal affection of the
system, excited by the special poison then prevalent.

6. GROCERIES AND CHANDLERY.

Recent legislation about adulteration has been directed more
against the grocer than against any other of our purveyors. The
stores he sells have all gone through a process of manufacture
which alters their natural aspect, and therefore gives great facility
to fraud. The fraud consists in mixing a cheaper substance with
a more expensive, and disguising the mixture. The disguise may
be deleterious to health, or it may not, or it may even make the
compound more wholesome, but the fraud is the same. In these
pages, however, we have to do only with those adulterations
which render the goods less fit for consumption as food.

The line will be taken of shortly pointing out the characteris-
tics of the best articles, without attempting to enumerate the
sophistications to which they might possibly be subjected, but
against which the possession of good characteristics practically
warrants them. To detect the special method by w*hich bad gro-
ceries are made bad, requires the detector to be as acute as the
rogue he is trying to expose ; and unless he makes that his sole

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 53

ambition in life, he is not likely to succeed. Money-making is a
much stronger stimulus to invention than the love of truth. If a
customer suspects adulteration, he will act wisely to place the
matter in the hands of the legally established analyst of his dis-
trict, the expense of the proceeding being now made very mod-
erate. 1

Tea. 2 The uses of tea are

1st. To give an agreeable flavor to warm water required as a
drink.

2d. To soothe the nervous system when it is in an uncomforta-
ble state from hunger, fatigue, or mental excitement.

The best tea, therefore, is that which is pleasantest to the taste
of the educated customer, and which contains most of the charac-
teristic sedative principles. The sedative principles in the leaf
consist of an essential oil which may be smelt strongest in the
finest teas, weakest in the inferior sorts, entirely absent in ficti-
tious teas and of the alkaloid them, which may be demonstrated
by heating some tea dry in a silver pot, when the salt will appear
as a white bloom on the metal. If there is any bouquet at all, or
any thein at all, in the specimen examined, it is worth something.

The shortest way to test the comparative value of different spec-
imens is to put a teaspoonful of each in one of the little china tea-
pots or cups with covers, here used as ornaments, but originally
intended for this very purpose, which has been previously made
quite hot. Shake the tea about in the hot pot a few seconds, and
then pour on, quite boiling, a small half-cup of water on each.
Cover them up quickly, and let them stand by the fire about a

1 Not less than 2s. 6^., and not more than 10s. Qd.

2 I take the opportunity of the first mention of a purely foreign product,
to say that the most interesting way of enlarging our ideas on the suhject of
food production, is to spend an afternoon now and then at a classified collec-
tion of living economic plants, such, for instance, as that at the Botanical
Gardens, Regent's Park. It is much pleasanter to think of tea as connected
with the pretty little camelia it comes from, than with blue paper packets ;
and the despised "grounds" will forever after acquire an interest in our
minds. Who would have expected pepper, and ginger, and rice, and sugar
to look as they do when growing? No consumption of midnight oil over
botanical books, gives so much real knowledge as this short hour of healthy
observation.

54 GENERAL DIETETICS.

minute. Taste them immediately without milk or sugar, and
choose that which has most aroma.

On examination of the contents of the pot after use, there will
be found in good specimens very little of the dust or broken
leaves. The said dust, in fact, consists of the sweepings of the
warehouses, which the Chinese manufacturers make up with rice-
starch into pellets, and use to adulterate the real article, under
the name of " Lie tea," -which expresses its character very well.
The hot water dissolves it again into genuine dirt.

As tea is made from more than one variety of plant and from
leaves at different periods of maturity, the shape and other char-
acteristics of the foliage are not very distinctive ; but I think, as
a general rule, that, after infusion, the best leaves are the thickest
and pulpiest in texture.

Green tea, normally, contains much more of the essential oil
than black ; but then its higher price offers a great temptation to
frauds, and if it is used, more care is needed in its selection.

Cheap black tea sometimes owes its cheapness to the admixture
of leaves damaged by damp, or which have been actually used
and redried. This is easily detected by the scent, but as there
still remains a quantity of tannin and coloring matter, people will
use it, and think they have got an article worth the price it is
sold at. However, good hay, or a bunch of wild thyme or mint,
would really afford a pleasanter and wholesomer drink. The
dried coloring matter is quite insoluble, and the tannin makes the
aliment with which it comes in contact insoluble, and indigesti-
ble also.

The chemicals used to put a " face," or agreeable aspect, on bad
tea are not poisonous, being simply so much inert dirt. They
consist of indigo, Prussian blue, whitewash, plaster of Paris, heavy
spar, and the like ; new things being substituted as the old ones
get found out. Their presence, however, shows that the tea is
more or less bad, or it would not have been faced.

The finest teas color the water the least. The finest of all, in
Europe, the yellow tea which comes overland through Russia,
obtainable at Frankfort, and well worth obtaining, communicates
only a slight tinge to the infusion. These luxuries are best en-
joyed with a slice of lemon in lieu of milk and very little sugar.

In using tea, it must be remembered that the small-leaved and

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 55

fine-grained tea packs much closer than the coarse, that conse-
quently nearly double the quantity may be contained in a spoon-
ful, and therefore fewer spoonfuls are required.

Coffee contains more of its special exhilarating alkaloid (Caffein)
than tea, but somewhat less essential oil. It should not be kept
at the boiling-point, or it loses this virtue.

The Purest way to have genuine coffee is to purchase it in the
bean, with the aromatic scent (which shows that it has been re-
cently roasted) still in it, and grind it yourself. It is easy to add
chicory if you think it improves the flavor, but as that root con-
tains no alkaloid, the beverage is weaker in quality. This is de-
sirable under certain circumstances, to be discussed in the second
and third part of the volume. A further security is to buy the
beans raw, and roast them at home over charcoal ; the trouble is
repaid by the delicious incense, which alone, among the opera-
tions of cookery, it diffuses through the house.

If you have an opportunity of getting it direct from the im-
porter, you will find the best coffee is that from Guatemala. It
is probably re-christened " Mocha " in the shops. The smallest
and roundest beans are the best. The long oval bean from the
West Indies ought to be a good deal cheaper.

Cocoa and Chocolate, " Cocoa nibs " is the most eligible form
in which the plant can be used as a mere beverage, like tea or
coffee. They are the seeds merely broken up by rough grinding.
But much of the nutriment is wasted in the thick grounds ; so
that if what is wanted is a supporting food, either these must be
well stirred up in the draught, or the extract of the seeds, "choc-
olate," must be used. This contains a large quantity of fatty
matter and may be made a meal of.

Chocolate is an article so disguised in the manufacture that it is
impossible to tell its purity or value. Indeed, the makers say it
is improved by adulteration, and cannot be sold without. The
only safeguard is to buy that which bears the name of a reputable
maker.

Sugar. The baser sort, "moist brown," always contains dirt,
sand, and mites. If it is dissolved in warm water, the heavy
dirt falls to the bottom, and the mites float on the surface, afford-
ing an interesting object for the microscope. Grocers get from
handling it psoriasis palmarum or " grocer's itch," so it can hardly

56 GENERAL DIETETICS.

be a desirable condiment to eat raw. Besides this, a clerical
friend of mine was informed by a large and religious grocer in a
manufacturing town, that he found it impossible to compete in
price with his rivals, without adulterating intentionally the whole
of his brown sugar. And he stated (not under the seal of confes-
sion) that one of the materials used for coloring, was a mineral of
a deleterious nature, but he declined to name it, as, seemingly, in
this instance, cunning has advanced ahead of detection.

The obvious moral is always to use loaf sugar or sugar candy,
the sophistication of which does not answer.

Treacle. Common treacle is the waste which drains off from
the moulds in which refined sugar is made. It contains a con-
siderable quantity of dirt, acids, extractive matter of doubtful
quality, and salts, so that it sometimes acts as a purgative.
" Golden drop " is prepared by filtering this stuff through char-
coal ; it should be clear and light in color, and is then a whole-
some article.

Grape sugar is used in England only to adulterate that from
the cane; its sale might with propriety be prohibited. But, in
Portugal, grape-juice is boiled down with quinces into a sort of
jam, the etymological ancestors of all the marmalades whose
name is derived from " marmelo" the Portuguese for a quince.
Let not the reader be beguiled by a poetical regard for grapes or
quinces into eating it. My specimen was a present direct from a
country estate in the south, and tasted like gritty molasses and
onions. . The giver informed me it was very wholesome, but used
only by servants and farm-laborers.

Raisins, Sultanas, Currants, Figs, and Dates, are the dried fruits
preserved by their own uncrystallizable sugar. The muscatel
raisins are the best, and are prepared by allowing the grape to dry
on the vine ; the inference from which is that expedients used to
hasten the process are inexpedient. The best evidence of the
goodness of these articles is their plumpness and softness, com-
bined with the absence of mites, as tested by infusion in water, in
the mode recommended for brown sugar. Mites are not known
to be poisonous, but they destroy the saccharine constituents, leav-
ing only feculent remains and exuviae, and converting the remain-
der into carbonic acid. Now, it is for their saccharine constituents
that we employ these dried fruits, both cooked and uncooked. It

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 57

may be remarked, also, that the skins are very insoluble, those of
all sorts of the grape containing a large quantity of white wax,
which in fact waterproofs the texture, and prevents its penetra-
tion by aqueous fluid. So they should always be split before
using in the kitchen. Cakes made of unsplit currants are espe-
cially to be avoided, as they are apt to produce pain and purga-
tive effects in the most healthy.

Rice should be as whole and unbroken, and as free from dust
and dirt as possible. The presence of weevils in it, constitutes a
decidedly damaged article, which ought to be returned. In the
future pages, when rice is spoken of in connection with puddings,
the Carolina is intended ; for curries, or as a vegetable with meat,
the Patna is used, since it best retains its form when steamed.
Patna rice is also the most eligible thing to eat with jam, or rhu-
barb, or roast apples, etc., for it has the least laxative action of all
cereals, and thus counteracts the inconvenient tendency in that
direction of the sweet parts of the dish.

The preparations of wheat ordinarily sold by grocers, such as
Semolina, made from hard wheat rich in gluten, Macaroni, Italian
paste, Vermicelli, made of flour from which the starch has been
partially removed, are more nutritious than the flours of the corn-
dealers ; but, at the same time, are less digestible from their being
dried up so hard. They are not suitable to be used as vegetable
dishes, for they are too nitrogenous for the purpose. But, if they
are long boiled till quite soft, they form a substantial meal. The
worst sort of macaroni is that stamped in the form of letters, for
if it be sufficiently boiled, the shape of the letters is lost, and cooks
do not like that.

These preparations are apt to get "weevilly," a state of things
usually to be detected by the smell.

Vinegar. The best vinegar is that made from the acidified
white wines of the Loire and Charente. British malt vinegar is
deficient in the oenanthic ether which gives a bouquet to the more
elegant article, is more apt to become mouldy and to breed worms,
and is more often adulterated. As to distilled wood vinegar, al-
though its fundamental composition is identical with that of wine
vinegar, yet it has not such a pleasant taste or smell as the latter,
for the destructive distillation of the wood gives rise to some em-

58 GENERAL DIETETICS.

pyreumatic products of doubtful wholesomeness, of which traces
always are to be found in the product.

There seems nothing gained by scenting and flavoring vinegars.
It prevents their being analyzed, and thus excites, perhaps, un-
merited suspicion. They smell like lotion, which is unpleasant
at dinner.

Vinegar owes its acidity to the acetic acid, which constitutes
about a twentieth of its weight in French vinegar of good quality,
and in British " proof" vinegar 4.6 per cent, of anhydrous acid.
As to other substances contained in the solution, tartrate and sul-
phate of potash, tannin, and cenanthic ether appear to improve the
flavor without in any way affecting the health of the consumer.
But it is not so with sulphuric acid, with -which bad vinegar is
adulterated. Sulphuric acid especially if cheap, impure oil of
vitriol be employed cannot be considered harmless if used in the
daily food, in the preparation of cabbage, or pickles, or salad, or
made-dishes. The more it is cooked, the more concentrated it
becomes, for the acetic acid is driven off by the heat, while the
mineral remains. The least injury it can do is to corrode the
teeth, when present in excess.

To avoid sulphuric acid entirely is, however, not possible, un-
less you make your own vinegar; and this is really worth the
trouble if your consumption is large. For the law allows the
manufacturer to introduce sulphuric acid to the extent of one part
in a thousand (in France one gramme to one litre), and the article
cannot be called adulterated if this amount is not exceeded. The
test recommended by the College of Physicians for insuring the
goodness of British vinegar used in the preparation of medicine is
a solution of 1 part of chloride of barium in 8 parts of water: of
this 10 minims will precipitate all the sulphuric acid in an ounce
of lawful vinegar. If, after this has settled down, the test solu-
tion still continues to form a cloud, the article should not be em-
ployed in the preparation of food.

Besides sulphuric acid, cheap dirty vinegar sometimes contains
lead and other metals. There was an epidemic of lead poisoning
some years ago among the apprentices of a silk-mill at St. Albans,
induced by pickled pork. This contamination is provided against
in the Pharmacopoeia, by ordering the test of sulphuretted hydro-
gen to be used.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 59

Is it worth while to test or get tested such a mere condiment as
vinegar? I think so, for it is really a most useful adjunct to the
dietary. It possesses the property of softening and finally dissolv-
ing muscular fibre, as you may see by watching its action on a
fragment under the microscope ; and, in virtue of this solvent ac-
tion, it is wisely taken with those meats whose fibres are hard,
and from their hardness insipid, such for example as boiled beef,
fresh pork, brawn, salmon, tunny, sturgeon, eels, lobsters, etc.
The resolution also of the albumen in hard-boiled eggs is assisted
by vinegar. Acids favor the conversion of cellulose into sugar,
which is the first stage of the digestion of the materials for salad
of cabbages, and other green leaves and their employment in
this class of dishes is strictly physiological. On the other hand,
to put vinegar on beans is, in the strong language of Monsieur
Cyr, "detestable;" 1 for it renders insoluble the legumin, which is
the most nutritious part of them, constituting, in fact, from a
quarter to a third of their substance. 2 Cold boiled beans are
sometimes made into a salad, and it is quite true, as M. Cyr says,
that the addition of vinegar destroys the flavor, and, probably
enough, makes it indigestible. Oil, pepper, mustard and a little
white wine, make the best dressing. Beans are a favorite food for
persons practicing disciplinary abstinence, and the hint may be of
use to them, though not appreciated by the unrestricted world.

OIL M. Cyr places olive oil as the highest in order of digesti-
bility of all fatty foods, 3 even above fresh butter. But to merit that
praise it must be thoroughly good, quite clear and transparent
and free from rancid smell. The paler it is, the better. The
white deposit sometimes seen is vegetable albumen, which ought
to have been refined out, as it prevents the oil from keeping sweet.
Lucca oil, which is the best, has a peculiar, agreeable odor, tech-
nically called " nutty." Olives gathered young and small are
called " French olives," and in this condition are the sort most
adapted, by their pleasant piquancy, for eating as a relish. But
to use in cookery they are indigestible and tasteless, and inferior
to the fruit gathered at a later period of growth, when soft and

1 Cyr, Trait6 de 1'Alimentation, p. 143.

2 In horse-beans 30.8 per cent., in Windsor beans 29.05 per cent., in hari-
cots blancs 25.5 per cent. Payen.

3 Traite de 1'Alimentation, p. 122.

60 GENERAL DIETETICS.

pulpy with incipient oiliness, and called "Spanish olives." These
last, also, are best for salads. In Portugal, they refuse to gather
them till they are just beginning to turn purple, and then they
are bitter and not so digestible ; but I am informed by a Portu-
guese country gentlemen that they might be just as good as the
highest priced French fruit, if the farmers would be persuaded to
advance upon the traditions of their grandfathers. 1

Caviare should be soft, pale in color, and exhibiting the ova of
the roe quite distinct. When old and black, and homogeneous
in texture, it is out of season and rancid, and arrests digestion.
It is wise never to eat it when you see it served carelessly with
cold, withy toast. It should be sent up in a toasted-cheese dish.

Pickles. Grocers appear to consider that the final use of pickles
is to ornament shops : so they choose them for the brilliancy of
their colors and the elegance of the arrangement of their contrasted
forms in the bottle. The consequence is that all sorts of expedi-
ents, some of them highly deleterious, are used by manufacturers
to enhance "the fatal gift of beauty." In twelve samples of
pickles taken indiscriminately and examined in behalf of the
State Board of Health of Massachusetts by Mr. Hill, last year,
ten were found to contain copper, by the simple process of dipping
in them a steel knitting-needle, which in a few hours became
coated with the metal. Nine of the samples were also examined
for alumina and found to contain it, showing that alum had been
used, probably to intensify the lake tints. (Fourth Annual Re-
port, Boston, 1873.)

Black pepper in powder is another article which the conscien-

1 I take this opportunity of alluding to the trade custom of designating
peculiar qualities or kinds of food by local names. No fraud is intended, and
any legislation which would make the transaction a fraud, would be unjust.
The words "Spanish " and " French " do not mean that the olives come from
Spain or France, but that they are of the sort made in those countries. A
large quantity of " Ostend rabbits" used to come to the London market from
near Marseilles, but an importer told me they were bred, fed, killed and
skinned like "Ostend rabbits," and therefore to all intents and purposes
" Ostend rabbits." So a wine merchant that sells his prime claret as "Cha-
teau Margaux," is committing no fraud, if his wine is as good as Chateau
Margaux, though it might be proved to have never seen that famous property.
Furriers are in the habit of calling tabby-cats' skins "Japanese lynx," and
the best "plover's eggs" are usually laid by gulls on the East coast: in
neither case is there any intention to deceive.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 61

tious grocer, lately mentioned, declared he could not sell at a profit
without increasing its bulk by artificial means. It does not, how-
ever, appear that any of the dirt introduced is, to the knowledge
of the adulterators, deleterious to health. The simple safeguard is
to buy the pepper in corn.

Red pepper when pure is entirely suspended when rubbed in
warm water. If a red deposit falls, it is generally red lead, a nox-
ious metal.

Mustard is usually adulterated by the grinders with flour and
turmeric, which are not injurious to health, so that the verifica-
tion of the drug becomes a question for the economist, not for the
dietician.

Spices, in general, should not be purchased ground. And it is
a prudent proceeding for members of our profession to take the
opportunity offered them by the liberality of the Society of Apoth-
ecaries, and lay in, at the wholesale market price, a stock of the
purest and best spices. They have, thus, test articles which they
can compare with those furnished in " our village." It will some-
times be found that the latter, even with the grocer's profit on
them, are the cheapest; and then of course they must be adulter-
ated or damaged goods.

Bacon and Ham, when properly prepared and not rusty, give
us a fat much more digestible and therefore more nutritious than
that of fresh pork. The process of salting, and still more that of
slowly drying or smoking, removes a great quantity of the water,
and coagulates the serum, which tend to make the adipose matter
readily run into rancidity. What we have to do in selection is to
see that the removal of water is carried as far as possible, and this
is accomplished by observing the loss of weight in cooking.
Primest bacon, according to Dr. Letheby, should not lose much
above a tenth in boiling; and ham wastes much less.

Sausages. After the sensational descriptions of their manufac-
ture, sent to journals by special correspondents, it may be pre-
sumed no one eats sausages, without some acquaintance with the
person who has prepared them. There is, or was, in Oxford
a large open window through which one could see a stalwart
maiden, with her arms glowing from frequent immersion iiivy in Med Chir. Transactions, xxviii, 82.

64 GENERAL DIETETICS.

had not Dr. Murchison taken up the investigation with extraordi-
nary energy and perseverance. This danger is unhappily not
capable of being warded off by science. The fatal substance
which brings typhoid fever into our bodies cannot be distinguished
from other organic matters, nor can its existence be made evident
by any chemical or microscopic observation. By its works alone,
and too late, do we know it. The only possible protection lies in
the scrupulous observation of dairy farms by sanitary inspectors,
to report on any communication between the drains and wells, and
instantly to warn the customers, if the farmers refuse, to stop the
sale of dangerous milk as human food. It would be a good plan
for the customers of any one establishment to appoint their own
inspector.

The evidence of the transmission of scarlatina by milk, is not
so conclusive as in the case of typhoid.

There are no other impurities injurious to health known to
exist in the milk of our shops : caramel, brown sugar, salt, and
carbonate of soda have been detected, 1 but not the chalk, starch,
brains, or other substances sometimes asserted to be employed as
adulterants.

Milk is sometimes rendered unwholesome in the customer's
own house, by the vessels in which it is received not having been
properly scoured out with soda. On stale milk, even in minute
quantities, there very quickly germinates a blue mould, such as is
seen often on cream cheese, and called Didium lactis. The mix-
ture of this, adhering to the corners of the can, with the fresh
milk, causes it to turn sour, and to give rise to colic and diarrhoea,
and, it is not unlikely, also to " thrush " in children, for the crust
which forms in the mouth is not a dissimilar form of mould.

The purity of the milk supply is a matter of extreme import-
ance, and fitly forms the subject of legislative interference, pro-
vided always that the legislative interference be judicious and
does not impede improvement by competition. 2 It is a subject of

1 Fourth Annual Keport of the State Board of Health, Massachusetts,
1873, p. 295.'

2 Of such injudicious sort would be, for example, the fixing an absolute
standard of crea.m contents. The standard must be low, or much genuine
milk would be condemned ; and then when any dealer got milk richer than
the standard, he would water it down to the mark, and thus the pump would
be more active than ever.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 65

pre-eminent importance to the healthy, above all others. I al-
ways feel indignant when I see advertised special milk, in sealed
cans or otherwise, for the nursery or for invalids. As if the
health of the sick and weakly were more important than that of
the strong man, on whose arm those sick and weakly depend for
existence. Let us keep our strong men well, and we shall have
fewer invalids to attend to. In choosing between two shops, I
should always prefer the one that did not advertise a special
article.

Cream, when good, is thick, clouty and yellow.

BuiteriiiUk -is one of the most wholesome summer drinks possi-
ble. It is equally refreshing and nutritious, and to see it given
to pigs instead of being distributed to the neighbors makes the
philanthropist's heart bleed.

Whey from which the curd has been removed for the purpose
of making cheese, is apt to be somewhat sour, from the rennet by
which coagulation has been effected. But even then it is a pleas-
ant summer drink, and is certainly very digestible, and rapidly
absorbed, for it is in composition more like serum sanguinis than
anything else. A grate of nutmeg makes it very palatable. In
Switzerland it is often drunk as a diet drink, and the inhabitants
have such a high opinion of its wholesomeness, that they have
founded establishments for the special purpose of receiving pa-
tients for the cure of all sorts of diseases by its means. This
" Molken-Kur," as it is called, does not however seem to suit
English constitutions, unless starvation is required to be the prin-
ciple of treatment, as is rarely the case.

Junkets and Curds are nutritious nitrogenous foods, but they
require the stomach to be educated by use for them to be well
borne in any valid quantity. Milton's mention of" the junkets"
seems to imply that they were formerly more of an ordinary diet
in farm-houses than now.

Condensed or " Siviss" milk is a device for avoiding the risk of
deterioration by shaking. Six-tenths of the water is dried out of
it, and sugar is added as a preservative. It certainly is digestible,
as is shown by the fact of infants brought up by hand upon it
growing fat, and apparently strong, a fact of which most of us
have ocular proof. Great care should be taken that only the

5

66 GENERAL DIETETICS.

softest water is used for its solution, and precautions taken against
its adulteration. As it is a recent invention it is pure enough at
present, but extensive use will probably teach ingenious methods
of sophistication.

Clotted cream is simply cream skimmed from heated milk.
Great accuracy is necessary to secure the right temperature, yet
the union of the offices of cook and dairymaid which it entails
does not insure accuracy. If the mistress of the household will
make it a few times with her own hands, she will find no difficulty
in producing a digestible article by observing the following pre-
cautions, and for very shame her example will be imitated.

Clotted cream is simply cream raised by heat, so that a little
albumen is partially coagulated along with it. Take a well-
scoured stout saucepan (a broad copper one is best) and put a tea-
cupful of quite cold water in it, then pour in the whole milk and
heat it over a very slow fire (charcoal is best) till the cream rises ;
when it does so, take care not to increase the heat, but keep it up.
It should never exceed that which the finger can easily bear
(about 150). As the clot rises, divide it down the middle with
the finger, and turn it back on itself. Keep doing this till there
is no more formed. A bain-marie and a thermometer are a re-
finement upon tins method.

Bought clotted cream is apt to make the delicacy unpopular.
It is often sour, and adulterated with sugar and flour.

Butter, like milk, is adulterated with an excess of water, which
may be detected by boiling ; the oily matter floats, and the water
underlies it. But neither in that, nor in any other detected falsi-
fication is there any source of danger to health. Even when
rancid and damaged butter is got up again in order for the market,
the processes are such as to make it fit for food, though not so
nice as when naturally sweet. The palate is a good guide ; but
sometimes in autumn and winter, when the grass is scanty, the
butter will be flavored with the dead leaves or turnips Avhich
stingy farmers will let their cattle eat, and we must not condemn
the article as unwholesome because it is nasty at these times.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 67

Cheese.

Classification of Cheeses usually in the Market.

Cream cheeses, . f Gruelthorpe.

\ Neucbatel.
f Stilton.
Double Gloucester.

Cheeses made of whole milk rich in cream, \ ,

Gorgonzola.

Cheshire.
Cheddar,
f Single Gloucester.

Cheeses made of poor or partially skimmed j Shropshire,
milk, . . . . . . . I American.

[ North Wiltshire,
/- Suffolk.

Cheeses made of skimmed milk, . . . -I Parmesan.

(. Dutch.

Cheese is required for two purposes ; one is for eating in small
quantities as a fillip to the palate, and the other is in order that it
may serve as a substantial food. For the first purpose it may be
produced in a rancid, decayed state, and is best when of a rich
buttery sort. But to be taken as a meal, to satisfy hunger, newer
cheese is better. Poor cheeses, such as the Dutch, are wholesome
and digestible if cut in very thin slices and buttered. Toasted
cheese is also digestible if it is new and lightly cooked with cream
and butter. Tough toasted cheese is about as soluble as leather.

Eggs. To choose eggs, dissolve one ounce of common salt in
half a pint of water, that is, ten fluid ounces measured with a
medicine measure glass. In brine of this strength a good egg will
sink, a bad egg will float. If held up to a candle a fresh egg will be
found to be more transparent than a stale one, or than one with
a chicken in it. Fresh eggs are most transparent in the centre,
stales ones at the end.

If absolutely necessary, eggs may be preserved some time by
rubbing them well with fresh grease when taken warm from the
hen-house. But if they acquire a smell of old straw they are unfit
for food. Lime gives them a peculiar taste, and prevents the
albumen setting.

Rennet. Rennet is not always to be obtained good in the coun-
try. It may be thus prepared for domestic use in making whey,
junkets, etc. Take a calf's " bag " with the curd in it (that is the

68 GENERAL DIETETICS.

fourth stomach, or abomasus, 1 filled with acid chyle), pick out all
the hairs, and wash bag and curd clean. Then, replace the curd
in the bag with six or seven ounces of salt, and set them by for a
week in a cool dairy. Then, take a strong brine, made of a quart
of water to a pound of salt, and pour it cold on the rennet. When
it has stood again for a w r eek, the liquor is fit for use.

8. BREAD STUFFS.

There is no bread so digestible as that made by an honest, ex-
perienced baker. In baking at home you secure the honesty, but
you lack the experience. The chance has to be taken of a bad
batch through some accident ; and then the best must be ma^le of
it till it is finished.

If one had to live on bread alone, brown bread would perhaps
be preferable, for (as Professor Liebig taught us) it contains in the
bran and pollards, which are returned to it after grinding to make it
brown, a considerable quantity of phosphate of lime, valuable as
nutriment to the bones and other tissues. But the fact is, most of
us take in other ways plenty of phosphates in a more digestible
form than bran, and the irritating eifect which it has on the bowels
shows that it is not, in this form, made much use of by them
as a nutriment. White bread is generally chosen in preference by
shrewd working men who wish to make the money spent on food
go as far as it can. It is also far less likely to be withy and
tough, and is less often adulterated.

Not but that some admixture of the bran is pleasant, both to
the eye and to the palate, as in the flour which is called " seconds,"
which makes a very good bread, probably in consequence of this
flour not being over-ground. Too much friction ruptures the
starch-granules, and the dough does not rise well.

Bread should be evenly porous without any large holes, like a
fine sponge. The texture should be firm, of which virtue the best
test is the being able to cut it up into thin bread and butter.
Tough, clammy new bread becomes wadded together into an in-
soluble mass by chewing, is not penetrated by the saliva or gastric
j uice, ferments anew, and even in strong persons is apt to produce

1 It is figured in a volume previously referred to, Dalton's Human Physi-
ology, p. 105.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 69

a disagreeable form of heartburn. If from necessity it must be
eaten, heating and copious buttering, as we heat rolls or crumpets,
is the best expedient to make it as digestible as circumstances
admit.

A considerable portion of water quickly evaporates from hot
bread, causing of course a loss of weight, so that bakers will some-
times try to prevent it by covering up the loaves from the air. The
crust is thereby rendered withy, and the crumb is wet and tough,
besides which you are buying water at the price of bread.

There is another and more objectionable way in which the loaf
is forced to hold water in excess, that is, the addition of boiled
rice-flour. It is a sticky gummy paste, which renders the dough
more adhesive, and prevents evaporation. So that 21 quartern
loaves are made with what ought to make only 20. They may
be found out by their sodden bottoms, the water gravitating by
standing. To shirk this test, bakers will turn them upside down
on the shelves, which always looks suspicious.

I am told by a retailer of glue that bakers buy a good deal of
that substance, and the inference is that it is used in the same way
to make the dough adhesive.

It is said, also, that alum is added for the same fraudulent pur-
pose, even to good flour. But its object, generally, is to make a
damaged article bear a good white color, and stop the excess of
fermentation to which it is liable. Alum is easily detected in the
laboratory by incinerating the bread suspected to contain it, and
our analysts are active in this direction. However, they must
guard against being too pedantic, and a distinct line must be
drawn between a baker who habitually uses a great quantity of
adulterant to dispose of flour which he has wilfully bought in a
bad state, and one who now and then rectifies an accidental loss
of goodness by the employment of the drug. But certainly, the
less aluni he uses, the more he is to be trusted.

The best bread grows stale the slowest. "Aerated bread,"
where the dough is raised according to Dauglish's patent, by
forcing pure carbonic acid into it, keeps better than any. It is
free from the objectionable presence of the remains of the yeast,
not to be avoided otherwise, and is more certain to be wholesome
than ordinary bread. It is popular, too, at that test of palatable
simplicity, the nursery tea-table.

70 GENERAL DIETETICS.

Yeast is a great difficulty with those who bake at home.
Brewer's barm is the best, but it is apt to go dead between one
baking and another, and is not easy to be got. Country trades-
men object to sell it, but many retail bakers in London will en-
gage to send regularly by post an ounce or two of "German yeast,"
which thus arrives quite fresh and active. An orderly cook can
keep a ferment in constant action by starting it with some " Ger-
man yeast " from the regular manufacturers of that article, and
feeding the mixture, placed in a cool situation, with some fresh
malt and mashed potato or dough, daily.

An acquaintance with the theory of fermentation as explained
in all books of physiology, and recently made doubly instructive
by the researches of M. Pesteur, will enable an educated person
to point out the remedy for all difficulties encountered in the
kitchen. There is no more favorable subject for interesting un-
lettered minds in nature's wonders. I have seen a country con-
gregation quite breathlessly attentive to an account from the pulpit
of the recent addition to our knowledge on this head ; and I am
sure that when their dough has risen well, they have remembered
the moral impressed upon them.

Biscuits are too hard for ordinary consumption as a bread-stuff,
if made from flour and water only, as " captains " and " ship bis-
cuits" are. They are very useful, however, to travellers, in rea-
diness for those frequent occasions on which the bread is tough,
sour, bitter, or otherwise uneatable. They bear well exposure
and rough treatment, and if soaked for a few hours in water or

O /

milk, they take up several times their own weight of fluid, soften
and swell, and with a little cream and sugar make a dainty dish
of eminent digestibility. Biscuit powder for infants should be
made from this kind.

Fancy biscuits are too numerous to describe, and of various
merits. The addition of milk, sugar, eggs, flavors, etc., makes
them less digestible than the plainer sort. Those made on a large
scale by special manufacturers are the best, because in them the
partial raising of the dough is effected by piain carbonic acid, in-
stead of carbonate of ammonia.

When biscuits become damaged, they are often damped and
heated anew in the oven. They quickly lose the artificial new-
ness thus acquired, and grow stale and musty. So they are safest

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 71

purchased in tins, where they are not so likely to be tampered
with,

Oatmeal. The coarsely-ground Scotch oatmeal is the most
suitable both for porridge and cakes. If imperfectly boiled, as
when prepared in a hurry, or intentionally unboiled as in ,brose,
it is extremely indigestible, and produces the most obstinate cases
of pyrosis in the parts of the country where it is habitually used.
But when well boiled, and eaten slowly so as to become well
mixed with saliva, it is a most wholesome as well as most nutri-
tious food. An oaten diet has bred the Scotch farmer and the
English horse, and where will their equals be found ?

Emden grits are the best adapted form of oats for gruel.

Barley and rye do not appear to possess any distinctive virtues
which can give them an interest in the eyes of a medical man.
Though useful when other cereals are not to be got, they are in-
ferior to them in solubility and nutritive power, and, at the, same
time, have not the attractive taste which would cause them to be
a temptation against which a warning is necessary.

Maize .in various forms is often recommended as a valuable
food. It contains a good deal of fattening matter, and on that ac-
count is used for fattening geese at Strasbourg, and other domestic
animals elsewhere. But its oleaginous constituents incline it
readily to grow rancid, when it has a fusty disagreeable smell.
When stale, therefore, it is apt to disagree, and in horses often
causes a sort of eczema of the skin. To our race, damaged maize,
persisted in as a food, is still more deleterious, producing, for ex-
ample, in Lombardy and the Valtelina, a special endemic cuta-
neous disease Pellagra which is year by year slowly widening
its fatal shadow over the finest lands tilled by man. 1

Maize flour may be refined and made safer by washing out the
nutritive portion with alkalies, and in this state professes to con-
stitute " oswego," "maizena," "corn-flour," etc. But the eater
should understand that he has before him starch only, and must

1 The IVllagra is the punishment of sin. The farmers, cultivating their
lands on the metayer system, the landlord and tenant dividing the crop, are
tempted to hide some of the grain in holes and corners, where it gets mouldy.
They find it makes their fowls ill, so they eat it themselves. See Lombroso.
Sulla Pellagra, where figures are given of the peculiar mould to which the
author attributes this very serious plague.

72 GENERAL DIETETICS.

not reckon on it for nitrogenous nutriment. The economist will
probably think he can buy starch cheaper in the form of rice flour,
which, indeed, is often sold under these fancy names, according to
the evidence of Dr. Bartlet before the Adulteration Committee
this summer.

Other forms of Starch commonly sold.

Arrowroot (West Indian best).

Cassava meal.

Potato starch (uncolored).

Sago (unbleached best).

Sago meal.

Salep.

Tacca starch, or " Otaheite Arrowroot."

Tapioca.

Tapioca meal, or " Brazilian Arrowroot."

Tous-les-mois (West Indian).

The only preference that can be given to one of these over the
other depends upon its flavor. All are equally wholesome, and
equally suitable for the occasions when a physician wishes to ad-
minister starch without admixture.

9. ALCOHOLIC DRINKS.

Wine. This is a subject terribly overladen with literature, his-
torical, poetical, industrial, scientific, and occasionally nonsensical.
So that a simple purchaser who wants to know how to get a good
wholesome glass of wine, has no small difficulty in winnowing
out the required information from so much chaff.

The first thing a householder should think of befbre he stocks
his cellar, is what he wants the wine for. Is it to take as a
regular beverage, or on festive occasions only? Does he intend
to employ it for himself or others as a medicine, or to drink it
only because it is nice ? Here are the four chief uses of wine, and
different wines are suitable for each.

As a regular beverage for a healthy person there is no wine in
the English market equal to claret. The intelligence and perse-
verance of the Bordelais vintager, improving yearly on the tradi-
tional experience of centuries, does the best that can be done for a
very good grape. Nothing can be more perfectly made than the

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 73

greater part of the low-priced Bordeaux wine, now brought over
direct from the Gironde.

Everybody distinguishes in the grape three parts, viz., the
pulp, the stones, the skin. It is on the forms and degrees of
pressure exerted to extract the juice, that the presence of these
several parts in different proportions in the wine depends. In the
pulp is the syrup, which ferments into alcohol, the amount of*
wltich constitutes the value of the wine. So as much of that as
possible is got out. In the stones are essential oils, which in deli-
cately graduated moderation are wanted to contribute to the for-
mation of vinous ethers as a " bouquet." In the skin and stalks
is tannin, necessary to give astringency and preserve the liquid
from mouldiness ; and there are also coloring matter and extrac-
tive, which contribute a distinctive hue, a thickness or " body,"
and fruitiness. There are, too, in the juice, tartaric acid and its
salts in considerable quantity, and citrates and malates in smaller
amount ; these are rather necessary evils than desirable ingredients,
and the owner is glad to see his must deposit the greater part of
them in the "tartar" a product of the vintage for which he ex-
pressed his dislike by the bad name he gave it in the old days of
strong language. 1 There is also some nitrogenous matter, which
in undergoing chemical changes acts as a ferment, and having done
its work, ought to disappear, lest it should re-establish fermentation
when not required. Now, the perfection of claret, above all other
wines, consists in the manufacture being so conducted that each of
these elementary constituents of the grape is expressed in exactly
the proportion most conducive to the wholesomeness of an alco-
holic beverage.

If any of the above-named ingredients, or their products, ex-
hibit themselves conspicuously in the perfected liquor, a peculiar
character is given to it, which causes it to be sought out for real
or supposed advantages, or avoided for real or supposed evils.
We can, thus, classify wines as they appear in the market, in the
following groups :

1. Strong dry wines. In these the syrup of the must has been

1 Sal Tartari = "hell-salt;" Cremor Tariarl = "hell-scum," cream of
tartar. The history of the word is not known, but Paracelsus found it in use
in his day.

74 GENERAL DIETETICS.

in large proportion, and has fermented thoroughly into a large
proportion of alcohol.

2. Strong sweet wines, Here the sugar has either existed natur-
ally in such excess, or, more commonly, has been added in such
excess, as to stop fermentation and remain sweet.

3. Aromatic wines, whose chief feature is a delicate diffusible
odor comparable to that of flowers, and thence termed "bouquet."
This depends on the union of sundry essential oils with the alto-
hoi in a nascent state, by which renanthic and other volatile ethers
are produced.

4. Acid wines, whence the natural acid cannot be eliminated
without destroying the flavor. The acid in them is mostly tar-
taric, and not acetic, as in wines that have turned sour.^

5. Sparkling wines. Here the ferment is not allowed entirely
to exhaust itself before bottling, so that it goes on slowly under
severe pressure, and saturates the wine with carbonic acid, at the
same time giving birth to flavors which would not otherwise be
produced, and to very exhilarating ethers, without much alcohol.

6. Perfect wines, where as many of the above qualities as pos-
sible are combined without interfering with one another.

7. Rough wines, in which the astringent tannin is predominant.
1. Strong dry wines are well represented by sherry, which is the

strongest and driest of all ; and it is ably supported by Port,
Madeira, Marsala, Johannisberg, and a few (very few) others of
the products of Northern grapes. These all contain too much
alcohol to drink dietetically ; much diluent must be taken at the
same time to make them wholesome. But for festive use, to take
a glass thereof to promote conversation and good fellowship, they
are excellent. And, except Marsala, they are well qualified for
that post by agreeable flavor.

Constant use of strong wines induces a congested and insensi-
tive state of the gastric mucous membrane, which prevents its
glands from secreting freely, and, by reflex action, affects also the
salivary glands ; these liquors are absorbed slowly, and what
sugar remains in them, and much of the alcohol also, becomes
converted into acetic acid, which fermentation further causes the
oleaginous ingredients in the food to become rancid. Thus is
generated " acidity " of stomach, or the presence of an undue
amount of nascent acids. A gouty constitution is often thus in-

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 75

augnrated in a previously healthy person, and, what is worse, is
capable of being transmitted as an heirloom, just as acquired pecu-
liarities are handed down to their descendants by domestic ani-
mals.

2. Strong sweet wines are represented in England by Malaga,
Alicante, Constantia, Tent, Tokay, Paxarete, Malmsey, the ex-
ported Lacryma Christi, 1 Frontignan, Lunel. They are fit to
drink only in small quantities, and are best appreciated, with a
plain biscuit, when the stomach is not full. Thus taken they are
a wholesome substitute for tea.

In order to enhance their flavor and bouquet, the naturally dry
vintages are often, either during the manufacture or afterwards,
made sweet. The most usual and least objectionable process is
checking the fermentation by the addition of boiled grape-juice,
and the result of this is an indubitably less wholesome article.
By long cellaring the sweetness slowly disappears, and the fine
flavor remains ; but there is much risk of decomposition, which
has to be guarded against by adding an excess of alcohol. Almost
all the port now to be had is an artificial wine of this sort. The
port drunk by our grandfathers, and up to 1820, was a dry, well-
balanced wine, capable of being kept without brandy and without
damage for several generations. I have, in Portugal, tasted some
perfectly sound, which had been in a private cellar upwards of
seventy years. But the summer of 1820 was an extraordinary
one, and produced, in the Peninsula, a vintage such as had never
been seen before, and the wine, by a preternatural richness of
flavor secured a fatal popularity. Since then, the sole ambition
of the Oporto merchant is to imitate 1820. He has more or less
succeeded, but at the expense of British digestions.

3. Aromatic ivines. Several of the before-mentioned have a
fine bouquet, but what are intended here are such as are chosen
for their aroma almost entirely.

Moselle, the choicer Rhine wines, first quality Chablis, Chateau
Yqucm, several Italian wines (such as Orvieto, Monte Pulciano,
Capri, d'Asti), Champagne, are of this description. They bear
carriage badly, and have to be prepared for the voyage by artifi-

1 Tlnit used for home consumption is a badly made wine which will not
keep till it is ripe. The choicest Lacryma goes to Augsburg.

76 GENERAL DIETETICS.

cial additions. So that, while wholesome in their native land,
they are apt to be much the contrary as found here, and besides
have often lost their aroma unless they are brandied.

4. Acid wines must be in justice carefully distinguished from
wines which have turned sour. The acid of the latter is nascent
vinegar, whose presence indicates the probability of other more
noxious acompaniments of decomposition being also in the dam-
aged liquid, such as poisonous moulds and fungi, for example ;
but some wines are really made with an excess of acid, consisting
mainly of the tartaric and its supersalts. This happens mostly
to the growths of cold countries, such as the Rhine districts, and
the environs of Paris. White Burgundy wines (of which Chablis
is the best known) and white Bordeaux wines (Sauterne), unless in
exceptional years, are more noted for their acid than for their
aroma. They are best adapted for taking with rich, greasy
dishes, and suit well the dietary of the luxurious districts where
they are grown. They are an agreeable adjunct to the usual in-
gredients of salad dressing.

5. Sparkling wines. Champagne, St. Peray (from the Rhone),
Seyssel (or "Swiss Champagne"), Sparkling Moselle, Vino d'Asti,
are the best known. Good champagne is by far the wholesomest,
and with a minimum of alcohol, possesses remarkable exhilarating
power, from the rapid absorption of its vinous ether diffused by
the liberated carbonic acid. Sillcry mousseux contains, according
to M. Cyr's table, only from 9 to 1 1 per cent, of absolute alcohol,
but to a sinking fever patient, a glass will give twice the energy
that can be obtained from a glass of brandy. The other efferves-
cing wines will be drunk only by those who are reckless or igno-
rant of consequences.

The test of a sparkling wine is to leave it uncorked. If it be
vapid after twenty-four hours, it is bad, and it is good in direct
ratio to the length of time it retains its sparkle and aroma. That
which roughens the teeth should never be again tasted ; it is made
of cider and rhubarb stalks; the roughness is from the malic acid
it contains.

All these five classes of wine prudence will reserve for festive
purposes and occasions; the wise man who wishes to enjoy life,
will make them always exceptional, for as idlers have no holidays,
so perpetual feasters miss all the pleasures of variety ; but I am

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 77

quite sure that the not infrequent manufacture of occasions for
domestic rejoicing, a birthday, a wedding anniversary, a harvest
home, a horse sold, the planting of a tree, the calving of a cow, a
daughter presented at court, or cutting her first tooth, or any
other good stroke -of business, is a great promoter, not only of love
and happiness, but of personal health. Let the beverages which
celebrate the occasion be chosen for their peculiar and exceptional
flavors. If they are good of their class, the moderate use will
not shorten, but both cheer and lengthen life.

6. Perfect wines. By this term are intended such as possess the
virtues derived from the presence of alcohol, of water, of sugar,
of ethereal flavors, of fruity extractive, and of acids, without any
of them being so predominant as to mask the others, or to require
artificial additions for the preservation of soundness and flavor.
An enormous acreage is devoted to the production of red wines of
this character in the department of the Gironde and other places
in France of similar climate. We give the nanle of " claret " to
the whole of them, which is better than pedantically endeavoring
to affix geographical distinctions. One of the merchant-princes
of Bordeaux, a statesman of the highest integrity, gave me some
years ago a hint which I have found of the greatest service in
the diagnosis of wine-dealers. " When," said he, " a tradesman
offers you, at anything but the very highest price, our wines with
the name of an estate attached to them, he is giving currency to a
deception. If he uses the terms of First, Second, and Third
Quality clarets, it is so-far-forth an evidence of honesty." The
wholesale houses and brokers buy up from farmers, many of
whom do not make half-a-dozen hogsheads a year, all but the
small quantity which is kept to store as "vintage" wines, vins de
luxe, and indeed much that is quite equal in quality to these
speculative articles. The produce is mixed under the superin-
tendence of cellarers, who at Bordeaux form a sort of hereditary
caste, handing down their secrets from father to son, and adding
fresh knowledge

"Till old experience doth attain
*To something of prophetic strain."

The mixed wine is classed as premiere, secondc, and troisieme
qualite, not from any comparative superiority in wholesomeness,

78 GENERAL DIETETICS.

but according to the price it will fetch in the market. Thus, a
much better general result is secured than if it were kept separate,
as is to a considerable extent done on the Rhine.

If an exporter wishes to pass off some of this blended liquid as
the production of some special vineyard, he accomplishes his ob-
ject very often by adding an artificial scent. If he wants to sell
(say) Chateau-Latour, he uses nuts or almonds, or something
which smells like them ; if his ambition leads him to aim at
Clmteau-Lafitte, he adds a whiff of violets also; if Leoville be his
object, violet alone is probably enough. Others seem flavored
with cherries. When the wine is originally good, it is not likely
that its wholesomeness can be seriously interfered with by this
fraud.

But the same cannot be said when imperfect wines, not tempered
by admixture, or damaged wines, are cured and fortified for ex-
port with flavors, and body, and alcohol. The fault of the two
former is not so much that they are actively deleterious, which is
not known to be the case, 1 as that they hide the nauseousness of
an unwholesome article ; and the same might be asserted of the
alcohol, if it were inserted in the form of ripe French brandy, but
the price of that would diminish the profits too much, and new
corn or potato spirit, full of the poisonous oil of grain (amylic
ether), is used.

Against the adulteration of claret which does not pretend to be
anything else than " first," " second," or " third " quality, we have

1 The substances sold by adulterators and druggists for flavoring alcoholic
liquors are, according to Dr. Hassall, cocculus indicus, grains of paradise,
capsicum, ginger, quassia, wormwood, orris root, carraway and coriander
seeds, orange powder, liquorice, honey, sulphuric acid, cream of tartar, alum,
carbonate of potash, hartshorn shavings, nux vomica, gentian, chamomilo,
tobacco, opium, juniper berries, angelica root, and bitter almonds. The quan-
tities used of the active drugs are infinitesimally small, and would be nauseous
if employed in noxious doses. In a trade circular headed " Important Infor-
mation for Practical Men," Eichler's Keceipts for Liquors teaches how to use
also " tincture of green tea," "raisins," "figs," "St. John's bread," " rhat-
any," "catechu," "elderberry, cherry and huckleberry juice," "brown
sugar," "yeast " and so far we know what we are about. But as much can-
not be asserted when we take in hand a mysterious " wine coloring," and still
less when the ill-omened name of " body preparation " is given to one of the
drugs recommended. (See Keport of State Board of Health of Massachusetts,
1873, p. 167).

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 79

the valuable safeguard of the enormous quantity that is made, and
the small profits which could be got out of the labor and risk of
adulterating it.

The commoner Burgundies and the red Rhone wines run our
claret very hard in the race for perfection ; they err in containing
too much fruity extractive, which, except the wine happens to be
very strong in alcohol, causes decomposition. They do not keep
well, and must be drunk off directly they are ripe, or they become
unwholesome; but it is only just to say that they are much im-
proved lately, and there seems little doubt that the scientific ad-
vice of M. Pasteur and others is calculated to improve them still
further. The cause of un \vholesomeness in Burgundy is usually
the re-establishment of fermentation, through the formation of
mouldiness in the bottle. To detect the presence of this de-
structive action, cork lightly down about two-thirds of a bottle of
the wine, shake it well for half a minute or so, and let it stand :
if there is any carbonic acid set free, so as to expel the cork too
readily, the Burgundy is unwholesome, and it will, if drunk daily,
produce feverishness, tension of the eyeballs, throbbing of the
arteries, dry furred tongue, and indigestion.

The grand, old-fashioned vintage Burgundies, such as Cham-
bertin, Clos Vougeot, etc., do not produce these effects, as they
are sufficiently alcoholized not to decompose ; but their price and
their strength fit them only for holidays. They should be treated
like port, and taken in a single glass with some exceptionally
prime dish, such as venison or a saddle of four-year-old mutton.
The primest Burgundies are those which have a peculiar odor of
wall-flowers.

Beaujolais was introduced a few years ago from the Macon
market by means of some choice specimens, but it has not sus-
tained its first reputation. It is apt to turn sour, and at the best
has very little bouquet.

The Hungarian wines have been lately widely advertised as
superior to claret. Some of them have certainly pleasant fruity
flavors, but they do not ripen well in the cellar, and are liable
to decomposition. They are inferior to the produce of French
vineyards at the same price.

7. Rough wines owe their character to the relatively large pro-
portion of tannin which they contain. They have usually a bril-

80 GENERAL DIETETICS.

liant tint, but are deficient in alcohol ; and their principal use in
the trade is to mix with others to impart color and keeping qual-
ities. The Vin de Cahors and Roussillon come under this cate-
gory ; the latter, being stronger in alcohol than the majority of
rough wines, appears in the markets in its own name ; at the mer-
chants', and in public houses, as "Burgundy Port." In M. Cyr's
table it is stated to contain 16.68 per cent, of absolute alcohol, as
against 17.63 per cent, assigned to sherry, and 20 per cent, to
port. The ordinary drink of the population in wine countries
usually consists of these rough beverages; but, however beneficial
they might be, which is questionable, it would be useless to recom-
mend them to those who can procure something more palatable.

Beer. The only thing to be guarded against in malt liquors is
sourness, which needs no comment.

Spirits. This is, in every respect, the worst form in which al-
cohol can be habitually consumed. To continue to produce the
desired effect it is necessary to continuously increase the strength
or the frequency of the dose. Almost all the cases in which in-
jury to physical health has been traced to alcohol, are in reality
due to spirit-drinking.

Distilled liquors are by no means to be considered as merely
dilutions of their chief ingredient. The products of recent distil-
lation are always deeply saturated with the poisonous amylic
ether, which the manufacturers call "oil of grain" or "fusel oil."
It is not an adulteration, for gladly would the distillers get rid of
it, and would pay largely anybody able to teach them how to do
so quickly and cheaply. But it is much more injurious to health
than any possible adulteration. I had once an idea that this
waste product might be made of economical use, as a medicine or
otherwise, and gave it to a considerable number of persons in
doses of from one to ten drops. The consequences were invaria-
bly feverishness and furred-tongue, and often headache and throb-
bing of the temples.

After cellaring for a year or so, a great part of this poisonous
ingredient disappears by decomposition, leaving only peculiar
flavors. And a quicker mode of producing the same effect is to
let the spirit drip slowly through the air, at the cost, of course, of
much loss by evaporation. But new, unmellowed spirit must be

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 81

absolutely prohibited even from occasional or medicinal use in the
dietary.

If "fusel oil" cannot be detected by its peculiar, but not easily
described, odor, it may usually be made evident by pouring some
boiling water on the spirits or wine, and letting the mixture stand
in a small room, or close cupboard, for the night. It is then dif-
fused through the air. It may also be discerned in the breath of
the consumer. Chemists have not helped us to any quantitative
analysis of this obnoxious substance.

10. WATERS.

It is only exceptionally fortunate people that have a chance of
choosing what water they are supplied with. Still, it is of prac-
tical use to know what are the good and the bad features of each
sort; especially the bad, in order that, if they are exhibited, the

source may be avoided altogether, or the dangers provided against.

Distilled water, as it is condensed from steam, is the ideal of per-
fect purity. It has not even air in it, and therefore tastes flat and
metallic. But it makes capital tea, beer, or any other infusion or
decoction.

The principal bad feature it can exhibit is derived from its very
purity. From the absence of salt, it dissolves and takes up in so-
lution any lead it may come across. So that in ships, or any other
places supplied by condensing engines, frequent analysis of the
water with sulphuretted hydrogen should be made, lest it should
be poisoned by the pipes or cisterns.

Rain water may be, and often is, equally pure. It is, in fact,
as it falls, steam condensed in the great condensing apparatus of
the sky. But it is better aerated than distilled water. For cu-
linary purposes, for washing, and the like, it is well adapted.
But it is apt to pick up dirt on the surfaces where it is collected,
and being, like the last, free from salts, also is readily infected by
lead.

River water is principally rain-water which has been filtered by
passing through the surface soil. A new risk, here, has to be
guarded against, namely, that of contamination by refuse organic
matter in a state of decay, but not yet sufficiently oxidized into
harmlessness. The latter object is naturally secured by the mo-

6

82 GENERAL DIETETICS.

tion and aeration of a flowing stream, and the greater part of the
resultant dirt falls to the bottom, while the chloride of sodium
and other salts make the water actually more agreeable and diges-
tible. A purified river is the best drinking-water one can have,
but unhappily it is not yet quite evident what length of exposure
is necessary to secure its purification, and there is the uncomforta-
ble feeling that any organic matter may possibly be of a highly
poisonous sort. Water from this source should not be drunk un-
less it be quite free from taste and smell, either naturally or after
filtration ; or unless we can trace to an obviously harmless source
any taste or smell we find in it. By "harmless" I mean such an
impurity as peat, derived from superficial layers of that substance.
This is not only harmless, but positively a security, showing that
the water has passed through one of the best natural filters in the
world ; and a slight tinge of it is by no means unpleasant.

AVater containing sewage to any appreciable extent gives off a
fetid smell just before the boiling temperature, and may be easily
detected in this way. The boiling temperature renders it safe from
germs capable of communicating infectious disease, but it does not
make it clean or wholesome.

The readiest test of the presence of unoxidized organic matter,
is to put a drop of " Condy's patent ozonized water for toilet pur-
poses " in a tumbler of water. If the purple-lake hue thus com-
municated remains for a quarter of an hour, the liquid is safe ; if
it vanishes, there is more organic matter than there should be.
The organic matter may indeed be soap-suds, or some equally in-
nocent portion of our fated peck of dirt ; but, on the other hand,
it may be the germ of typhoid fever or cholera derived from a
source painful to contemplate. As wise persons who have to do
with strange dogs always caustic a bite, however free from hydro-
phobia the animal may appear to be, so it is prudent always to
filter river water unless we have tested its absolute purity.

Iron is sometimes spoken of as an impurity which is a recom-
mendation, rather than otherwise, of a water, because iron is given
by us as a tonic. But I cannot agree with that opinion. We do
not give iron to healthy persons; for if we did, we should often
find what I have observed in some who habitually use iron-stained
water, viz., deficient nutrition, dyspepsia, and obstinate anaemia.
And when we give iron to the sick, we give it as a drug, and not

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 83

as a drink, and only in short courses, and moreover we do not
order it to be used in cookery. I should strongly advise iron
springs and streams to be avoided.

Lakes are perfected rivers. The organic matter has first been
oxidized by motion and exposure, and then is deposited by rest.
When Londoners see the happiness and saving due to the bring-
ing a few feet of Loch Katrine through Glasgow, no wonder that
their mouths water for Bala, or some other available lake. Mean-
while, the existing companies do their best to imitate lakes, by
letting their property rest in raservoirs before distribution.

Marshes are, however, in a very different position from lakes.
They are not deep enough to allow the organic and mineral mat-
ters to be dropped out of the way, and moreover they are filled
with decaying weeds and insects. It is an observation due to
Hippocrates, that the drinking of marsh water causes enlargement
of the spleen, and many observations have decidedly confirmed
this evidence of the conveyance of ague poison by drinking-water.
Hippocrates remarks also on the unhealthiness of marsh water,
arising out of its frequent change of temperature ; it is hot in
summer, and icy in winter, thus tending to produce catarrhs. 1

Springs are underground streams. Before the surface drainage
which supplies them has got down to their level, it has been most
thoroughly filtered of organic matter, so they are clear and bright.
Moreover, being kept at a considerable barometric pressure, they
hold a good deal of carbonic acid in solution, which renders them
sparkling and exhilarating. But the presence of that carbonic
acid makes them take up also a good deal of lime, iron, and other
mineral constituents of the deep soil. They are " hard," that is
to say their lime forms an insoluble compound with soap, curdles
it and prevents it cleaning your hands. This is a very good test
of the presence of an excess of lime; and another is a deposit tak-
ing place in the teakettle after the carbonic acid, which suspends
it, is driven off by heat. Hard waters dry up the mucous mem-
branes just as they do the skin, arrest digestion, and thus cause
gout, gravel, and stone to be prevalent in the districts watered by
them.

Ordinary hard waters owe their objectionable quality to carbo-

1 Hippocrates, vol. i, p. 532-3, edit. Ktitin.

84 GENERAL DIETETICS.

nate of lime made soluble by the presence of carbonic acid, and
derived from the chalk in the strata through which they have
passed. This is in a great measure cured by the means by which
it is detected, as above-mentioned, viz., by boiling. But in cer-
tain districts, as for example in the Vale of Belvoir, the hard
waters contain sulphate of lime, which is not thrown down by
heat. So no boiling will rectify them, and in such districts rain
or surface water should be employed for drinking and cooking.

Shallow wells have the same virtues and faults as rivers. They
are peculiarly liable to be poisoned by the neighborhood of house
drains. Deep wells have rather tne characters of springs. The
tests of goodness are applicable accordingly. And here, it may
be remarked, that the tests mentioned above are merely hints to
excite suspicion, selected as readily applicable without the appa-
ratus of a laboratory. If a doubt arise, no analysis should be
trusted but that of a special analyst, for which full instructions are
given by Dr. Parkes 1 and others.

The perfections of water are to be

1. Soft.

2. Clean.

3. With air and carbonic acid in it, to make it refreshing.

4. With salt in it, sufficient to make it tasteless, 2 and to prevent
its too ready contamination by lead.

Mineral waters for dietetic, as distinguished from medicinal,
use, should have the same virtues. Manufacturers s"ay that
" soda water " is always most popular, if it contains a minimum
of soda, that is to say if it is simply good drinking-water aerated.
And a very delicate beverage is the fashionable "Apollinaris
water," the salts in which are in proportions to render it most soft
and velvety to the palate, and not in such quantity as to give it
any medicinal action. It is as good for health as the water of
Loch Katrine.

1 Practical Hygiene, b. i, chap, i, sect. 5.

2 Tastelessness is sometimes looked upon as an evidence of the purity of
water ; but this is not strictly true. Distilled water, of absolute purity, has a
decided metallic flavor, which is removed by the addition of salt and air.
The probability is that by these additions it is more assimilated to the fluids
of the body, and therefore is more digestible, more quickly absorbed. For the
same reason unboiled albumen is proverbially tasteless.

ON THE CHOICE OF FOOD. 85

Potash and Lithia waters should be used by invalids only.

I have heard some parents object to their grown-up sons drink-
ing soda water, under the idea that it diminishes their chance of
seeing grandchildren around their hearth. I have not been able
to trace any such baleful influence.

Toast and water (made by pouring boiling water on a burnt
biscuit and two or three cloves) is a wholesome drink, for it se-
cures the neutralization of all organic matter.

Barley water, if well boiled for about a quarter of an hour, is
also a good formula for making hard water more digestible. The
" pearl barley " of which it is made, should be washed with two
waters before using, and about two ounces to the quart is gener-
ally found enough to make a drink to quench thirst. Some very
thinly shaved lemon rind is the wholesomest flavoring.

Those who drink for pleasure lemonade, orangeade, ginger beer,
and the like, should always prepare them at home. The small
dealers, who brew what is sold, are prone to use the cheaper tar-
taric, malic (as found in rhubarb), oxalic, and even mineral acids
instead of oranges and lemons. And they employ, as flavors, the
amylic ethers, or " fruit essences," most deleterious drugs.

Cups of various kinds are wholesome drinks, if not too much
fortified with spirituous liquors. Cura9oa should never be al-
lowed to enter into their composition ; the peel of a Tangerine
orange ground over with a lump of sugar, will give all the flavor
without the poison. Borage and cucumber rind are not injurious.

Ice, In Dr. Bidder's experiments on the gastric juice, he
found that low temperature does not exercise any deleterious in-
fluence upon it. When absolutely frozen, it dissolved albumen as
well as ever, though it was quite spoiled by heat. 1 Again, the
secretion of glands is arrested by feverishness of system, or by
local elevation of animal warmth above the normal degree, and,
in hot weather or hot rooms, it cannot but be beneficial to the
stomach to reduce the unusual temperature to which the over-
heated blood has brought it. Ice, therefore, is one of the most
generally useful additions to the dietary of both sick and healthy
which the energy of modern trade has made; and the ice-box puts

1 Die Verdauungssiifte, Bidder and Schmidt, Experiments ix, 1, 2, x, 1, xi,
1, xvi, xvii.

86 GENERAL DIETETICS.

a daily supply within reach of us all. The only time when ice is
found injurious is, during the exhaustion and real cooling conse-
quent on violent exercise and perspiration. Pond ice, glacier ice,
and snow are much inferior to the lake ice with which the Eng-
lish market is supplied. They contain foreign and, sonietimas,
organic matters, and melt sooner. Ice machines are to be recom-
mended as a means of obtaining cold, when the best ice is out of
reach. They are so frequently improved, that it is unadvisable
to say which is the best at present.

Share this with your friends