Page:Guide to health.djvu/43

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31
FOOD

medicine were always at hand. In order to be able to eat well, I used to take purgatives very often, as well as some tonic or other. In those days, I had not a third of my present capacity for work, in spite of the fact that I was then in the prime of youth. Such a life is surely pitiable, and if we consider the matter seriously, we must also admit it to be mean, sinful and thoroughly contemptible.

Man is not born to eat, nor should he live to eat. His true function is to know and serve his Maker; but, since the body is essential to this service, we have perforce to eat. Even atheists will admit that we should eat merely to preserve our health, and not more than is needed for this purpose.

Turn to the birds and beasts, and what do you find? They never eat merely to please the palate, they never go on eating till their inside is full to overflowing. On the other hand, they eat only to appease their hunger, and even then only just as much as will appease their hunger. They take the food provided by Nature, and do not cook their food. Can it be that man alone is created to worship the palate? Can it be that he alone is destined to be eternally suffering from disease? Those animals that live a natural life of freedom never once die of hunger. Among them there are no distinctions of rich and poor,—of those who eat many times a day, and those who do not get even one