Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 43.djvu/245

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233
WHY GROW OLD?

and in undue quantity. As a rule, the victim of indigestion flies to medicines for relief, or to one of the thousand-and-one quack remedies that are advertised to cure everything.

How much more rational would it not be to alter the diet, and to give the stomach the food for which it is craving! If the stomach could talk, I can imagine it, after pills, and gin and bitters, and quack remedies of every description have been poured into it, begging to be relieved of such horrors, and saying, "Give me a little rest, and a cup of beef tea and a biscuit, and go and take a little fresh air and exercise yourself." Instead of this, the miserable organ has to be dosed with all sorts of horrible concoctions in the way of drugs, brandies and sodas, and champagne, to endeavor to stimulate it into action. There is no doubt that the stomach that requires stimulants and potions to enable it to act efficiently, can hardly be said to be in a healthy state, or can long continue to do its work properly.

The digestive organs, unfortunately, are the first to sympathize with any mental worry. They are like a barometer, and indicate the errors of malnutrition and their consequences. The healthy action of every organ depends upon the proper assimilation of the food taken. As soon as the digestive process fails, everything fails, and ill-health results with all its disastrous concomitants.

Indigestion is more particularly the ailment of those engaged in sedentary pursuits, and if a person who is frequently the victim of it would, instead of flying to drugs, try such a diet as the following for a few days, he would not regret doing so. At least, this is my experience:

He should begin the day at 7 a. m. with a tumbler of milk and soda water, or a cup of Liebig's beef tea, or of bovril. At half past seven he should take a tepid or cold sponge bath and rub the skin thoroughly with a coarse towel or, better still, before the bath, with a massage rubber. At half past eight for his breakfast, one or two cups of weak tea, with a little milk and no sugar. A little stale bread or dry toast. A grilled sole or whiting, or the lean of an underdone mutton chop, or a newly laid egg lightly boiled. For luncheon at one, a few oysters and a cut of a loin of mutton, some chicken or game, or any other light digestible meat. A little stale bread and a glass of dry sherry or moselle. Such a one should avoid afternoon tea as he would poison, and at six or seven have his dinner, which should consist of plainly cooked fish, mutton, venison, chicken, grouse, partridge, hare, pheasant, tripe boiled in milk, sweetbread, lamb, roast beef, and stale bread. French beans, cauliflower, asparagus, vegetable marrow, or sea kale, may be used as vegetable, and half a wineglassful of cognac in water may be drunk. If he takes wine, one or two glasses of