A Perfect diet is one which gives the most strength with the least taxation on the vital forces, and the least encouragement to intemperance.
"We advise you to change your habit of living; but while you do this, we caution you to move understandingly. I am acquainted with families who have changed from a meat diet to one that is impoverished. Their food is so poorly prepared that the stomach loathes it. Here is one reason why some have not been successful in their efforts to simplify their food." - "Healthful Living" par.377..
In making a change from a meat to a vegetarian diet, great care should be taken to supply the table with well-cooked articles of food, that the appetite, when not perverted, may relish it. "There should not be many kinds of food at any one meal, but all meals should not be composed of the same kinds of food without variation." -Ibid.`, par. 367.
The best combinations of foods are the following : Fruits and grains; grains, vegetables, and nuts.
It is best to have fruits and grains for breakfast, and grains, vegetables, and nuts for dinner. Grains would include not only all kinds of mushes and gruels made from grains, but all kinds of breads, - rolls, sticks, gems, crackers, raised bread and buns, zwieback, granola, and granose. Fruits can be served in a variety of ways,- fresh, stewed, on toasts, fruit juice, and fruit sauces. Nuts may also be used with the breakfast if desired, as nuts combine very well with fruits. Then for dinner, the grains prepared in any of the various ways, with vegetables and nuts, which can be prepared in a hundred different ways, are variety enough.
The general rules for food combinations are the following :-
I. Do not combine fruits with nitrogenous foods.
II. Never combine foods where the time of digestion greatly differs, for example : apples digest in two hours, boiled beets in three hours and forty-five minutes, and potatoes in three hours and thirty minutes. If these were eaten at the same meal, the apple would have to remain in the stomach for one hour and forty-five minutes after it was digested before it could leave the stomach, with the other food; and during that time, if the stomach was weak, fermentation might set in. If the stomach is healthy, the gastric juice will be strong enough to destroy all fermentation germs. For this reason, nothing seems to hurt a healthy stomach, but continued ill treatment will cause it to weaken.