This section is from the book "A Third Pot-Pourri", by C. W. Earle. Also available from Amazon: A Third Pot-Pourri.
This gives a total of 1,208 grains proteid, which is the physiological allowance for a man or woman of 9 stone 9 lbs. leading an active working life.
The details are as follows: -
4 ozs. curd cheese
grains proteid or albumen.
8 ozs. bread or cereals
16 ozs. potatoes. .
16 ozs. fruit ...
1 pint of milk..
The cost of this diet to anyone living in the country with a couple of goats, a patch of vegetable garden, some fruit trees, and an acre of arable land, would be literally nothing but the labour of working the land and caring for the goats. Honey, too, could be added, and with due exercise of forethought in bottling, drying and storing surplus fruits and vegetables, the supply during the winter months could be secured.
To those fortunate enough to be able to get it, goat's milk is highly to be recommended, for the minuteness of the fat globules makes it easy of digestion, and being thinner to the palate, it is appreciated by those who dislike the fulness of unseparated cow's milk. If the demand in London were at all in proportion to the worth of the article, the present ridiculous price charged for it would fall to something within reason. Last summer I went into one of the principal branch offices of a well-known London dairy and asked the price of goat's milk. I was told it was 4s. a quart, and in reply to my involuntary exclamation at such an exorbitant charge, the amiable young woman in charge said, "But think how many lives it has saved, Madam!" It did not seem to occur to her, or to her employers, that this was the very reason why it should be within the reach of all who need it.
heapest and healthiest of all the forms of diet I have experimented upon is that of bread and fruit. With bread, dates, and apples, it is easy to live on 4d. a day, and get the full proteid ration for active working life for a body weight of 9 stone 4 lbs. A big man might have to spend 6d. Life on this diet is easier and happier than on the regime of meat, fish, game, wine, tea, &c, which costs eight times as much, for there are no digestive troubles on bread and fruit, unless one makes the mistake of taking them in a wrong proportion, or of eating stupid kinds of bread and unripe or overripe fruit; and when one thinks how digestion controls such things as depression, headache, irritability, nervousness, exhaustion, and other minor ills which go to make some lives almost unbearable, one cannot help wishing that all suffering people could be persuaded to give fair trial to a diet of the simplest foods.
Unhappily, for the physical well-being of the next generation, the countryman who now possesses a large well-stocked garden, and, as in many of the villages in the West and South of England, often an orchard and bit of pasture as well, has so little knowledge of how to make the best use of his belongings that he sells his produce in order to buy unwholesome food such as tea, bacon, beer, butcher's meat, and tinned abominations like lobster, salmon, sardines, and potted meats. There is little reason to suppose that the parents of to-day will change their habits of diet, but much may be hoped for in the way of a more intelligent and less wasteful order of things in the next generation, now that the beginnings of the chemistry and economics of food have been introduced into the School Board curriculum. And if, meanwhile, the educated and leisured classes would take the trouble to look carefully into these matters, and begin to practise a more enlightened system of dietetics, such as can be begun without any household upset of drastic change, the servant class would at least see that masters and mistresses no longer believe that life depends on eating meat three times a day.
great opportunity in this direction might be seized with advantage by the wives of country clergy. The wife of the present Bishop of Japan, when living at Andover, used to have a group of young village women to ''gh tea," or early supper at the Vicarage every Sunday evening, the household servants being given a holiday, and the meal being prepared and shared by the family and guests.
A similar plan could be made the occasion for introducing the simpler foods in many an attractive guise, and if the supper were given on a week day, it could be arranged to follow an informal cookery demonstration. Servants, like children, are very imitative, and will take to a new idea much more quickly if it is not forced upon them. One mother of a young family lately lit upon a happy plan in this connection. Her husband took to the simpler diet for health's sake, and she tried it from curiosity. The children soon began to beg for the food they saw their parents eating, and at last, as a great treat, they were allowed a non-meat dinner twice a week, with the result that before long they chose no meat at all.
his surely is a good way to treat the subject with regard to servants. Let them see that you are well and able to work without meat and stimulants, and they will gradually lose their faith in beef, beer, and tea - aith for which the example of the upper classes is entirely responsible, and which the bulk of the medical profession still supports.
has taken hundreds of years of bitter experience of disease to awaken even a small percentage of the race to seek more wholesome food, and it will take centuries yet to convince the majority. Meanwhile there are interesting signs that the course of evolution for humanity leads through a meat-eating stage, and although one may gladly endeavour to save suffering to those who are ready for the change, one can possess one's soul in patience with regard to the world at large. Our very blunders towards the truth have their place and purpose in fitting us to appreciate the truth when we find it. The age of excessive meat-eating is helping to produce a highly nervous race, which is apparently the material required for the next stage of evolution -stage in which the psychic force is to dominate the physical.
Only by the apparent perishing of one order can another and higher order be born. Perhaps when physical suffering and disease have reached their limit, we shall be ready to receive and to obey the laws of a saner and loftier way of life. When a man like Virchow says, " The future is with the vegetarians," one realises that with all their errors, and they are legion, they are the pioneers whose blundering efforts may be compared to the old shoes, and empty tins, and broken shards which go to make the foundation of the new road along which the whole race will some day travel.