This work has been written during irregular and interrupted intervals, which have occurred amidst the pressure of other cares, and has passed through but one manuscript to the press; yet the ideas contained in it are the result of many years' experience, observation, and study; not particularly the study of books and others' theories, but the study of natural law, and the philosophy of facts. And although its leading motto is "Health without Medicine," yet it is not expected that no medicines are ever needed; it is sometimes necessary to take medicine to remove disease -- assist nature to throw off her incumbrances, and restore herself to health and strength. Yet whoever will obey nature's laws, will, comparatively speaking, have health without the aid of medicine. Medicines should be used only as unavoidables; they should only be resorted to when the remedy may not be worse than the disease, as a choice between two evils, both of which should be avoided as far as possible.

This manual is not intended particularly for the eye of the medical man, but for the mass of the people. And although the author may be considered ultra by some, on the subject of animal food, yet it is most, sincerely to be hoped that no one will allow himself to imbibe a prejudice against the rest of the work, because he cannot consent to this doctrine; for, let it be remembered, that it is said in the introduction of this topic, that no strenuousness is intended on the subject, but that it is better that every one judge candidly on the matter for himself. While, therefore, the writer would urge -- not for himself, but for the good of the community -- with all earnestness and solicitude, a serious attention to, and regard for, his views and suggestions on every other topic contained in this work, yet, with all modesty, would he retire from any controversy with those who cannot relinquish the use of meat. He is content with stating what he believes to be the facts in the case, and would leave the decision of the matter entirely with those who may think or act differently.