The neophyte in trophology is usually bewildered by the conflicting claims of the "authorities" and by the vast array of cleverly advertised "health foods" offered for his use. These "health foods" are "indispensable," in fact, to round out his diet and assure him of adequate nourishment. Most of the claims made for the patent foods offered as indispensable adjuncts to the diet are false. These foods are far inferior to fresh fruits and green vegetables and some of them are positively harmful.
Dietetic tricks--pep cocktails, potassium broths, horse-mint tea, etc.--are offered as miracle workers. These are mere catch-penny devices and do not possess the virtues ascribed to them. One doctor makes a great fuss over what he calls the twenty-twenty-sixty diet. It is this in name only. The name is a catch-penny device. Its promoters do not even figure out the matter or disclose how one is to figure it out for himself. Indeed, figuring it out would be impossible.
The authors of recipes and cook books know nothing of the newer knowledge of nutrition. They throw their materials together in more or less haphazard fashion according to time honored custom in preparing tasty indigestibles. Their cooking recommendations spoil much of the food in the process.
The following sample menus will be found adequate to supply the nutritive needs of the hardest worker. Chronic sufferers should eat much less. Mental workers will require less starch. By using only wholesome foods and following the rules for food combining given in a previous chapter, the reader may easily work out a great variety of menus.
The object aimed at in this book is to teach the reader the principles of trophology, particularly the principles of food combining, so that he may work out his own menus from the food at hand. Menus must change with the seasons, as foods come into and go out of season. Foods differ in various parts of the country, so that a menu prepared for one part of the country cannot always be prepared in another. The reader is urged not to live by charts, but by principles. Learn the principles and you can work out your own menus. Don't be dependent, all your life, on the menus prepared by another.
In employing the menus herewith given, bear in mind that any green vegetable may be substituted for any other in preparing menus. If the starch given in one of these menus is not available, any other starch may be substituted. If you cannot procure the protein given in the menu, any other protein may be used. Thus: if pecans are not available use almonds or Brazil nuts; if Hubbard squash is not available, use potatoes or peas; if spinach is out of season, use chard or beet greens, or kale. Making up your own menus is so simple that you should never have to puzzle over how to create your own. Vary the menus from day to day. Do not permit your diet to become monotonous.
When vegetables are cooked in the waterless cooker they are steamed in their own juices. To avoid the clumsy statement in directing the preparation of cooked vegetables: "cooked in the waterless cooker," I shall employ the term, steamed. The reader must bear in mind that I do not have reference to the regular practice of steaming vegetables.
Those who desire to use meat or eggs may substitute these for nuts or cheese in the foregoing evening menus, except where fruit salads are used. Strict vegetarians will exclude cheese from these menus.