This section is from the book "Meals Medicinal", by W. T. Fernie. Also available from Amazon: Meals Medicinal: With "Herbal Simples" Curative Foods From the Cook in Place of Drugs From the Chemist.
But, as says an old adage, "You may lead a horse to the water, yet you cannot make him drink." A clergyman who is in the habit of taking dwellers in London slums down into the country, by fifties, in breaks, for summer holidays about the green fields and gardens, was dismayed on the party drawing up one evening at the entrance to their alley, after one of these outings, to hear one of them say, as if giving voice to the general sentiment, "The country's fine for a 'oliday, mates, but arter all this smells like 'ome." As regards the hereditary bias of tubercular consumption, it cannot be expected that this can be eradicated in one generation even by the recently adopted, and highly efficacious treatment of destroying the microbes which specialize the disease - by high altitudes, open, fresh, cold air, abundant sunlight, and most generous feeding.
"Naturam expellas furca, tamen usque recurret, Et mala perrumpet, furtim fastidia. victrix".
So says the well-known Horatian maxim; and as yet modern medicine has only modified the "usque" to "scepe." It may be well to ask what Koch, the eminent pathologist, means when he pronounces that the tuberculosis of consumption is not inherited. If he means that children of consumptive parents are not born with tubercles ready formed, he is certainly right; they are not so born. But they are born with the potency of both tubercles, and whiskers, for future development as life proceeds. And it is this predisposition which has to be slowly eradicated by the patient sanitation of several successive lifetimes, so that the bacillus of tuberculosis may then no longer find a soil which can support it. Microbes which produce disease are often known to occupy harmlessly an. organism immune against their further development. Respecting the pursuance of open-air treatment in England, serious doubts may well be entertained as to whether, or not, this is safely, or hopefully practicable, because of our damp, chilly, changeable climate during nine months of the year.
For a cure by open air such air must, as an essential requirement, be dry, pure, and of an equable temperature throughout.