Greetings! Today we shall start a new segment entitled, The Root of Intemperance. In today’s class, we shall learn about the relation that exists between what is served on the dining table, and the use of alcohol and narcotics.
Two Ways of Living
There are two ways of living. When the right way is followed, the body does not crave stimulants or narcotics; there is no desire for them. That is the plan set forth in this class. The other way is the popular way, and the foods and drinks consumed result, in many cases, in starting cravings which can be satisfied only with mild or strong stimulants and narcotics; if for mild ones, they, in time, lead to the stronger ones.
By God’s grace, this class will reveal the manifold ways by which the appetites for tobacco, alcohol, and other narcotics are developed. Many of the primary steps in these experiences are usually overlooked, and therefore the student should expect some very unusual information in our studies.
Inasmuch as the cravings which are satisfied by alcohol, tobacco, and narcotics are often started by other things, manifestly, to deal with these appetites after they are developed and not eradicate the habits which constitute their source, is superficial and ineffective. Therefore the special object of this segment is to study the interrelation between the different groups of common practices out of which these appetites grow.
It may seem to be somewhat revolutionary, but when you stop to think of the physical and mental condition of mankind today, it is perfectly apparent that something revolutionary needs to be done.
Group One, Irritating Foods
There are certain irritating foods which tend to develop a thirst which water does not quench, and which will be satisfied only with strong drink–something stronger than water. The foods in this class include: Condiments and spices such as, pepper, mustard, anything which is “hot” when it is cold, vinegar, excess of salt, and excess of sugar.
From time immemorial the vendors of intoxicating beverages have ofttimes maintained a free lunch counter. The foods offered possessed enough food value to lure the hungry, but at the same time these foods carried other substances which tended to develop a thirst which water would not quench. An inventory of the free lunch revealed such foods as bologna sausage, liver sausage, cheese, codfish balls, pretzels, and potato chips. To these fried, freely salted, highly spiced and seasoned foods would be added some form of grain such as crackers rye bread or pumpernickel.
Concerning this sort of free lunch, offered in connection with the sale of alcoholic liquors, Haven Emerson, M.D., of Columbia University, a widely recognized authority, wrote the following in a personal letter:
“In answer to yours of May 15 let me say that articles used to stimulate thirst rather than to slake it are the common foods of the free lunch counters. In general, persons with a well-balanced diet include sufficient fruits and vegetables are satisfied without recourse to alcoholic drinks.”
“Neither of these statements can, however, be taken to mean that either the prevention or cure of alcoholism can be relied upon by dietary measures, although recovery from chronic alcoholism is certainly aided by a liberal use of fruits and vegetables as part of a balanced dietary.”
Many writers-doctors, dietitians, and teachers-have recognized that irritating foods create a thirst for something stronger than water. Some of these writers have had many years of experience in treating alcoholic patients, and have made numerous experiments with diet, and have recorded their findings.
Perhaps the clearest statement of the kind that has come into my library from a physician was made by Daniel H. Kress, M.D., for many years connected with the Washington, D.C., Sanitarium. It is reproduced here:
How A Thirst Is Created
“From my own experience in the treatment of alcoholics, I am convinced that many may be cured if properly treated. The treatment if effective, however, must be directed toward the removal of the craving. Fruits, cereals, nuts, milk, and other products which are not irritating or stimulating will in time destroy all desire for alcoholic beverages. Again and again I have been forced to recognize that dietetic error are in a large measure responsible for the craving which exists for alcohol. The irritation produced by irritating and stimulating foods and drinks calls for something that will afford temporary relief from the unpleasant symptoms associated with such irritation. Alcohol being a narcotic supplies this demand; and in the absence of alcohol the use of tobacco or cigarettes will afford temporary relief.
“The saloon keepers in former days observed that certain foods create a thirst that water will not quench. They kept a lunch counter for their patrons, but not because they had compassion on the unfortunate poor. If so, they would have fed the drunkard’s wife and children. But with the saloon keeper it was a matter of business. The secret of the free lunch table could be discovered by taking an inventory of the food that was found upon it. It was not laded with juicy peaches, pears, oranges, etc. They knew that such foods would diminish their business. Upon that such counter were found highly seasoned foods, as sausage, pickled pigs’ feet, smoked ham, mustard, pepper, and other irritating products. Experience taught that the saloon keeper that these foods created a craving which led men to the bar for drink.
“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.” 1 Timothy 6:10
“The sad thing about this is that many a good, well-meaning wife and mother is supplying her husband and her sons with the same kind of food that was formerly found on the free lunch table in the saloon. Many a mother’s prayer is in this way being neutralized.
“At a public gathering in England some years ago, Staff Captain Hudson, matron of the South Newington Inebriates’ Home, in relating her experience in the treatment of inebriates after the adoption of a fruit, grain, and vegetable diet, said, ‘Speaking generally, the benefits of this diet are incalculable. Lazy, vicious, bloated, glutinous, bad-tempered women who had hitherto needed weeks and even months nursing and watching, to my astonishment and delight, under this new treatment made rapid recovery.’
“For a number of years I have depended upon such foods in the treatment of inebriates, with gratifying results. From my experience of over forty years in the treatment of alcoholics, I am convinced that when the relation that exists between what is served on our American tables and the use of alcohol, is better understood, and is given attention that it deserves by physicians, ministers of the gospel, temperance advocates, and the makers of the home, the existing desire for alcohol will disappear, and with it will disappear much of the irritability, impatience, and domestic unhappiness which are chiefly responsible for the prevalence of divorce and crime.
“The temperance crusade of the future must begin in the homes… When this is
done, there will be less need of state or national temperance crusades; and until it is done, the efforts of temperance workers will be hopelessly hindered. The hope of prohibition centers around the family circle and the home. “Where are the mothers and housewives who, by giving painstaking attention to the needs of the family table, and avoiding the use of rich, stimulating food, will strengthen our bulwarks of temperance? Mere public education can never accomplish this.”
“I have found that a diet free from unnatural irritants will always result in a decrease in the desire for both tobacco and alcohol. I have never yet discovered a drunkard or inebriate who was not passionately fond of spicy, highly seasoned foods and also of flesh foods. I have no doubt that one reason why these habits are so common is because dietetic errors are common.”
A Quote to Note: “…the root of the righteous yieldeth fruit.” Proverbs 12:11
Grab a friend and share the wealth, from what you’ve learned in the School of Health! In our next class, we shall learn about where the root of intemperance is often found. Until then, God bless!
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