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Dee. 12, 1814. Dxtlksix.
I Am happy to learn from Tout friendly letter that your book, fcr which I bare long been anxiously looking, is in progress for pab&ann. I wish to see you before the public, and to learn ■ yoor opponents will venture fairly to encounter you by argu|kc;. and give tbe subject that full discussion which medical er/sacos oi infinitely minor importance are daily receiving. Fmoi sach a discussion, I can only anticipate a triumph of jo*r doctrines equally honorable to you and beneficial to
My s«■ experience on the subject has been perfectly satis £ac*ary. "When I first adopted your regimen in my family, I hegaa it without any undue prejudice in its favor. My own hs*a& had always been good, so that I bad no personal alarm « saBentt; ;o drive me from common habits; and having had av> ^'twss a*d deaths among my children, I could not be quite WHKOYwt by tbe predictions of permanent weakness or danger•ws or sasai moiWhes with which I was on all sides threatened, as the iaevwaHe effects of this mode of living. After persisting w*r iour years io the use of a strict vegetable diet and distilled water, 1 am Kappy to give my decided testimony in favor of yo*r system. Its effects have been a gradual and important ssreej^aesursj of she constitution, without any inconvenience or dssi^Tvet•;-> symptom. 1 found the change easy and pleasant, and «** never had the lesst wish to resume the use of animal food. I have always used much exercise; I have found my power of bearing fatigue increase; and I have never during the whoie time felt even the slightest indisposition.
With respect to my children, A . aged twelve, has always been, a stout boy. but was formerly liable to violent inflara■suory attacks on his chest and windpipe, which only yielded t» the powerful applications of bleeding, blisters, James' Powder, and cugitabs. He had always been hardily brought up, •ad lived less fully than most children with whom I am acquainted. These attacks were extremely sudden, and were preceded by an unusual appearance of health. Since we have adopted your regimen, he has never had a day's illness, and is in s«e. muscular strength, and power of supporting fatigue equal to any boy of his age I have met with.
B- , aged ten. The history of his health resembles that
of his brother; his life has been repeatedly endangered by the same inflammations of the trachea and lungs, which have been repelled by the same remedies. The change of diet has had the like favorable effects upon him; and he has enjoyed the same freedom from sickness or indisposition. These boys, in color and fullness of habit, have every appearance of perfect and robust health; they are thinly clad, much abroad, and exposed, without precaution or injury, to all changes of the weather. They find their mode of diet easy and pleasant, and have no wish for animal food.
C , five years old, was a very delicate child from the
birth, and suffered much from want of action of the bowels; this defect has been completely removed, and though still less robust than the two former, the general health is quite good. This child has been twice indisposed for a short time with cold and sore throat, the last time about six months ago; did not change the diet till some time after the experiment had been tried on the stronger part of the family, and though so young and so delicate, was the only one of the party who retained for any length of time an inclination for animal food. We should not of course like to appear by name before the public, but for any other use you choose to make of them, my observations on this or any future occasion are quite at your service.
General Debility, Mental Weakness, Sleeplessness, and Headache. PROM A CORRESPONDENT.
Sandon, near Royston, Dec. 28, 1814.
About two years ago I was so very sickly that I had but little enjoyment in life. My great complaint was general debility, which daily increased upon me, took away all desire and ability for exertion, and rendered my mind incapable of attending to any subject for any length of time. Occasionally I was under a considerable stimulus and animation, which were followed by coldness and languor. It is not an easy task to make those persons comprehend me who have never felt this distressing debility of the human frame, which so materially affects the spirits, and deprives the mind of all its energies. I am convinced that man is completely a material being, and that all permanent courage and strength of motive spontaneously result from the strength and purity of the physical svstem. Sleep did not seem to benefit me; my appetite was craving, and seldom satisfied, and once a week I was subject to a distressing sick headache. My fluids were evidently in an impure state, consequently the solid parts were not nourished; for impurity cannot impart strength, and hence that general debility of which I complained. Having read Mr. Newton's work, and your publications, I resolved to adopt the use of vegetables with distilled water, and now, after the experience of nearly two years, I can say with the strictest truth and certainty, that my health has been gradually improving up to the present time. My strength is greater than it' ever was before; my painful sensations have left me, and my headache seldom attacks me, and never with its former violence. I do not mean to say that I am perfectly well; such an idea would be absurd, and contrary to the laws of the human constitution; but I am certainly better in health now than I remember ever to have been in any former period of my life. The comparison is not to be made between me and any other person, but between what / am now and what / was before I adopted this regimen.
Vegetables are certainly the natural support of man: they recommend themselves by their freshness and purity; and by their natural sweetness and agreeableness to the palate. They require so little trouble to prepare them, and are always a nice, clean, and delicate food; wnile dead animal substances are very offensive to the senses, and it becomes a very dirty and disagreeable task to cook and prepare them for the appetite. The slaughter of animals is also a ferocious and disgusting act, which greatly opposes the growth of benevolent dispositions. Comparative anatomy has clearly proved that man is, in his construction, an herbivorous animal, which ought to have great weight with every rational mind. The world, sir, will thank you, in some future time, for your labors in one of the most benevolent investigations that can interest our understandings. Yours, sincerely, G. G. Fordham.
Mr. Fordham received, in the course of his attempts to improve his health, convincing proof of the necessity of uniting the use of the pure water to the vegetable regimen. He at first left off animal food only, using the same water to which he had been accustomed. But he found the change irksome, complained much of his feeble and fastidious stomach, and did not appear to receive due strength and nourishment from his food. To some inquiries which I made on this subject, Mr. Fordham sent me the following answer:
"You are perfectly correct in the idea that the vegetable diet was irksome and uneasy to my stomach before I had united with it the use of distilled water. I thought at first, that the benefit of distilled water must be a mere fancy, and I even ridiculed it as trifling and absurd ; but I am now, by experience, thoroughly persuaded that it is of the greatest importance. I felt an immediate benefit, my stomach was easy and light, and I did not experience the slightest sense of weakness, but a gradual increase of strength. I am convinced that the use of distilled water greatly assists the stomach in the digestion of vegetable substances."
Mr. Fordham, I must add, is a young man, under thirty years of age.
Disposition to Pulmonary Consumption.
Feb. 20, 1815.—Having received the appointment of physician to the General Dispensary, Aldersgate-street, in the year 1810, it has given me the opportunity of making more numerous trials of what can be done by regimen than I before possessed. It is obvious, however, that the description of persons, who apply to these institutions, is not such as can, in general, be wholly depended upon, either for regularity of conduct, or for veracity. But, I believe, that in the examples I shall select, due attention was paid to the regulations enjoined.
J. U., aged about twenty-seven, applied to the dispensary, about Christmas, 1810, for a severe, dry, rending cough. I thought the man, from his habit and appearance, was becoming consumptive. He was thin, and rather emaciated. He had been troubled with the cough only during the winter, but he said, that for three or four years he had found his breath fail. He could not take exercise so well as formerly, nor go up stairs. I advised him, therefore, in conjunction with the medicines suited to his case, to adopt the regimen, with which he declared himself perfectly willing to comply.
He soon lost his cough; which, however, I do not attribute to this change. He informed me, moreover, that he found immediate relief from it. He found his respiration strengthened, and, in no long time, he became as equal to exercise as in the former part of his life.
I saw this man occasionally for three years, during which time he continued in improved health; but he remained thin and meagre; and he had some returns of cough, but of no great violence, the two following winters. I remained, therefore, of the opinion I first adopted, that he had been really on the verge of consumption. It is, however, impossible to prove this to the complete satisfaction of others. In internal diseases, we must content ourselves with probable conjectures. After this time he changed his residence, and I have lost sight of him.
This man kept a ham and beef shop; and he cooked his meat by steam. He found it easy, then, to prepare his distilled water by a part of the apparatus which he employed in his business. I was satisfied, on this account, that he really, in this respect, followed the directions given him.
Chronic Pains of the Bowels, Bloody Discharges, and Constipation.
J. K., aged eleven, had, in the beginning of the summer of 1810, the scarlatina. On recovering, it was observed that the abdomen was too hard; he complained of pains of the bowels, and had often bloody stools. He took a good deal of medicine without benefit, and continuing ill, became my patient at the General Dispensary, in February, 1811.
He complained of severe pains of the bowels, apparently like colic, attacking him two or three times in the course of the day. The abdomen was so hard, that it would not yield to the pressure of the hand, and strangely protuberant, irregular, and deformed. He was in a decaying state of health; but the pulse was regular and natural. The bowels were irregular, but commonly bound.
As I thought there was little probability of this boy being cured by medicines alone, I proposed to his mother to join the regimen to the use of such remedies as he appeared to require; to which she gave her consent. He began about the middle of February, 1811.
The pains of the abdomen continued to recur with just the