History of Fasting

Theory of Fasting

The Technic Of Fasting

The Hygiene Of The Fast

Natural Therapy



As gradual approach to abstinence has been shown to be conducive to success in outcome, so, after systemic cleansing has been wholly or in part accomplished, return to solid food should be brought about by degrees. The digestive organs have been deprived for a time of the exercise of their tasks, and, if at first overloaded and hence over-stimulated by surfeit, they are apt to refuse function, and toxication will perhaps recur with results that may prove troublesome. Hence it is recommended that, for several days after a fast is broken, not more than two pints of the broths described daily ingested, increasing this amount to three pints when digestion is fully reestablished. Vegetables in solid form may then be substituted, with, as a variant, salads of lettuce, tomatoes, and other like food-stuffs, alone or in combination. It is further recommended that a daily two-meal plan be thereafter adopted and adhered to, for, in most instances, with proper selection, two meals each day are ample for constructive demand. When return has been made to solid food after a fast, the morning meal may be confined solely to fruit, while the second repast should include a salad in some form or other.

In resuming feeding after fasting very young children it is found that the strained juice of ripe tomatoes, heated to about 200 degrees, or that of carrots boiled to tenderness, gives satisfactory results. Malted milk or orange juice and honey may also be used.

In some of the treatises upon fasting for the relief of disease patients are advised, upon the return of hunger, to resume feeding upon a dietary composed exclusively of the milk of the cow, gradually increasing the amount ingested until as many as eight quarts daily are consumed. The author differs widely from this recommendation, and reasons in support of this difference of opinion are here presented.

With slight variations referable to man the milk of the cow contains all of the nutritive compounds required by a growing animal, and it contains them in the proportions of a correct scientific dietary. Popularly milk is regarded as a beverage rather than, as in truth it is a nutrient vehicle most concentrated in the combination of its elements. In order to present a comprehensive idea of its composition, it is well to study the solid products of milk as they are obtained by various processes in the dairy, the kitchen, and the laboratory. It may also prove helpful to enumerate and describe the classes into which the solids of milk are divided. These are: (1) proteid; (2) fat; (3) sugar; and (4) mineral matter.

Fat constitutes about four per cent of the weight of milk. In the common process of making butter the greater portion of the fat is separated from the other ingredients. The liquid which remains, called buttermilk, contains the rest of the nutrients of the milk excepting those small portions that cling to the fat. On examining buttermilk after it has become a little sour, it will be seen that it contains a white solid which in the process of churning has been divided into very small particles. This solid is casein, the chief proteid of milk. It constitutes 3.3 per cent, or about one-thirtieth, of the weight of the milk

The souring of whole milk also helps to an understanding of its composition. When this takes place the casein and most of the fat separate from the still liquid portion (the whey), and form what is known as the curd. When, however, the attempt is made to separate the curd completely for the purpose of making what is known as cottage cheese, much of the fat is usually carried off with the whey. And again in the processes of manufacture of butter and cheese one becomes familiar with the solid, casein, and with the fat of milk. But even the whey, the liquid portion, has important solids in it that are less apparent and consequently not as well known. By heating whey it is discovered that it is filled with small particles of white matter that soon sink to the bottom of the liquid. This is albumen, a substance always present in cow's milk, though in much smaller amount than is the casein. It resembles the albumen of the white of egg, and it differs from casein by not curding when milk sours, and by remaining in solution in the whey. Furthermore it does not form curd in the stomach, which the casein does. This proteid which by the process of heating is shown to be present in the whey is the chief proteid in mother's milk, but in cow's milk it is, as has been said, in very much smaller amount than the curding proteid. Therefore, cow's milk, even if diluted and modified, can never be a perfect equivalent for human milk, and it is easy to understand that a proteid that remains dissolved in the whey is more readily digested than one which curds soon after reaching the stomach.

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