The current sciences of medicine and hygiene have made no progress toward answering the question, What shall I eat? The contests between the vegetarians and the meat eaters, the cooked food advocates, raw food advocates, and various other “schools” of theorists, seem to be interminable; and from the mountains of evidence and argument piled up for and against each special theory, it is plain that if we depend on these scientists we shall never know what is the natural food of man. Turning away from the whole controversy, then, we will ask the question of nature herself, and we shall find that she has not left us without an answer.
Most of the errors of dietary scientists grow out of a false premise as to the natural state of man. It is assumed that civilization and mental development are unnatural things; that the man who lives in a modern house, in city or country, and who works in modern trade or industry for his living is leading an unnatural life, and is in an unnatural environment; that the only “natural” man is a naked savage, and that the farther we get from the savage the farther we are from nature. This is wrong. The man who has all that art and science can give him is leading the most natural life, because he is living most completely in all his faculties. The dweller in a well-appointed city flat, with modern conveniences and good ventilation, is living a far more naturally human life than the Australian savage who lives in a hollow tree or a hole in the ground.