By Herbert W Armstrong
What should you do when you, or your children, catch a cold, have a fever, or become ill?
WHY ARE people sick? Many seem to think our bodies were made to become sick every little while.
Man ought never to be sick. Man, remember, is the creation of God. True, he is mortal, made of the dust of the ground. He is composed of 16 principal elements of matter. Yet it is God’s great PURPOSE to create out of man the supreme Masterpiece of all His creative art! — perfect spiritual characters — beings to be raised to the level of God!
We, now, are the clay models to be fashioned, formed and shaped in spiritual character by the Master Sculptor — if we will yield ourselves into His hands — converted into the glorious spiritual image of the Almighty Himself! So, as we now are of the earth — earthy, bearing the image of the Adam who was dust, we shall thru God’s process bear the image of the heavenly GOD! (I Cor. 15:49).
Purpose of Human Body
For this purpose the human body was made to be the TEMPLE of the Holy Spirit. God created man in the very highest material medium for the expression of the divine intelligence.
No instrument has yet been, or ever will be devised by man, even in this machine age, which can approach, in delicacy of operation, the mechanism of the human body, with its enormous range of functional power.
The Creator made the human organism to run, and to keep running for a natural lifetime — not to get sick or break down. The human constitution is so marvelously constructed that it will take far more punishment and abuse before some part of it breaks down than any other animal or any mechanism ever made by man.
And yet, largely through ignorance, we humans abuse our bodies and violate the laws of health to so great an extent that almost every home is frequently visited with sickness! The human body is never sick unless injured or abused, though many inherit certain weaknesses and impairments at birth from the dissipations and sins of ancestors:
Today thousands of parents send their sons to state agricultural colleges to learn how to feed and care for the bodies of swine, never giving one thought to the proper feeding and care of their own human bodies. The average American table has been described by a noted physician as a dietetic horror. In the selection and preparation of foods, we follow tradition, and eat what we “like,” with never a thought as to whether it is wholesome food or rank poison.
People who would not think of putting an adulterated, injurious oil in the crankcase of the car, or a polluted fuel-oil in the gas-tank, will stuff their own stomachs and their children’s with adulterated, so-called “refined” foods that are actually poisonous, with never a thought about it.
And then when we or our children are sick, we suppose it is because God did a bad job of making us, and it is INTENDED for us to be sick!
LAWS Regulate Your Body
The human body functions according to definite laws. It needs fresh air in the lungs — not tobacco smoke. It needs pure water, and plenty of it — not soda pop, stimulants, and man-perverted drinks. It needs a proper amount of joyous, exhilarating exercise, and walking — not riding everywhere in the car, nor taking one’s exercise sitting down in the paid admission stands of a baseball park, or a football or basketball game. It needs sufficient sunshine, not the dark, dank congestion of crowded man-built cities. It needs cleanliness and proper elimination — not the almost universal constipation caused by neglect and foodless foods contaminated in man-made “food” factories. It needs relaxation, ample rest and sleep — not the nerve — shattering, excitable pleasure-seeking life — and night life — of today’s modern whirl.
And last, but far from least, it needs wholesome, properly prepared natural food — not the starchy, sugary, greasy mess of contaminated stuff we ignorantly suppose to be food today!
Bad habits of thought, insufficient exercise, and other destructive habits contribute to ill health. But leading authorities have determined that dietetic mistakes are responsible for 90% or more of non-mental sickness and disease. The body is sustained thru food, water, and air. It is composed of elements which can be supplied and replenished only from food. Health depends more upon proper food than any other consideration.
The function of the physician should be to teach the science of HEALTH — but as one of our most faithful co-workers expressed it, “We physicians have been kept so busy with patients already sick we haven’t had much time, as yet, to turn our attention to teaching people how to keep well.”
Physical and Spiritual Knowledge Needed
The knowledge of HOW TO LIVE should be the first interest of every person. That knowledge is divided into two phases — the physical, and the spiritual; how to be in vigorous, clear-minded, perfect health, which depends upon the physical laws of nature, and how to live in proper relationship with God and with neighbor, which depends upon the spiritual law summed in the Ten Commandments.
The condition we call “disease” means “dis-ease” — lack of ease. This painful and unhappy condition results in every case from a blocking of some function of the body thru violation of the laws of nature — usually thru destructive habits.
Nearly every physical ailment from which one may suffer is one of two varieties:
(1) The presence of a poison, or, (2) a deficiency or lack of needed elements.
A third impairment is a mechanical dislocation or difficulty.
By far the largest number of sicknesses are caused by the presence of a poison — congestion in the blood-stream. And for this, fasting is often not only an effective, but often the only natural cure.
Fasting is voluntary abstinence from food. The practice is as old as animal life itself. In fact animals fast by instinct when sick.
Christ fasted, and set us an example that we should follow His steps! Moses fasted. So did Daniel, and David, and the Apostle Paul. Christianity teaches control over sensual pleasures and false appetites. Fasting is good spiritual training. Fasting for spiritual benefits may be from one to three days.
How to Fast
Fasting means restriction of, or abstinence from food and drink. As assimilation is retarded, elimination is increased. Under the fasting regime, the body undergoes a “house-cleaning.” Toxins and poisons are rapidly eliminated. By giving the stomach and intestines a rest, normal functioning is re-established. Normal hunger returns, and false appetites are expelled.
Complete results — total elimination of the contributing toxins until the tongue is clear, the breath sweet, and the mouth clean, sometimes require extended fasts of from thirty to ninety days. But definitely I warn you that SUCH LENGTHY FASTS SHOULD NOT BE UNDERTAKEN UNLESS UNDER CONSTANT SUPERVISION OF A PHYSICIAN WHO IS SKILLED IN THE FASTING PROCEDURE. And many medical doctors today, unfortunately, are uneducated in this natural and Biblical method and discourage it or even oppose and ridicule it — altho many world-renowned physicians recommend it.
I have found that in most cases satisfactory results are realized by shorter fasts, or a series of short fasts, especially when followed by proper diet.
Apparently the Bible examples of fasting were complete fasts — no food whatever, and often not even water. This, however, is very rigid and requires real will-power. Perhaps most effective results would be obtained from the total fast — at least with water only, but it has been found in many thousands of cases that fruit-juice fasts bring very beneficial results, and in many instances the fruit-juice diet will prove preferable.
Fasting Is NOT Starvation
Fasting is always the thing to do immediately in the case of a cold or a fever. I am not advising you about milk-fed infants, and in their case refer you to your physician, but in the case of children who eat solid food and all adults, I recommend taking all solid food away from them immediately (including soups). Give them plenty of water to drink, and a glass of orange-juice, grapefruit-juice (fresh-squeezed, not canned), or the juice of one lemon in a glass of water (no sugar) about four times a day — NOTHING ELSE. In the rare case of a person who seems allergic to the citrus Juices (and they should always be FRESH-SQUEEZED and consumed in less than five minutes after squeezing), canned tomato juice may be substituted.
If it is merely a normal cold or fever (and not a disease such as typhoid or scarlet fever), you may find that from one to three days’ fasting is often sufficient to rid the system of it — especially if you start the fasting at the very first sign of the cold or fever, before it becomes fully settled. In most cases the fever will subside quickly. Some fevers, of course, will not.
If the fever should persist after five days, especially in the case of a child, try to find some physician who is sympathetic to the fasting method to supervise you from there on — or begin to feed the child a restricted diet of non-starchy cooked vegetables such as spinach, celery, small string beans, asparagus, summer squash, beet-tops, carrots, small beets, small turnips, zucchini, etc. — or a soup made from these vegetables without any grease, or stewed fruits (without sugar) such as prunes, figs, pears, raisins, apples, apricots — avoiding all starches, such as breads, and all sweets, and greases or oils, and, until fever and cold is gone, all body building foods such as milk, butter, cheese, eggs.
In case a fever rises alarmingly high, take one whole grapefruit, cut it up into six or eight pieces, pour one quart of boiling water over it (rind and all) and let it steep like tea. Then make the patient drink it all — it will require 30 to 60 minutes to be able to consume the entire quart. It will be bitter. Natural organic quinine will steep out of the grapefruit, especially the rind. It is often highly effective.
Never “feed a cold.” This idea came from an old saying of Benjamin Franklin’s — but what he meant was, “IF YOU feed a cold, you WILL have to starve a fever.” Fast immediately for either cold or fever. A fever is a fire to be PUT OUT, not fed! NEVER FEED A COLD OR A FEVER!
You will save needless suffering if you will always remember this.
It is indeed a hopeful sign that the medical fraternity is at last beginning to make an approach toward a real study of foods, diet, and the importance of these to sickness and disease. Some of the greatest physicians have made this chief contributing factor to sickness or health a scientific study; but unfortunately what is called “medical science” as a whole has not made the study of these vital factors it should have. Instead, it has studied medicines and drugs — which are in most cases POISONS, not foods.
In the case of numerous common diseases such as asthma, biliousness, bronchial troubles, catarrh, hay fever, constipation, digestive disorders, heart troubles, obesity, rheumatism, etc., a series of short fasts, not to exceed seven days, will prove helpful. After one such fast, follow a natural body-building diet of NATURAL foods, avoiding the meats forbidden in Leviticus 11, eating only LEAN clean meats, avoiding all fat and greases, all fried foods unless fried in a very small amount of butter, all starches (everything made from white flour), all white sugar and excess sweets. Bread should be toasted until hard clear thru.
Also, be sure to use only WHOLE grains — such as whole wheat, steel-cut oats, brown rice, and get plenty of raw green leafy vegetables (avoiding greasy salad dressings such as one buys at the store), cooked non-starchy vegetables, and fruits. Then, after perhaps a month of building up on this natural diet, take another fast, and repeat until you get good results.
During a fast, some need to take an enema twice a day. A light shower or sponge-bath (never soak in a tub of hot water) at least once a day is very helpful. You will not feel like doing heavy work. Get plenty of rest. Break the fast with a few stewed prunes and two slices of whole-wheat toast, toasted hard clear through. For the second meal, repeat this and add one cooked non-starchy vegetable. Thereafter return to a normal, careful and sensible diet.
In a fruit-juice fast, NEVER take more than one 8-ounce glass of citrus-fruit-juice at a time, and never more frequently than every two and a half or three hours. Three or four times a day is more effective. Drink plenty of water.
Source – October 1954 Good News Magazine