The Science of Being Well

Then you will be functioning in a perfectly healthy manner, so far as what to eat is concerned. I repeat, if you have no hunger or taste for the plain foods, do not eat at all. Wait until hunger comes. Go without eating until the plainest food tastes good to you, and then begin your meal with what you like best.

In deciding how to eat, a person must be guided by reason. We can see that the abnormal states of hurry and worry produced by wrong thinking about business and similar things have led us to form the habit of eating too fast, and chewing too little.

We know that an angry or distracting atmosphere upsets the process of digestion. Reason tells us that food should be chewed, and that the more thoroughly it is chewed the better it is prepared for the chemistry of digestion.

Furthermore, we can see that the person who eats slowly and chews his food to a liquid, keeping his mind on the process and giving it his undivided attention, will enjoy more of the pleasure of taste than he who bolts his food with his mind on something else.

To eat in a perfectly healthy manner, a person must concentrate his attention on the act with cheerful enjoyment and confidence. He must taste his food, and he must reduce each mouthful to a liquid before swallowing it. The foregoing instructions, if followed, make the function of eating completely perfect. Nothing can be added as to what, when, and how.

In the matter of how much to eat, a person must be guided by the same inward intelligence, or Principle of Health, which tells him when food is wanted.

He must stop eating in the moment that he feels hunger abating; he must not eat beyond this point to gratify taste. If he ceases to eat in the instant that the inward demand for food ceases he will never overeat, and the function of supplying the body with food will be performed in a perfectly healthy manner.

The matter of eating naturally is a very simple one; there is nothing in all the foregoing that cannot be easily practiced by anyone. This method, put into practice, will infallibly result in perfect digestion and assimilation, and all anxiety and careful thought concerning the matter can at once be dropped from the mind. Whenever you have an earned hunger, eat with thankfulness from the variety of natural foods before you, chewing each mouthful to a liquid, and stopping when you feel the edge taken from your hunger.

The importance of the mental attitude is sufficient to justify an additional word.

While you are eating, as at all other times, think only of healthy conditions and normal functioning. Enjoy what you eat. If you carry on a conversation at the table, talk of the goodness of the food, and of the pleasure it is giving you.

Never mention that you dislike this or that. Speak only of those things which you like. Never discuss the wholesomeness or unwholesomeness of foods. Never mention or think of unwholesomeness at all.

If there is anything on the table for which you do not care, pass it by in silence, or with a word of commendation. Never criticize or object to anything.

Eat your food with gladness and with singleness of heart, praising God and giving thanks. Let your watchword be perseverance. Whenever you fall into the old way of hasty eating, or of wrong thought and speech, bring yourself up short and begin again.

It is of the most vital importance to you that you should be a self-controlling and self-directing person, and you can never hope to become so unless you can master yourself in so simple and fundamental a matter as the manner and method of your eating.

If you cannot control yourself in this, you cannot control yourself in anything that will be worthwhile.

On the other hand, if you carry out the foregoing instructions, you may rest in the assurance that in so far as right thinking and right eating are concerned you are living in a perfectly scientific way, and you may also be assured that if you practice what is prescribed in the following chapters you will quickly build your body into a condition of perfect health.


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