Pastry is less objectionable, however, when used in the form of hot bread, &c., than when butter or fat is mixed with it. Then it becomes one of the most indigestible substances in the world. Besides, it not only tries the patience of the stomach, but according to Willich, whose authority ranks high, it tends to produce diseases of the skin, especially a disease which he calls “copper in the face,” and which he pronounces incurable.
I know not whether the eruptions so common on the faces of young people in this country, and especially of young men, are in every instance either produced or aggravated by pastry; but I am very sure of one thing, viz., that those who are in the use of pastry, and have eruptions of the skin of any kind, will not be apt to get well, as long as they continue the use of this objectionable substance.
Physicians are often consulted about eruptions on the face. When they assign the real cause, which is undoubtedly connected with the improper gratification of some of the appetites, in one way or another, it is seldom that the patient has self-command enough to follow his prescription of temperance or abstinence. Mothers, it is yours to prevent this mischief;—first, by establishing correct physical habits; secondly, by teaching your children the great duty of self-denial—not only by precept, but by your own good example.
SEC. 13. Crude or Raw Substances.
I have reserved this section for remarks on certain articles used at our fashionable modern tables, of which I could not well find it convenient to speak elsewhere. And first, of SALADS, and HERBS used in cooking; such as asparagus, artichokes, spinage, plantain, cabbage, dock, lettuce, water-cresses, chives, &c.
Several of these substances are often eaten raw, in which state they are exceedingly indigestible, at the best; and they are rendered still more beyond the reach of the powers of the stomach, by the oil or vinegar which is added to them. Boiled, they are more tolerable; especially asparagus. In the midst, however, of such an abundance of excellent food as this country affords, it is most surprising that anybody should ever take it into their heads to eat such crude substances; and above all, that they should fill children’s stomachs with them. What child, with an unperverted appetite, would not prefer a good ripe apple, or peach, or pear, to the most approved raw salads?—and a good baked one, to the best boiled asparagus?
NUTS, in general, are probably made for other animals rather than man; though of this we cannot in the present infancy of human knowledge be quite certain. But if any of them were intended, by the Creator, for man, it is the chesnut; and this should be boiled. Boiled chesnuts are used as food, in many parts of southern Europe; and to a very considerable extent.
SPICES, as they are sometimes called, such as nutmeg, mace, pepper, pimento; cubebs, cardamoms, juniper berries, ginger, calamus, cloves, cinnamon, caraway, coriander, fennel, parsley, dill, sage, marjoram, thyme, pennyroyal, lavender, hyssop, peppermint, &c., are unfit for the human stomach—above all in infancy—except as medicines.