Pellagra (hook-worm or Lombardy Leprosy) is, according to the tenets of the Regular School, an endemic skin and spinal disease of Southern Europe. It is said to be due to eating damaged corn but dependent also upon bad hygienic conditions, poor food and exposure to the sun. Its salient features are weakness, debility, digestive disturbance, spinal pain, convulsions, melancholia and idiocy.
More recent investigation has judged it to be a deficiency disease, due to low and unvaried diet and consequent failure of metabolism.
In every case these climatic disease forms are caused by a combination of hot air, lacking oxygen, and evaporated water, including Cholera which also varies in intensity according to heat conditions.
Cholera and Plague originate on the coast of Bengal, India, where conditions are bad enough of themselves without the apology of the illusive bacillus as a causative agent.
That Cholera is contagious cannot be doubted and it is no superstition that fear predisposes thereto. For all emotions consume electrical power in the body and thus break down its power of resistance.
Infantile paralysis, Typhoid-fever, Small-pox, etc., are dealt with elsewhere and therefore need no mention here.
It is impossible to deal adequately with so wide a subject within the narrow limits at my disposal; but the full details and environment of each, together with the respective methods of treatment will be found in detail in the parent work “Regeneration or Dare to be Healthy.”
In any attempt to unravel the tangled skein of cause and circumstance which surrounds the subject of the world-sweeping pandemic which masquerades under the misleading title of the “Spanish Influenza,” the first and most important initial step must be a keen and careful sifting of the facts and forces, natural and artificial, which control or dominate the situation.
The debatable questions appear to be chiefly the following:
(1) The fundamental
causes that underlie the great-epidemics or
pandemics that the world experiences from time to time—the present
one in particular.
(2) The fact or fallacy
of the germ as a causative factor or merely
an effect or product of disease conditions.
(3) The alternative
course, origin and medium of transmission and
(4) The soundness and efficiency or otherwise of the preventive and curative measures with which the combined intelligence of the Medical Faculty has risen to the dire emergency of the moment for the protection of the people who have relied so confidently, as by law compelled, upon the standard of their acumen and official aid as competent guardians of public safety.
The findings, as to the first question, are to the effect that it appears, from the earliest recorded annals of disease, that epidemics corresponding to the present outbreak have occurred at irregular periods all up the centuries under names and conditions peculiar to the times, and following usually in the wake of some great social cataclysm, strain or upheaval, the result of wars, persecutions, famines and distress—causes which clearly illustrate the close reactive connection between the mental and physical action of disease.