The Art of Living in Australia ; eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 421 pages of information about The Art of Living in Australia ;.
to speak on these matters, observing that fish is an important article of food.  For, as he proceeds to point out, the health and vigour of the inhabitants of the fishing towns, where fish may form the only kind of animal food consumed, show that it is capable of contributing, in an effective manner, to the maintenance of the body under active conditions of life.  Dr. Horace Dobell, too, tells us how nearly fish represents in food value as equal weight of meat, and how important it is to other forms of animal food as a mixed diet.  Indeed, it would be possible to adduce similar statements to an indefinite extent, but my main object in making these references is to call attention to the value of fish as ordinary diet.  And although it hae an every-day value of this kind, there are in addition certain qualities ascribed to fish which render it particularly appropriate for a large and important section of our population.

I refer to the brain workers.  I say large and important, because in their ranks are to be found literary men and journalists, members of the professions, active-minded, busy men of the commercial world, and the vast array of those having mental work and clerical occupations.  In one of the latest books on the subject of food and diet by Dr. Burney Yeo, he remarks that it is the custom to speak of fish as an “intellectual” or “brain” food, on account of the phosphorus contained in it.  But he adds that much of its reputation in this respect may be due to its being readily digested by persons of sedentary and studious habits.  He proceeds to quote Louis Agassiz, the famous naturalist, who bestows upon fish the following:—­“Refreshing to the organism, especially for intellectual labour; not that its use can turn an idiot into a wise or witty man, but a fish diet cannot be otherwise than favourable to brain development.”

But if fish is thus a necessary and desirable element in the dietary of our active daily life, it is not to be forgotten that it is at least equally valuable for the invalid.  It is often tolerated by the stomach when the digestive powers are weakened from any cause.  When the system is recruiting after any exhausting illness, it is usually amongst the earliest forms of nourishment allowed.  In many chronic disorders, likewise, it is just one of those things whose place it would be impossible to fill.  And, lastly, it should be ever remembered that many men whose lives are passed in a state of perfect thraldom by reason of their extravagant use of butcher’s meat would find themselves better in health, better in spirits, and better in temper, were they to curtail their allowance, substituting fish in its place.

CHAPTER XI.

ON SALADS; SALAD PLANTS AND HERBS; AND SALAD MAKING.

“A salad is A delicacy which the poorest of us ought always to command.”

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The Art of Living in Australia ; from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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