What About Children's Food?
( Originally Published 1930's )
Every mother in America has an opportunity to give her child a priceless heritage; abundant health and a long life. All that any mother need do is to teach her child to like every kind of food that the good earth produces. Mothers should forget the fancy menus which most nutritionists concoct to satisfy a jaded appetite, or to prove cooking skill.
Science is just beginning to find out that the lack of proper food is a cause for actual disease. It is not just a BELIEF; it is a FACT, emblazoned upon the faces of mankind by misery.
Do you want your child to pass out of this world at the age of fifty-five? Then let that child refuse to eat anything but bread, meat, potatoes, and sweet concoctions. You have assured the undertaker an early job.
Your babies should be fed according to your physician's direction, but when they begin to select their own food, or reject it, it is time for you mothers to direct the child's eating, and you should know how to do it.
Do not introduce a new food in large amounts. Give a very little for the first taste. If the child turns up a nose, or pushes your hand away, let the food alone until something else has been eaten. Then try a little of the new food. If the next attempt fails, mix a little of the new food with something the child likes. Be careful; be slow; but be sure that you teach your child to like the food which is disliked, no matter how long it takes.
If your child dislikes tomato juice, put a few drops in his milk. Keep adding a very little tomato juice to milk quite often, until you can make his face show a smile when taking pure tomato juice.
Mothers are quite prone to give their children the food they, themselves, like. If you mothers could know that a great number of deficiencies, even diseases, are handed down to children by food selection, you would exercise great care in seeing that your children learn to like every kind of food. That arthritis, that gall-bladder trouble, that chronic constipation, is not hereditary. Children develop these diseases which their parents and grandparents have had; not from heredity, but from the fact that they have been taught to eat the SAME THINGS.
If you mothers will refer back to the diseases which are produced by NOT EATING certain foods, you will not make the mistake that your own mother made, by teaching your child to eat ONLY what you like.
That eczema, those skin blotches, that persistent rash, all, are due to too much milk with only mashed potatoes and gravy, or other soft starch foods, which seemed to be easy to feed a child. Do not do it! Teach your child to eat every kind of food, even those things you do not like.
Starch and fat foods furnish energy. Protein foods furnish muscle cell development. Mineral foods supply bone and connective tissue. Tart fruits furnish the needed alkali to cause the chemical changes in all other types of food. Your child must have ALL varieties of food. Vitamins, aminos, and minerals are all obtained from food, if the food contains enough variety.
No mother should neglect adding tart fruits to her child's diet. However, such a thing happens far too often. There is no excuse for not furnishing some type of sour food; not even poverty. If orange, grapefruit, are out of season; tomatoes cost too much; there is always vinegar which can be added to lettuce, spinach, or even the lowly cabbage. Any one of these mentioned sour foods will furnish enough alkali to aid the chemical changes necessary to the absorption of all other food values.
Too many nutritionists spend their pages and time in telling you mothers what weight and what height your child should be at such and such an age. Or, how many calories of food you should feed your child per day. However, that kind of formula can not be depended upon too much. The easy going, small boned child, can not be expected to eat like a draft horse; nor can the rampaging, large boned child, be expected to piece, and eat like a sparrow. Muscle, bone, and tissue must be made, but a healthy child will make it without a mother's worry if she will give him plenty to eat, and a big variety, of food.
Given a variety of good food, any child, who becomes sick, needs a physician's care. Gorged with heavy foods, mostly sweets and pastries, any child, who becomes sick, needs castor oil. Re-member, milk, fruits, vegetables, and nourishing soups will correct most of the illness of childhood when there is no contageous disease.
There is another fact which you mothers should never forget: the man, or women, who reaches the age of eighty or more years, cannot name three foods which they dislike. It is the duty of every mother to see that her child gets a chance for a long and healthy life. What a child DOES NOT eat hurts him, and what he WILL NOT eat shortens his life.
Had the men and women of today been fed every food which nature grows, they would not be taking vitamins, aminos, and minerals, trying to gain or hold their health now. Most assuredly food has a lot to do with disease.