Friday, January 13, 2012

Real Food Wisdom from 100 Years Ago: What We Knew Then & Should Know Now


I enjoyed the post from Food Renegade today and thought it was worth sharing here at TBH. The book "Graded Lessons in Physiology and Hygiene" written by a physician, Dr. William Khron, and used as a textbook in Texas schools in 1908 can actually be found and read online!

I intend to read "Grade Lessons" for sure for myself but enjoyed the amazing & knowledgeable quotes from the book shared in Kristen's post. For example, Dr. Khron shares a list of adulterated foods and his quotes are surprisingly correct for a time less medically knowledgeable. The following quote is just a sample of what Dr. Khron thought about one of these adulterated foods:

“Butter is sometimes made entirely from … cotton-seed oil, to which coloring matter is added to make it look like pure, yellow butter made of rich cream. This product is called butterine, or oleomargarine. It can be sold for about half of what good butter would bring…. In the United States there is a law against the sale ofbutterine that is not stamped to show plainly to the person buying it that it is not genuine butter, but an imitation. Such laws are right in protecting the people against false or counterfeit foods, and in preventing people from being imposed upon” (page 39). 

I grew up eating margarine and remember when I was so stubbornly offended that my mom found out butter was better for us. I didn't want butter... I wanted the fake, tasty stuff. Thankfully I have since changed my mind. 

Check out one more quote from the book and then visit Kristen's awesome blog, Food Renegade, and read the book online for yourself.
“Sugar, syrup, and candy are sometimes made from corn by a peculiar process, by means of which the starch of the corn is changed into glucose, and a kind of sugar not so sweet or healthful as sugar made from sugar-cane or sugar beets. This sugar is quite apt to ferment, or sour, and decay within the bowels, thus causing disease. Some candies are colored with poisonous matter” (page 39).

Can you say yuck?!? Hopefully my day in yogurt making and fermentation experiments pays off. I hope to undo some of the harm of those adulterated foods. 


  1. I made that addictive butter with the olive oil in my vitamix yesterday... that batch is already almost gone. Yes, it was that good. Sigh, we need a cow...

  2. We so need a cow... I NEED to get Wade and myself on raw milk. Sigh.

  3. we have been seriously talking to blake's parents.. hoping they would do the dairy cows too, but probably not... not unless i become a full time farmer. gulp!


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