Andrew Lang.

Northern Nut Growers Association Report of the Proceedings at the Twenty-Fifth Annual Meeting online

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a generation, and especially since the World War, there has been a
notable change in the national bill of fare.

More cereals are consumed than formerly, but the greatest per capita
increase is shown in the consumption of fruits and vegetables, and
especially greenstuffs, such as lettuce, spinach, kale, and other
greens. This increase in the use of certain foods is not due to the fact
that the American appetite is increasing or the American stomach
enlarging, but to the spread among the people of scientific information
concerning nutrition.

Through experiments upon rats and various other animals, including man
himself, fundamental principles have been discovered and a real science
of nutrition has been developed, the axioms, formulae, and basic ideas
of which are as clearly established as are those of geometry and
chemistry. We are no longer left to be led astray by guess-work or fancy
in supplying our nutritive needs, and have verified the truth so aptly
expressed by that shrewd old Roman philosopher, Seneca, who said, "There
is nothing against which we ought to be more on our guard than, like a
flock of sheep, following the crowd of those who preceded us."

This change in the eating habits of the American people has been brought
about by disillusionment respecting the importance of meats. Fifty years
ago, every physiologist taught that the liberal consumption of meat was
essential. This idea was based, first, upon the supposition that
protein, the chief constituent of lean meat, is the most important
source of energy; and, second, the belief that food of animal origin is
better adapted to human sustenance than plant foods, through having
undergone a process of refinement and concentration in the
transformation from plant to animal. Modern studies of nutrition have
shown that both these ideas are without scientific basis.

Unfortunately for the nut-growing industry, and still more unfortunately
for the American people, the claims of nuts to consideration in this
re-adjustment of the bill of fare have been generally overlooked, and it
seems evident that the only hope for the nut industry lies in the
creation of a larger demand for these nutrients from the plant world by
acquainting the public with their superlative merits. Of course, room
must be made for the increased intake of nuts by lessened consumption of
something which nuts may advantageously replace in the bill of fare.
Most nuts consist almost exclusively of proteins and fat. Proteins and
fats likewise are almost the sole constituents of meat. Nuts are thus
the vegetable analogues of meat and are competitors for a place on the
bill of fare.

Physiologists are agreed that the American people are eating too much
meat, and it is the general spread of this conviction that has lessened
the consumption of flesh foods in this country and has crippled the
packing industry.

A few years ago, the meat packers, finding that the consumption of meat
had fallen off nearly one-fourth since the beginning of the century,
began a vigorous campaign of publicity to increase the demand for their
products. A special board was established for the purpose and through
the activities of this board an enormous amount of misinformation has
been broadcasted which has influenced a number of people to "eat more
meat to save the live stock industry," to use the packers' appealing
slogan and incidentally to help the packing industry, and there has
been some increase in the use of pork, although the falling off in the
consumption of beef has continued in spite of unscrupulous efforts to
deceive and mislead the people, to their injury.

The two greatest obstacles in the way of the nut growing industry are
the ignorance of the people with respect to the value of nuts as staple
foods and the frantic efforts being made by those interested in the meat
industry to increase the demand for their products.

A counter campaign of education is needed to set before the people the
true facts as revealed by modern chemical and bacteriological research,
by the discoveries of nutrition laboratories and by the clinical
observations of thousands of eminent clinicians.

The false claims for meat must be met, for it is only by lessening the
consumption of meat that room can be made for the dietetic use of nuts.
Here are some of the errors that should be corrected.

Claim 1

That meat is an essential food staple, and that without it there would
result loss of vitality and of individual and racial stamina.

No respectable physiologist will support this claim today, although half
a century ago all physiologists held these now obsolete views.

Claim 2

That flesh foods are necessary for blood building, especially red meats,
because of their iron content.

This claim is wholly without scientific support. Modern experiments have
shown that anemic animals recover most quickly on a diet rich in plant
iron. Green foods have been proven to be sources of the best iron, which
is associated with chlorophyl.

The iron of meat has been once used and is of the same sort as that
which the body throws away. It is inferior to the iron of green plants,
from which the ox makes his red blood.

Nuts contain a rich store of this precious plant iron, as do also beans.

Claim 3

That beef and other flesh meats are muscle and strength builders par

This claim no longer has scientific support. Sugar is fuel of the body
engine. When the butcher's daughter, Gertrude Ederle, failed in her
first attempt to swim the English Channel, she very justly charged her
collapse before reaching the English shore to the mutton stew her
trainer gave her before starting. When in a second attempt, she adopted
my suggestion through a mutual acquaintance, to eat sugar instead of
meat, she made a world record. This practice is, I believe, now adopted
by all successful channel swimmers.

Non-flesh eaters are far superior to meat-eaters in endurance under
special strains.

When Dempsey defeated the Argentinean giant, he had trained on modest
allowances of meat and his last meal had consisted of vitamin-rich fresh
vegetables, while Firpo loaded himself up with steaks and chops.

When Battling Nelson lost his championship, he explained to a newspaper
reporter, "'Twas the beefsteak that done it. I swiped an extra beefsteak
when my trainer was not looking, and it made me tired."

De Lesseps, the famous French engineer, became a confirmed and
enthusiastic flesh abstainer when he found his sturdy beef-fed
Englishmen could not compete in work on the Suez Canal with the Arab
laborers, who subsisted on wheat bread and onions, as did the builders
of the pyramids, according to Herodotus, 5,000 years before. He
declared, in fact, that without the hardy Arabs, he could not have done
the work.

Theodore Roosevelt, in his story of his East Africa hunting expedition,
said in Scribners Magazine that a horse with a heavy man on his back
could always run down a lion fleeing for his life in a mile and a half.

Claim 4

That a man can live on a flesh or muscle meat diet such as chops and

The famous pedestrian, Weston, informed me that on his long walks, he
never ate meat and on his walk across the continent lived on corn flakes
and milk.

Carl Mann, a grocer's clerk not professionally trained, competing in a
government supervised walking race from Dresden to Berlin, 123 miles,
against the picked pedestrians of the German army and several
professionals, won easily on a fleshless diet consisting of nuts and
fresh vegetables which he pulled out of the vegetable gardens as he
hurried by. The only protein he ate was derived from nuts.

The Tarahumari Indians of Mexico are the most tireless runners in the
world. Their ancestors were the dispatch runners of Montezuma in
pre-Colombian days, and they still adhere to the simple plant regimen of
their forbears.

At the time of the Boxer uprising in China some years ago, the rice-fed
Japanese were the first to arrive of the military representatives of
numerous nations who raced to the rescue of the foreign embassies
besieged by the fanatical and bloodthirsty Boxers.

Claim 5

That a man can live and enjoy good health for a year or many years on a
purely flesh or muscle-meat diet.

The packers' much heralded Stefansson stunt of living a year on an
exclusive meat diet was a discreditable fake. Stefansson did not live on
a meat diet, but on a diet consisting of one-fifth protein and
four-fifths fat (caloric intake). When compelled against his protest to
eat steaks and chops, he was made very ill with acidosis within two
days, vomiting and purging so violently that he was compelled to make a
complete and immediate change. Prof. Newburgh of our State University
stated that Stefansson ate no more real muscle meat than the average man
usually eats. The Stefansson experiment proved but one thing, namely,
that a man even when accustomed to a meat diet, cannot live on lean meat
alone for more than two days without becoming ill.

Dr. Newburgh produced nephritis, or acute inflammation of the kidneys,
in rats by feeding them exclusively on meat for a few weeks.

Claim 6

That Eskimos thrive on a meat diet.

Captain McMillan who accompanied Peary on his discovery of the North
Pole, a year or two ago informed me that the Eskimo is short lived. That
he becomes at 50 years very old and useless and at 55 infirm and
helpless, and rarely lives to the age of 60 years.

The Arctic traveler Stefansson said to me, "I do not claim to have
proven that a man can live better or longer on a flesh diet, but only
that he can live. Of course the scientific argument is against such a

Prof. Irving Fisher of Yale University some years ago made a series of
endurance tests in which the endurance of the athletes of the Yale
gymnasium was compared with that of physicians and men nurses of the
Battle Creek Sanitarium. As Prof. Fisher said in his report, which was
published in the Yale Scientific Review, the endurance of the Battle
Creek flesh-abstainers was found to be not only "greater" in all the
tests, but far greater. In the arm holding (arms extended sidewise)
tests, the Battle Creek men held their arms out longer than any Yale man
and nine times as long as the same number of Yale men.

Vegetarian bicyclists have for many years held all the championships in
endurance riding tests from Land's End to John O'Groats.

Through Finland's minister to the United States I have learned that
Nurmi, the Finnish runner whose record stands unequalled, was trained on
a non-flesh dietary.

The Great War taught the world among many other important lessons, the
fact that meat may be dispensed with not only without injury, but with
great and very definite benefits.

During the World War, Denmark sold her cattle to Germany and reduced her
meat ration to a very low minimum, with the result that her death rate
was reduced one-third.

In Germany, where at the beginning of the war the cattle were killed to
save food and a practically meatless ration was maintained for more than
three years, diabetes, Bright's disease, and many other chronic maladies
were reduced in frequency to an extraordinary degree. After the war, as
I was informed by the medical director of one of the largest life
insurance companies in this country, it was discovered that the death
losses among the company's German policy holders, not excepting war
casualties, were far below the prewar average.

The Chittenden standard now universally accepted, fixes the protein
intake at 10 per cent of the total ration. This leaves little room for
meat, and not a few authorities reduce the protein to a still lower

For some years, McCollum of Johns Hopkins has been calling attention to
the evils of the "meat and bread" diet, which he declares to be about
the worst diet one can adopt, and adds, "We could entirely dispense with
meats without suffering any ill effects whatever."

Chalmers Watson of Edinburgh found that rats on a lean meat diet
deteriorated so rapidly that after two or three generations they became
deformed and dwarfed and ceased to reproduce.

The International Scientific Food Commission appointed by the Allies at
the time of the Great War and charged with the duty of fixing the
minimum ration of different food essentials, declared it to be
unnecessary to fix a minimum meat ration, "in view of the fact that no
absolute physiological need exists for meat, since the proteins of meat
can be replaced by other proteins of animal origin, such as those
contained in milk, cheese and eggs, as well as by proteins of vegetable

It is evident from the above facts that an effort to induce the American
people to eat less meat and more nuts would do no harm and should prove
substantially beneficial.

A leading textbook on "Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics" by Carter, Howe
and Mason of Columbia University, calls attention to the encouraging
fact that "Of late there has been a distinct reaction in the meat-eating
of the wealthier classes, and one sees less meat and more vegetable
habits as they progress upward in the scale of civilization. Also, on
account of their sedentary habits, people find that the ingestion of
considerable quantities of animal protein, with the consequent increase
in intestinal putrefaction, gives rise to symptoms of toxemia, which
have assumed a very definite place in the pathology of disease."

That meat enormously increases intestinal putrefaction cannot be
questioned. It is this fact which makes the difference between the
excreta of a dog or lion and that of a cow or horse. All carnivorous
animals suffer from autointoxication.

The eminent pathologist of the Philadelphia Zoo states that all dogs
over three years of age have hardened arteries, while horses practically
never show arterial changes even when very old.

Dr. Charles Mayo states that three out of four dogs over 12 years have

I quote the following paragraphs from a poster prepared some years ago
as a reply to "Meat Is Wholesome" poster distributed by the packers
through the post office department which presents ample evidence that
meat is by no means always wholesome:

A bacteriological examination made in the laboratory of the Battle Creek
Sanitarium of fresh meats purchased at seven different markets, all in
apparently fresh condition, showed the following number of bacteria per

Bacteria Per Ounce
Beefsteak 37,500,000- 45,000,000
Pork Chops 5,100,000- 87,000,000
Beef Liver 3,000,000- 945,000,000
Corned Beef 300,000- 910,000,000
Hamburger Steak 5,100,000-2,250,000,000
Pork Liver 3,000,000-2,862,000,000

The above figures agree with the findings of Tissier, Distaso, Weinzirl,
Farger, Walpole, and other bacteriological authorities.

The Fresh Droppings of Animals

Bacteria Per Ounce
Calf 450,000,000
Horse 750,000,000
Goat 2,070,000,000
Cow 2,400,000,000
Oyster Juice 102,000,000

The bacteria in meats are identical in character with those of manure,
and are more numerous in some meats than in fresh manure. All meats
become infected with manure germs in the process of slaughtering, and
the number increases the longer the meat is kept in storage.

Ordinary cooking does not destroy all of the germs of meat.

The importance of suppressing this intestinal putrefaction is becoming
more and more evident as medical investigation and discoveries are
continually bringing out new facts which show an intimate relation
between intestinal poisons and many chronic maladies, including gall
bladder disease, high blood pressure, heart disease which kills 300,000
Americans annually, Bright's disease, insanity and premature senility.
Many physicians are on this account saying daily to patients, "Eat less
meat." "Cut out beefsteak and chops," and "Change your intestinal flora
so as to clear your coated tongue and eliminate the poison that taints
your breath."

Nuts have the great advantage that although richer in protein than is
meat, they are much less putrescible. Fresh meats are practically always
in a state of putrefaction when eaten while nuts are delivered to us by
the generous hand of Nature in aseptic packages, ready to eat, and
presenting pure nutriment in the most condensed and refined form known
to science. Fresh meats are always contaminated with colon and
putrefactive germs with which they become contaminated in the
slaughtering process. If flesh is to be used as food, animals should be
killed with the same antiseptic precautions which are employed in modern
surgery. This is never done, and within a few days after killing, the
flesh of a slaughtered animal is swarming with colon germs, and when
long kept for use of hotels and many restaurants, is covered with a
beard of green mold. Such food is fit only for scavengers. Hamburger
steak and pork liver often contain more manure germs than the fresh
droppings of animals.

The liberal substitution of nuts for meats would save billions annually.

According to Prof. Baker, of the Department of Agriculture, fully 80 per
cent of the total feed and food products in the United States is
consumed by live stock. Most of these animals are consumed as food.

The enormous loss involved is shown by the fact that 100 pounds of
digestible foodstuffs are required to produce 3 pounds of beef.

According to an announcement by the United States Bureau of Statistics,
the per capita annual cost of meat in the United States is more than
$80.00, which totals for the whole population nearly $10,000,000,000 per

Prof. Baker suggests that the annual per capita consumption of meat
might without injury be reduced from the present 170 pounds to fifty
pounds, which would make a saving of $6,000,000,000 at least, for
$1,000,000,000 would easily supply from nuts and other plant sources
more than enough food to replace the discarded meats.

The general belief that nuts are an expensive food is an error. When a
man pays a dollar for three pounds of steak, he is probably not aware of
the fact that three-fourths of what he buys is simply water, so that the
actual solid nutriment purchased amounts to not more than three-quarters
of a pound, making the actual cost of the water-free food $1.33 per

Two pounds of almonds or other nut meats which might be purchased at the
same cost, would yield twice as much and better food.

If the whole beef industry were wiped out, the country would be the

What the nut industry needs most is a campaign of education to tell the
American public about the superior values of nuts and to correct the
errors broadcasted by the Meat Board. The public must not only be taught
the value of nuts as set forth in Mr. Russell's admirable book, but
should be encouraged by government aid to plant nut trees on barren
mountain sides and areas devastated by lumbering operations. If every
lumberman had been required by law to plant a nut tree for every ten
timber trees cut down during the last 50 years, a food source would have
been provided which would insure more than an ample supply of precious
protein and satisfying fat to feed 120,000,000 of Americans if the
cereal food crops were destroyed by a drouth or predatory insects.

If nut trees were planted along all our highways and railway
thoroughfares, a food crop would be produced of greater nutrient value
than that yielded at the present time by the entire live stock industry.

That an educational campaign may be made to succeed was shown by the
experience of the raisin producers of California.

Some years ago, when the raisin industry was prostrate, I received a
letter from the secretary of an association organized for the purpose of
trying to revive the industry, asking for information concerning the
food value of raisins. I called attention to the fact that the raisin is
rich in food iron and a good source for this food mineral and suggested
that if the people were made acquainted with this fact through a broad
advertising campaign, the demand for this delectable fruit might be
greatly increased. "Have you eaten your iron?" soon appeared in the
newspapers throughout the land, and the raisin farmers of California
found it necessary to enlarge their vineyards.

A discouraging feature of the nut industry to beginners is the long time
required to bring trees to bearing. On this account, it seems to me that
state and federal governments should lend the industry a helping hand. I
would suggest that this association should instruct its president and
secretary to make an earnest effort to persuade state and federal
governments to give more attention to the planting of nut trees in their
reforesting operations.

A broad belt of nut trees running the length of the great timberline
which is to be created for the protection of the western states from a
recurrence of drouth, might prove a more dependable protection to our
food supply than the possible effect of a narrow strip of woodland upon
the country's climate.

I append a table which shows the high food value of nuts as compared
with other common foods. One pound of walnut meats equals in food value
each of the following:

Beef loin, lean 4.00
Beef ribs, lean 6.50
Beef neck, lean 9.50
Veal 5.50
Mutton leg, lean 4.20
Ham, lean 3.00
Fowls 4.00
Chicken, broilers 10.00
Red Bass 25.00
Trout 4.80
Frog's legs 15.00
Oysters 13.50
Lobsters 22.00
Eggs 5.00
Milk 9.50
Evaporated cream 4.00


I am sure everyone feels that the trip here would be worth while if we
didn't receive another bit of information but your paper, and they would
really like to develop some kind of an ailment so that they could place
themselves under your care.


About five years ago I spent a few hours here in Battle Creek, largely
as a guest of Dr. Kellogg over at his home. While I was there he
introduced me to quite a variety of soy bean products and he rather
disturbed me by telling me that beans had much the same food values as
nuts. He reminded me that you could grow a crop of beans every year. You
can't be sure of doing that with nut trees. He gave me an economic idea
to think about. I wonder if he has anything to say about beans now. Are
beans going to supplant nuts?


I confess that it seems to me, from a practical and economic standpoint,
that the soy bean is a very strong rival of the nut industry. I would
like to inquire how many acres are at the present time planted in nuts.
How many acres have been added in the last twenty years? There are, at
the present time, more than 3,000,000 acres of soy beans being planted
every year. It has only been a short time since they were first
introduced and there are more being planted every year.

I believe that the government ought to take an interest in this matter
of nut tree planting, for I believe that is the best way in which it can
be promoted. I have for several years been trying to find someone who
has made a fortune out of raising nuts but I have not yet found such a
man. I believe, however, that it is a veritable gold mine of value but
will have to have governmental aid. I think the government should
require all of these slaughtering lumbermen to plant nut trees in the
place of the trees they are cutting down.


The nut tree is one of the things that will make the boys and girls of
the farm love their homes. In a few years boys and girls will be going
back to a beautiful farm, not to pig pens, but where there are beautiful

Nut Culture Work of the Living Tree Guild


The Living Tree Guild appreciates the privilege of presenting a paper at
the silver anniversary convention of the Northern Nut Growers'
Association. We feel in a humble mood when talking to you. We are new
comers in the field and the work we have done in furthering interest in
the subject of northern nut culture is only taking what you have created
and endeavoring to make it intelligible and useful to the public. It is
something which arouses our enthusiasm. We have great faith in the value
of planting grafted nut trees in the North. This new resource for
beautifying and making idle land productive is no longer restricted to
this small group of nut culturists, but it is now practical, for anyone

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Online LibraryAndrew LangNorthern Nut Growers Association Report of the Proceedings at the Twenty-Fifth Annual Meeting → online text (page 3 of 15)