The first principle of a wise life is work. The entire body must work. All its functions must work. Not one of them must be forgotten. Yet, none must be overburdened to depletion. The misuse of any function at all overeating, sexual excesses, overwork will inevitably lead to untimely old age. Rest from work must precede fatigue. It should be used to prevent rather than cure fatigue.
It is very important to pay attention to one’s breathing. One must breathe deeply, so that exhaled air will not be retained in the lungs, and so that the blood will be fully saturated with oxygen. One should remember that oxygen is an important nutrient and a substance that, by a process of oxidation, helps the organism not only to produce heat but also to get rid of the harmful, poisonous waste products of metabolism.
Gueniot calls the lungs, “the true fountain of youth where billions of messengers from the tissues the red blood corpuscles rush in for oxygen.”
Very important for longevity is proper digestion. Food should be wholesome and simple. Many doctors recommend a vegetable diet to older people. However, such a diet is far from being popular. The famous author of “In Praise of Folly,” Erasmus of Rotterdam said: “At heart I am a Catholic, but my stomach is that of a Protestant.” He begged the Pope to absolve him from the necessity of observing the days of fasting. However, there is no doubt that one should avoid too much meat. Proteins are necessary for the replacement of the proteins of the cellular plasm. But they are needed daily for this purpose in only small quantities. Although meat is predominantly protein foodstuff, it is also responsible for the formation of waste products that are not only unwholesome but even harmful when functions of the liver and kidneys are impaired. For this reason, meat should be used in small quantities.
To replace expended energy, it is better to use fats and carbohydrates (Editors note: Fats should be used in small quantities too, and carbohydrates should be complex) that are oxidized in the organism to carbon dioxide and water. It is very harmful to overeat. I will remind you of a French saying: “To get fat,is to get old.”
The bowels should be emptied not less than once every twenty-four hours. This is very important. It is necessary to have proper bowel movements to prevent constipation. A glass of sour milk or a bottle of kefir at night, at the same time regulates the emptying of the bowels and suppresses the harmful bacilli of putrefaction.
Exercise and massage are useful in preventing blood congestion in various parts of the body. One should begin and end the day with them. Ten to twenty minutes daily, not only will add vigor for the rest of the day, but will preserve more than a few years of life. This promotes the exchange of substances between the tissues and the blood; improves the nutrition of the cells, and facilitates the passage of wastes from cells into the blood and from the blood through the kidneys into the urine. Walking for not less than an hour a day is a “must” for those who lead a sedentary life. One should dress lightly but according to the weather. Even Plutarch advised that for the preservation of good health one must keep the head cool and the feet warm, and not be in a hurry to take medicine.
It is essential to keep the skin clean, because the skin is an important organ of exchange…
Sleep is important. Man should sleep seven to eight hours daily, including one hour after the main heavy meal. Sleep brings rest to all of the body’s functions, particularly those of the nervous system. Overtiring this system is harmful for the general welfare of the organism and, if it is prolonged, will lead to an exhaustion, untimely aging and death. Excessive indulgence in drink and tobacco affects the nervous system very badly.
… The fundamental precept of the fight for longevity is avoidance of satiation. One must not lose desires. They are mighty stimulants to creativeness, to love, and to long life.
“Your spine is the switchboard to your nervous system. When the spine becomes misaligned due to jars, jolts, poor posture, or emotional stress, then nerve irritation results. With the presence of nerve irritation, your body becomes vulnerable to illness, pain, and discomfort.” Michael Chimes, Jr., D.C.