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    Educate the Sick

    The first labors of a physician should be to educate the sick and suffering in the very course they should pursue to prevent disease. The greatest good can be done by our trying to enlighten the minds of all we can obtain access to, as to the best course for them to pursue to prevent sickness and suffering, and broken constitutions, and premature death. But those who do not care to undertake work that taxes their physical and mental powers will be ready to prescribe drug medication, which lays a foundation in the human organism for a twofold greater evil than that which they claim to have relieved.MM 221.4

    A physician who has the moral courage to imperil his reputation in enlightening the understanding by plain facts, in showing the nature of disease and how to prevent it, and the dangerous practice of resorting to drugs, will have an uphill business, but he will live and let live.... He will, if a reformer, talk plainly in regard to the false appetites and ruinous self-indulgence, in dressing, in eating and drinking, in overtaxing to do a large amount of work in a given time, which has a ruinous influence upon the temper, the physical and mental powers....MM 222.1

    Right and correct habits, intelligently and perseveringly practiced, will be removing the cause for disease, and the strong drugs need not be resorted to. Many go on from step to step with their unnatural indulgences, which is bringing in just as unnatural [a] condition of things as possible.MM 222.2

    Stimulants and Narcotics

    Diseases of every stripe and type have been brought upon human beings by the use of tea and coffee and the narcotics, opium, and tobacco. These hurtful indulgences must be given up, not only one, but all; for all are hurtful, and ruinous to the physical, mental, and moral powers, and should be discontinued from a health standpoint. The common use of the flesh of dead animals has had a deteriorating influence upon the morals as well as the physical constitution.MM 222.3

    Ill health in a variety of forms, if effect could be traced to the cause, would reveal the sure result of flesh eating. The disuse of meats, with healthful dishes nicely prepared to take the place of flesh-meats, would place a large number of the sick and suffering ones in a fair way of recovering their health, without the use of drugs. But if the physician encourages a meat-eating diet to his invalid patients, then he will make a necessity for the use of drugs....MM 222.4

    Drugs always have a tendency to break down and destroy vital forces, and nature becomes so crippled in her efforts that the invalid dies, not because he needed to die, but because nature was outraged. If she had been left alone, she would have put forth her highest efforts to save life and health. Nature wants none of such help as so many claim that they have given her. Lift off the burdens placed upon her, after the customs of the fashion of this age, and you will see in many cases nature will right herself. The use of drugs is not favorable or natural to the laws of life and health. The drug medication gives nature two burdens to bear, in the place of one. She has two serious difficulties to overcome, in the place of one.MM 223.1

    There is now positive need even with physicians, reformers in the line of treatment of disease, that greater painstaking effort be made to carry forward and upward the work for themselves, and to interestedly instruct those who look to them for medical skill to ascertain the cause of their infirmities. They should call their attention in a special manner to the laws which God has established, which cannot be violated with impunity. They dwell much on the working of disease, but do not, as a general rule, arouse the attention to the laws which must be sacredly and intelligently obeyed to prevent disease.MM 223.2

    The Physician's Example an Educating Influence

    If the physician has not been correct in his dietetic practices, if his own appetite has not been restricted to a plain, wholesome diet, in a large measure discarding the use of the flesh of dead animals, ... he will as soon educate and discipline the taste and appetite of his patients to love the things that he loves, as to give them the sound principles of health reform. He will prescribe for sick patients flesh-meats, when it is the very worst diet that they can have. It stimulates, but does not give strength.MM 223.3

    Nature will want some assistance to bring things to their proper condition, which may be found in the simplest remedies, especially in the use of nature's own furnished remedies—pure air, and with a precious knowledge of how to breathe; pure water, with a knowledge how to apply it; plenty of sunlight in every room in the house if possible, and with an intelligent knowledge of what advantages are to be gained by its use. All these are powerful in their efficiency, and the patient who has obtained a knowledge of how to eat and dress healthfully may live for comfort, for peace, for health, and will not be prevailed upon to put to his lips drugs, which, in the place of helping nature, paralyzes her powers. If the sick and suffering will do only as well as they know in regard to living out the principles of health reform perseveringly, then they will in nine cases out of ten recover from their ailments.MM 223.4

    Obedience to Nature's Laws

    The feeble and suffering ones must be educated line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little, until they will have respect for and live in obedience to the law that God has made to control the human organism. Those who sin against knowledge and light, and resort to the skill of a physician in administering drugs, will be constantly losing their hold on life. The less there is of drug dosing, the more favorable will be their recovery to health. Drugs, in the place of helping nature, are constantly paralyzing her efforts....MM 224.1

    They do not inquire into their former habits of eating and drinking, and take special notice of their erroneous habits which have been for many years laying the foundation of disease. Conscientious physicians should be prepared to enlighten those who are ignorant, and should with wisdom make out their prescriptions, prohibiting those things in their diet which he knows to be erroneous.MM 224.2

    He should plainly state the things which he regards as detrimental to the laws of health, and leave these suffering ones to work conscientiously to do those things for themselves which they can do, and thus place themselves in right relation to the laws of life and health. When from an enlightened conscience they do the very best they know how to do to preserve themselves in health, then in faith they may look to the Great Physician, who is a healer of the body as well as of the soul.MM 224.3

    We are health reformers. Physicians should have wisdom and experience, and be thorough health reformers. Then they will be constantly educating by precept and example their patients from drugs. For they well know that the use of drugs may produce for the time being favorable results, but will implant in the system that which will cause great difficulties hereafter, which they may never recover from during their lifetime. Nature must have a chance to do her work. Obstructions must be removed and opportunity given her to exert her healing forces, which she will surely do, if every abuse is removed from her and she has a fair chance.MM 224.4

    Confidence in Nature's Remedies to be Cultivated

    The sick should be educated to have confidence in nature's great blessings which God has provided; and the most effective remedies for disease are pure soft water, the blessed God-given sunshine coming into the rooms of the invalids, living outdoors as much as possible, having healthful exercise, eating and drinking foods that are prepared in the most healthful manner....MM 225.1

    There are many, many afflicted in our world with tobacco poison.... The physician, if he is not a novice, can trace the effects back to the true cause, but he dares not forbid its use, because he indulges in it himself. Some will in an undecided, halfway manner advise the tobacco users to take less of this narcotic; but they do not say to them, This habit is killing you. They prescribe drugs to cure a disease which is the result of indulging unnatural appetites, and two evils are produced in the place of removing one.MM 225.2

    Thousands need to be educated patiently, kindly, tenderly, but decidedly, that nine tenths of their complaints are created by their own course of action....MM 225.3

    Self-indulgence a Cause of Disease

    Some have not the moral courage to keep right on in the fear of the Lord. There is even among those who have intelligence in regard to the laws of life and health, a constant selfish indulgence in those things which are injurious to both soul and body. There is intemperance in eating and in the many varieties of food taken at one meal. In the preparation of food there are unhealthful mixtures which ferment in the stomach and cause great distress. And yet these go on, continuing their indulgence, which lays the foundation for numerous difficulties. If these would have self-control, and educate their taste to eat only those things which the abused stomach can and will assimilate, they would save large expense in doctor bills and avoid great sufferings....MM 225.4

    It is the work of the physician to educate those who are ignorant in regard to these things. There should be training schools to educate nurses and prepare the minds to sense the danger and to see the importance of bringing in skill and tact in the preparation of foods which shall be substituted for the meat diet. This kind of education will pay in the end. Wisdom should be used not to remove meat all at once from those who have been in the habit of using it, but educate the mind to see the importance of the use of healthful food.—Manuscript 22, 1887.MM 226.1

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