By Harry Benjamin N.D.
Compiled and edited by Ivor Hughes  


Acid stomach�Appendicitis � Cancer�Cholera� Colic� Colitis � Constipation�Diarrhoea�Dilatation of the stomach � Dropped stomach � Duodenal ulcer � Dysentery � Dyspepsia � Enteric fever�Fissure of anus�Fistula� Flatulence � Gastric catarrh � Gastric ulcer�Gastritis (Acute)�Gastritis (Chronic) � Hemorrhoids (Piles)� Heartburn � Hyperacidity � Indigestion (Acute) � Indigestion (Chronic) � Intestinal catarrh � Loss of appetite � Ptomaine poisoning�Typhoid.

When we consider that all the food we eat has to be dealt with in that part of the human organism known as the alimentary canal, then the reason for the great prevalence of diseases of the stomach and intestines will be at once apparent, for the alimentary canal is made up principally of the stomach, or food-bag, and the intestines. We eat primarily in order that we may live, but the modern world has almost lost sight of this most elementary fact. With a great number of people nowadays it is a question of living in order that they may eat; and even if this is not actually the case with others, the eating of food has become an habitual matter, a matter dictated solely by routine, and bearing no relationship whatsoever to the direct needs of the body, which it is the true and primary function of food to sub serve.

It can be accepted as a fact that the average person to-day eats two or three times as much food as his body really requires, especially sedentary workers. (All this without any reference as to whether the food is really good food, as measured by Natural-Cure standards.) The inevitable result is that the organs most affected by this persistent influx of food�the stomach and intestines�are perpetually at a disadvantage where normalcy of condition and tone are concerned. They are ever on the brink of breaking down under the continuous strain imposed upon them by their blissfully ignorant owners, who go on eating their four or five meals a day, year in and year out, in the fond belief�fostered by those in medical and social authority� that the more food they eat the better is it for their future health and strength !

This is hardly the place to enter into a full discussion of present-day food fallacies, it has all been gone into thoroughly in the author's book Your Diet in Health and Disease; but the upshot of modern food habits and theories is to land the peoples of present-day civilisation with a variety and accumulation of diseases of the organs of digestion and elimination such as no previous period in history can equal. (The advertisements for " cures " for indigestion and constipation that appear in never-ending succession in every newspaper and periodical one picks hold of more than bear out this statement, if the reader's own experience with family and friends does not already bear it out to the full.)

Now, what steps does the medical profession take to deal with this inordinate amount of disease of the stomach and intestinal tract ? We find that its treatment resolves itself down to one of palliation pure and simple. No attempt is made to get down to the real cause of the trouble�the extravagant amounts of food habitually eaten, and in all kinds of unwise combinations�but the patient is merely given medicine to help overcome the immediate symptoms of his complaint, and that is all. Has any sufferer from indigestion or constipation ever been cured�really cured�by medical treatment ? These diseases, simple as they are, are quite incurable by orthodox medical methods of treatment, simply because the real underlying cause of the condition, wrong feeding, is not affected in the slightest by it. (Dietetic treatment, of a kind, is attempted in certain cases of stomach and bowel trouble, but this is always secondary to the drug treatment employed, and is of no real curative value, as it is entirely unrelated to any of the principles of rational dietetics.)

In no section of disease is the medical record so poor and ineffectual as is its record for the treatment of diseases of the kind we are discussing in the present section ; and conversely, in no section of disease is the Natural-Cure record so bright and shining as is its record for the treatment of these same diseases. Why ? Simply because in the natural treatment the real cause of the trouble is recognised and removed ; whilst in the medical treatment the real cause is ignored or neglected, and the regimen is turned merely towards the end of getting rid of superficial symptoms.

The patient suffering from stomach or bowel trouble, who has been taking medicines for years, often finds himself on the operating-table eventually as a result thereof. And does this last desperate attempt to get rid of his ailment cure him ? It patches him up perhaps for a time, only to leave him all the more a chronic invalid thereafter in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred. And this because the only factor which can really turn the scale�the food factor�is persistently neglected all the time. Look at it in whichever way you will, there is no possible hope for the sufferer from stomach or intestinal trouble who leaves himself in medical hands. His symptoms may be masked and palliated for a time ; drug treatment and operations may lead him to think that he is getting over his trouble ; but in the end he will have to face the blunt fact that he is definitely worse off in health (both as regards the actual trouble he is being treated for and general health too) than when he first came under treatment. His only pathway to cure �to real and permanent cure�lies along natural lines. These, and these only�as results more than prove.

Having given the sufferer from stomach or bowel trouble this assurance that under natural treatment his health can�in whole or in great part�be restored in the majority of cases, even if he has spent years vainly seeking for cure at the hands of orthodox medicine, we can now proceed to outline the actual treatments themselves. The results obtained will be more than gratifying.

Acid Stomach.�See Hyperacidity.

Appendicitis. � We are all accustomed to hearing of people " suddenly " developing appendicitis, and being rushed off to the hospital for an immediate operation, and their lives thus saved. But if one knows something about the inside workings of these matters, the facts are not quite as they appear to be.

The modern medical craze for removing appendices almost rivals that for the removal of enlarged tonsils ; and many people accept an appendicitis operation as something more or less inevitable, and feel quite in the fashion thereby. But if the medical profession would delve a little more deeply into the causes of appendicitis than it now does, and realise how inevitably appendix trouble is linked up with bowel sluggishness and constipation, it might hesitate a little before condemning its appendicitis patients out of hand to the knife, and imagining that it is bringing them back to sound health thereby. It might; but I very much doubt it even then. For the medical outlook is so befogged by the germ theory of disease that when it comes to a question of following out the various disease-processes through all their various stages of cause and effect, the medical mind seems quite incapable of the task.

Appendicitis is not something which attacks you suddenly out of thin air, as it were, as a result of germ infection. That is merely a cock-and-bull story invented by the medical profession to hide its own colossal and complete ignorance as to the real causes of the trouble. No sufferer from appendicitis caught his disease " out of the blue." It was the direct outcome of a toxic bowel condition which has its origins far back in the patient's medical history, and the habitual taking of Aperient medicines has more to do with its development than most people would care to realise.

The appendix is a small organ or structure placed at the very beginning of the large intestine (or colon), and any extensive accumulation of waste matter in the colon over a period of time can lead to the development of appendicitis, which disease is nothing more than an attempt on the part of Nature to localise and " burn up " the toxins in question. (Inflammation of the bowel lining, due to the habitual taking of Aperient drugs, is a most potent predisposing factor in the setting up of appendicitis.) It is quite true that when the appendix is affected there is germ activity present, but this is the result of the condition, not the cause ! (Just the same as when there is an accumulation of filth in a dustbin, all sorts of parasites seem to appear automatically. They are not the cause of the filth surely ? They are merely developed there as the outcome of the presence of the filth.)

When the appendicitis sufferer realises that his trouble is due to past wrong living�for constipation and bowel sluggishness are the direct outcome of wrong feeding habits, plus enervation of the system �he will have made a definite step towards a correct understanding of the cause of his condition. But he will say here, " How is this knowledge going to help me ? Surely now that I have appendicitis the only way to cure it is by operation ? " The removal of the diseased appendix by means of surgical operation is not a cure for the trouble by any means. For the original condition which was the cause of the appendix trouble in the first place�the chronic constipation and toxic bowel condition�has not been improved in any way by the operation. Indeed, it has been made worse, as the appendicitis victim finds out to his cost after the operation.

The surgical removal of appendices does nothing to cure the underlying bowel trouble ; it does nothing to improve�in the real sense� the patient's health. But it certainly puts fees�and often fat fees� into the pockets of operating surgeons. Hence the popularity of such operations among those self-same surgeons, whose advice in these matters the public accepts with such touching and childlike trust and confidence. Then again, if a person is in acute pain he will consent to anything if he is promised relief from his sufferings thereby.

This is not to say that all surgeons are actuated by purely pecuniary motives, but even in medical circles it is admitted that there is far too great a tendency for operations in general to be advised, and most especially where appendices and tonsils are concerned. Some medical authorities go so far as to say that at least fifty per cent, of all operations performed nowadays are unnecessary ; and this from men who believe in the efficacy of operations as a means to restored health !

The only real cure for appendicitis is fasting. The fast�Nature's safest and most simple curative measure�is the one sure road to cure in all appendix troubles. Why, then, does not the medical profession make use of it ? Merely another example of its steadfast and purblind refusal to accept any curative measure�however provably successful�that does not emanate from within its own closed circle of ideas.

Treatment.�Many hundreds of cases of appendicitis have been cured by Naturopaths simply through the agency of the fast. It is very difficult for many, however, to secure the services of a qualified Naturopath at these times, so that the following outline of home treatment will be of the utmost service to them. Appendicitis brings with it a state of great nervousness and fear both in the minds of the sufferer and friends ; but if the natural treatment to be outlined herewith is carried into operation without delay, then no fear as to the ultimate consequences need be maintained.

To begin with, the patient should be kept as quiet as possible, and nothing but sips of water given to drink. Hot compresses can be .placed over the painful area several times daily. An enema, containing about a pint of warm water, can be given each day for the first two or three days, to cleanse the lower bowel; but only if it can be taken with comfort by the patient, not otherwise.

About the third day the condition should have eased sufficiently for a full enema to be given, containing about three pints of warm water; and this should be repeated daily thereafter until all pain and inflammation have subsided. From the third day onwards fruit juices, as well as water, can be given the patient.

Nothing more than the above simple treatment, sensibly applied is needed to overcome an appendicitis attack, and as soon as convalescence develops the all-fruit diet can be adopted. (Do not be in too great a hurry to give food. It is better to fast the patient for a day or two longer than less !) After a few days of this diet the full weekly dietary, can be then gradually begun, and it should be adhered to faithfully thereafter. If there is still a tendency towards constipation, the rules for its eradication  should be put into operation, and the enema used on occasion as necessary. The breathing and other exercises given in the Appendix, together with the morning dry friction and sitz-bath or sponge, should be incorporated into the daily regime as soon as the patient feels sufficiently recovered.

A scheme of clean and sensible living�early hours, no excesses, etc.�and the adoption of the advice given in the foregoing paragraphs, and in a few weeks the erstwhile sufferer from appendicitis will be a far healthier person than for many years before; and in addition, his appendix�a most useful little organ employed by Nature in the work of detoxifying the colon and lubricating the faeces�will be retained in his system in as healthy a condition as possible, instead of reposing�as in all probability it would have been�in the specimen bottle of some operating surgeon !*

SPECIAL NOTE RE PERITONITIS.�Where peritonitis sets in after appendicitis, it is the operation which is to blame, never the disease itself. Appendicitis treated along natural lines can never develop into peritonitis.

Cancer. � Cancer is the dread disease of to-day, the disease spoken of with bated breath by all. It is the veritable " white scourge " of our times, and, as statistics plainly indicate, is steadily on the increase in all civilised countries, in spite of all the efforts made by the medical profession to keep it in check. Despite the expenditure of millions of pounds in research work, modern Medical Science has not yet discovered the cause of cancer ! And it never will, even though many millions more are expended, if it continues its researches along the same lines as now. No amount of work in laboratories, among test-tubes or upon dumb animals, will reveal the cause of cancer. That cause is only to be found in an examination of the previous life-history of the sufferer from the disease himself', in an examination of his past medical history and general habits of living. Cancer is not the result of infection by some mythical germ ; it is not caused by accident or chance ; it is the direct outcome of a lifetime of wrong living�dietetic and otherwise�plus prolonged suppressive medical treatment, by drug and knife, for one disease after another !

If a person is suffering from cancer, then that person can rest assured that the disease has only developed in his system as a result of the breaking down of the body's powers of resistance as a culmination to a prolonged and insidious attack upon the health of the organism by a combination of all (or some) of the following health-destroying factors :

(a) A lifetime of wrong feeding (a more than usual subsistence upon the demineralised and devitalised white bread, sugar, and cooked and refined food dietary of to-day).

(b) Chronic constipation�leading to the taking of excessive quantities of purgative drugs.

(c) The using up of the body's powers and forces through overwork, excessive worry, fear, morbid and destructive thinking, indulgence in excesses of all kinds, etc.

(d) Previous suppressive medical treatment by knife and drug for one disease after another.

(e) Improper care of the body, bodily organs, and functions generally, especially the generative organs in the case of women.

From the above combination of causes are the seeds for the development of cancer sown within the system, and the organ finally selected for the appearance of the disease is usually one which has been subjected to prolonged and persistent irritation of one kind or another. (It must be stressed again that cancer is not something which appears quite suddenly within the organism ; it is the outcome of a series of factors making for the gradual deterioration of the body's powers of resistance, and is a process of gradual development, although the actual appearance of the cancer itself at the end of the process may seem to be quite a sudden affair.) Cancer only appears after the forty mark has been reached, as a general rule, and this in itself shows how true to facts the foregoing analysis of the origin and development of the condition really is, and how lamentably wide of the mark the orthodox medical and lay attitude to the disease is, with its mere looking for " germs " as the cause and its neglect of all other factors! Editors Note:  This was written 70 years ago. Nowadays cancer is appearing in infants and pre-teens. ( See Harry Benjamin, Prophet!)

Treatment. � Whether it be cancer of the stomach or rectum, or cancer of the liver, etc., the genesis of the complaint is all the same ; and medical treatment by means of operation or X-ray or radium is just futile. Such methods do nothing to get rid of the real causes at work in the development of the disease, and are really destructive in their ultimate effect, however much they may appear to palliate matters for the time being.

A most insidious feature of present-day medical methods of dealing with cancer by operation is the removing of all lymphatic glands in the vicinity of the area affected. This is carried out on the assumption that these glands serve as a medium for the spread of the disease to other organs ; but the whole thing is monstrously nonsensical�yet another sign of medical inability to understand the immensely valuable part played by the lymphatic glands in guarding the body from auto-intoxication. All that such treatment does is to weaken yet further a defence mechanism already far too weak to carry out its allotted task satisfactorily.

Cancer of the breast is the only form of cancer that seems to respond at all to operation, the patient being comparatively well thereafter. But if the principles underlying the development of the disease are understood, it will be realised that such treatment has done nothing to build up the health of the individual concerned; nor has it done anything to prevent cancer developing in any other organ at a later date.

If the cancer patient is to be cured at all�really cured�it is only by natural methods of treatment that this can be effected. By the removal of causes�if such be at all possible in any given case. It does not do to raise the hopes of the cancer sufferer too high, for if the condition has developed at all far, a cure is well-nigh impossible ; but in the comparatively early stages a great deal can be done to effect a cure by thoroughly applied natural treatment. Fasting, strict dieting, manipulation, eliminative baths, sunray treatment, etc., will all be required, and obviously the best place for the carrying out of this is a Nature-Cure home. Failing this, the cancer sufferer should place himself at once under the care of a competent Naturopath for treatment. Self-treatment, at home, is not desirable for a number of reasons, where cancer is concerned. There are several authentic instances on record where cancer has been cured by natural methods, but no doubt the disease was not very far advanced in all these cases, as the writer doubts very much whether a complete cure would have been possible otherwise.

Cholera. � See section on Fevers.

Colic. � This is the name given to sharp, shooting pains in the intestines. Its cause, most often, is the eating of incompatible or wrongly combined foods, and the following simple treatment will be quite sufficient to set things right in all ordinary cases.

Treatment. � The patient should drink nothing but warm water for twenty-four hours�longer if necessary�and the bowel should be cleansed once or twice during that time with a warm-water enema. A hot-water bottle or hot flannels can be placed over the painful area, and the patient rested in bed. If this is done, any ordinary attack of colic will soon pass off, and strict attention to diet thereafter, along the lines consistently laid down in the present volume, will prevent the occurrence of future attacks. Where the pain persists in spite of the above treatment, a Naturopath should be consulted, as there will most likely be some other factor concerned in the causation of the trouble, which only personal examination will reveal. In any case, the safest procedure is to carry on with the water fast, using the enema daily or twice daily meanwhile.

Colitis. � Colitis means inflammation of the colon or large intestine, and is of two kinds : ulcerative colitis and mucous colitis. To understand the cause of colitis it is necessary to realise that the lining of the colon is of sensitive mucous membrane, and only prolonged irritation of this delicate mucous lining of the colon can develop into colitis. The two great factors concerned in the setting up of this continuous irritation of the lining of the colon which ultimately leads to colitis are chronic constipation and the purgative habit.

When, through habitual wrong feeding habits, the colon can no longer perform its function properly, and becomes sluggish, constipation arises, and faecal deposits accumulate around the walls of the colon and set up irritation there ; and the purgative drugs taken to combat this condition only succeed in making this irritation of the lining of the colon worse, in proportion to their strength, as explained in the treatment for Constipation farther on in the present section.

The more that meat and other flesh foods form a part of the dietary of such a person, the more will putrefactive matter form in the colon, and the worse therefore will be the effects on the general condition of the colon itself. It is because of the combination of all these factors that colitis ultimately appears, generally.

It is often assumed that the eating of foods containing " roughage " is a prominent cause of colitis, but this is owing to the lining of the colon being in such a devitalised state to begin with, because of the factors previously mentioned. Foods containing a large percentage of natural roughage, such as fruits, vegetables, wholemeal bread, etc., can never be the cause of colitis, although if colitis is once present they may serve to aggravate matters. As a matter of fact, an abundance of natural foods such as fruits, vegetables, wholemeal bread, etc., in the dietary to begin with would have effectually prevented the appearance of colitis in after-life, because these foods are the foods given us by Nature for the very purpose of keeping the intestines and colon clean and healthy by virtue of the scouring that they give to the structures named in their passage through them. The more roughage food contains, the more will it aid in the work of the colon and promote healthy functioning�not interfere with it, as so many believe. Given a colon that is already in a devitalised condition, however, then foods containing much roughage may tend to aggravate the poor condition of the colon and increase the tendency to colitis, but only because the colon, in its present unhealthy condition, is not in a fit position to deal with them adequately.

Previous suppressive treatment of disease by means of drugs and operations may tend to bring on colitis in certain cases, in conjunction with other systemic factors already dealt with ; whilst a general catarrhal condition of the whole system is usually an underlying factor in all cases of colitis. (For an understanding of how a catarrhal condition arises, the reader is referred to the treatment of Catarrh.

Once the cause and nature of colitis are understood and recognised in their true light, then the means to be employed for the eradication of the trouble are relatively simple. The first thing needed is to institute treatment which will cleanse the colon and the whole intestinal tract, and allow the inflamed mucous membrane to heal. Then a strict diet of natural foods must be followed, and before long the erstwhile sufferer from colitis will begin to believe that he was never afflicted with such a painful and debilitating malady. Unfortunately for most people, it is orthodox medical treatment which they have to adopt in their case if they develop colitis, and the medical attitude towards the disease is such that the trouble is more often than not aggravated rather than lessened by the treatment.

To Medical Science colitis is a disease due to " germ infection," and by means of bowel wash-outs with highly suppressive drugs the medical profession seeks to cure the condition. These methods often succeed in making the disease chronic ; but even if they appear to be successful in suppressing or checking the trouble for the time being, they are never in the least degree curative in the real sense. The toxic matter Nature was trying to eliminate through the medium of the bowel lining (mucous membrane) is forced back into the system again by such treatment, and this being so, the colitis is always likely to break out again at some future time.

Another feature about the orthodox medical treatment for colitis which adversely affects the patient's future health is the ruling out of all foods containing roughage from the diet. As such foods as wholemeal bread, fruits, and green vegetables are included under this heading, the unfortunate colitis sufferer soon finds himself in a very mineral-starved condition as a result of such feeding, with the possibility of acidosis in one or other of its more serious forms as a very likely complication to his present bowel trouble !

Treatment. � As already pointed out, when once colitis is recognised in its true light, then the treatment required for its cure is relatively simple, fasting and strict dieting being the two great essentials required. Really serious cases may need a fairly lengthy fast to begin with, to enable the inflamed colon to regain normal tone, but ordinary cases should proceed as follows :

Begin with a short fast for from three to five days, as directed in the Appendix, and then continue with the full milk diet as outlined therein, remaining on this for two to four weeks as deemed necessary. Rest as much as possible the while. Then begin on the full weekly dietary as given in the Appendix, but substituting stewed fruit for fresh fruit, at first, and steamed vegetables or vegetable broth for salads, until able to deal with these raw foods satisfactorily. These may be included gradually in the diet later, as the condition of the bowel improves. Further fasts and periods on the milk diet may be necessary, at intervals of two to three months, according to the way the case is progressing.    Sufferers must use their discretion here, of course.

During the fast, and after if necessary, the bowels should be cleansed nightly with the warm-water enema or gravity douche ; this can be discontinued as soon as the bowels begin to function naturally as a result of the treatment. If it be necessary to use the enema after the first week, it can be used every other night from then on. The dry friction and sitz-bath detailed in the Appendix should be taken every morning in conjunction with the scheme of general exercises also outlined therein ; and a hot Epsom-salts bath should be taken twice weekly. A hot and cold sitz-bath should be taken every night�-except on those nights when an Epsom-salts bath is being taken�until the trouble has quite cleared up.

By carrying on in the manner outlined above, the sufferer from colitis will soon be on the path to health again, but the strictest attention to the future dietary is essential if trouble of the same nature is to be prevented. No condiments, seasonings, or sauces of any kind are to be taken, and the foods to be most careful of are flesh foods-meat, fish, etc.�as these are the most putrefactive of all, and so most prone to affect the colon and set up irritation and rekindle inflammation there. Foods which have a detoxifying and cleansing effect upon the intestines on their passage through�such as fruits and vegetables� are most essential of all to the future dietary, despite the horror with which such foods are viewed by the medical profession where colitis is concerned. (Flesh foods can with benefit be left out of the dietary altogether, and their place taken by eggs, nuts, or cheese.) Sugar and all white-flour products are also extremely harmful in all cases of colitis.

NOTE. �It is quite possible that many sufferers from colitis will not be able to eat fruits and salads with comfort right away, but after the initial fast and period on the milk diet they should find such foods much easier to get on with, if eaten as directed in the diet-sheet; but remember what has already been said on this point in the preceding remarks. The colon should have lost most of its inflamed condition by then, and fruits and salads will be much more easily tolerated� and even welcomed. For cleansing the bowel, nothing but warm water should ever be employed. No medicinal agents or drugs of any kind should be used.

Part 2 Here.     Part 3 Here