175. God has provided us with constitutional force, which will be needed at different periods of our life. If we recklessly exhaust this force by continual overtaxation, we shall sometime be losers. Our usefulness will be lessened, if not life itself destroyed.
176. God endowed man with so great vital force that he has withstood the accumulation of disease upon the race in consequence of perverted habits, and has continued for six thousand years. . . . If Adam, at his creation, had not been endowed with twenty times as much vital force as men now have, the race, with their present habits of living in violation of natural law, would have become extinct.
177. The tree of life possessed the power to perpetuate life, and as long as they [Adam and Eve] ate of it, they could not die. The lives of the antediluvians were protracted because of the life-giving power of this tree, which was transmitted to them from Adam and Eve.
178. The Bible is a leaf from the tree of life, and by eating it, by receiving it into our minds, we shall grow strong to do the will of God.
179. Neither are they willing to wait the slow process of nature to build up the overtaxed energies of the system.
180. Useful employment would bring into exercise the enfeebled muscles, enliven the stagnant blood, and the entire system would be invigorated to overcome bad conditions.
181. If physical exercise were combined with mental exertion, the blood would be quickened in its circulation, the action of the heart would be more perfect, impure matter would be thrown off, and new life and vigor would be experienced in every part of the body.
182. If invalids would recover health, they should not discontinue physical exercise. . . . There will be increased vitality, which is so necessary to health.
183. They are deprived in a great measure of air, which will invigorate them and give them energy and vitality.
184. Fresh air is the free blessing of Heaven, calculated to electrify the whole system.
185. Nature will restore their vigor and strength in their sleeping hours, if her laws are not violated.
186. Bathing helps the bowels, stomach, and liver, giving energy and new life to each.
187. The latter class do not exercise the mind; their muscles are exercised while their brains are robbed of intellectual strength; just as the minds of thinking men are worked while their bodies are robbed of strength and vigor by their neglect to exercise the muscles. Those who are content to devote their lives to physical labor, and leave others to do the thinking for them, while they simply carry out what other brains have planned, will have strength of muscle, but feeble intellects. This class fall more readily if attacked by disease, because the system is not vitalized by the electrical force of the brain to resist disease.
188. Bring to your aid the power of the will, which will resist cold, and will give energy to the nervous system.
189. Misuse of the body shortens that period of time which God designs shall be used in his service. By allowing ourselves to form wrong habits, by keeping late hours, by gratifying appetite at the expense of health, we lay the foundation for feebleness. By neglecting to take physical exercise, by overworking mind or body, we unbalance the nervous system. Those who thus shorten their lives by disregarding nature's laws, are guilty of robbery before God.
190. Those who make great exertions to accomplish just so much work in a given time, and continue to labor when their judgment tells them they should rest, are never gainers. They are living on borrowed capital. They are expending the vital force which they will need at a future time. And when the energy they have so recklessly used, is demanded, they fail for want of it. If all the hours of the day are well improved, the work extended into the evening is so much extra and the overtaxed system will suffer from the burden imposed upon it. I have been shown that those who do this often lose much more than they gain, for their energies are exhausted, and they labor on nervous excitement. They may not realize any immediate injury, but they are surely undermining their constitution.
191. The effects produced by living in close, ill-ventilated rooms are these: The system becomes weakened, the circulation is depressed, the blood moves sluggishly through the system, because it is not purified and vitalized by the pure, invigorating air of heaven. The mind becomes depressed and gloomy, while the whole system is enervated.
192. Doubt, perplexity, and excessive grief often sap the vital forces and induce nervous diseases of a most debilitating and distressing character.
193. Unhealthful habits of eating are injuring thousands and tens of thousands. Food should be thoroughly cooked, neatly prepared, and appetizing.
194. I do not approve of eating much cold food, for the reason that the vitality must be drawn from the system to warm the food until it becomes of the same temperature as the stomach, before the work of digestion can be carried on.
195. They eat improperly, and this calls their nervous energies to the stomach, and they have no vitality to expend in other directions.
196. Children are permitted to indulge their tastes freely, to eat at all hours. . . . The digestive organs, like a mill which is continually kept running, become enfeebled, vital force is called from the brain to aid the stomach in its overwork, and thus the mental powers are weakened. The unnatural stimulation and wear of the vital forces make the children nervous, impatient of restraint, self-willed, and irritable.
197. They closely apply their minds to books, and eat the allowance of the laboring man. Under such habits some grow corpulent, because the system is clogged. Others become lean, feeble, and weak, because their vital powers are exhausted in throwing off the excess of food.
198. This is the way you treat the stomach. It is thoroughly exhausted, but instead of letting it rest, you give it more food, and then call the vitality from other parts of the system to the stomach to assist in the work of digestion.
199. The poor tired stomach may complain of weariness in vain. More food is forced upon it, which sets the digestive organs in motion, again to perform the same round of labor through the sleeping hours. In the morning there is a sense of languor and loss of appetite; a lack of energy is felt through the entire system.
200. And what influence does overeating have upon the stomach? -- It becomes debilitated, the digestive organs are weakened, and disease, with all its train of evils, is brought on as the result. If persons were diseased before, they thus increase the difficulties upon them, and lessen their vitality every day they live. They call their vital powers into unnecessary action to take care of the food that they place in their stomachs.
201. Those who are excited, anxious, or in a great hurry would do well not to eat until they have found rest or relief, for the vital powers, already severely taxed, cannot supply the necessary gastric juice.
202. She should not call vitality unnecessarily to the surface to supply the want of sufficient clothing.
203. Everywhere you may look you will see pale, sickly, care-worn, broken-down, dispirited, discouraged women. They are generally overworked, and their vital energies exhausted by frequent child-bearing.
204. Children who are robbed of that vitality which they should have inherited from their parents should have the utmost care.
205. Secret indulgence is, in many cases, the only real cause of the numerous complaints of the young. This vice is laying waste the vital forces, and debilitating the system.
206. Sick people who take these drug poisons do appear to get well. With some there is sufficient life force for nature to draw upon, so far to expel the poison from the system that the sick, having a period of rest, recover.
207. Some preserve a cold, chilling reserve, an iron dignity, that repels those who are brought within their influence. This spirit is contagious, . . . it chokes the natural current of human sympathy, cordiality, and love; and under its influence people become constrained, and their social and generous attributes are destroyed for want of exercise. Not only is the spiritual health affected, but the physical health suffers by this unnatural depression.
208. The burden of sin, with its unrest and unsatisfied desires, lies at the very foundation of a large share of the maladies the sinner suffers.
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