There are a few things: Americans love more than a good fad, especially good health fad. In fairness, I don’t know if that’s, an American thing or just a everybody thing. There was a fan that went around back when I was a kid back in the 80s, and I don’t know how widespread this was and made has been a little regional thing where I grew up in my little corner of the world, but It was called passive exercise and it was ridiculous.
It was especially popular with older women, but it was basically this thing when you laid down on this table – and there was a little thing up here – that you put your arms in and these little like things that you put your legs in and they would just Kind of move for you and it would shake you around and you basically just look like a bug that couldn’t get off of its back, but the machine did everything like you, didn’t use your muscles in any way.
You just lay there and got all shook around by it, and I guess this was supposed to make you stronger somehow now just to be clear. Passive stretching exercises are done all the time and like physical therapy situations to increase mobility and joints and whatnot so that there are some benefits to it.
But but these people weren’t using it for those benefits they were using it to actually lose weight as an alternative to actual exercise, and this was clearly just the next logical step from that that but jostling belt the machine that they used back In the 50s and 60s, which again is supposed to do what exactly you won &, # 39 t lose any fat, but the fat you have will be really dizzy.
This quackery, thankfully, died a merciful death, as most health quackery does. But there is one bit of health quackery that stuck around in a big way and is now one of the biggest companies in the world.
I am talking, of course, about John Harvey Kellogg and his corn flakes, but there’s a lot more to his legacy than just breakfast cereal, just to be fair to John Harvey Kellogg medicine back in the early 1900s was just an utter free-for-all.
Literally, anybody could put any kind of potion or concoction together and put it up on store shelves, hence the cocaine spritzers. I talked about a few articles back in fact, pretty much. Anybody could just buy a medical degree and start calling themselves.
Doctors was almost no training whatsoever, which is exactly what John Brinkley did. John Brinkley was kind of a small-time huckster who dreamed of becoming a doctor like his father. His father was a Civil War medic back in the day, but he didn’t want to, you, know, earn it, so he just bought it soon after he had his degree in hand, he moved to Milford Kansas and they got there just in time.
For the Spanish flu epidemic of 1918 and by all accounts, he did do a lot to help out and improve the lives of people in his town. During this epidemic. They all appreciated his efforts. How much help he actually was is not known.
They didn’t really have WebMD to double-check him back then, but after the epidemic was over and he’d, earned the trust of the town that’s. When he got a little bit more creative. He was looking for a way to help out his male patients who struggled with impotence, and he figured out obviously that if two testicles weren’t doing the job well, clearly a third one was needed, so he began implanting third testicles into his patients.
Scrotums, but before you condemn him too much, do you think that’s crazy and there’s, absolutely no way that would work just just keep in mind. They were goat testicles that’s. Worse, men of course thought that this was insane and they stayed as far away from him as they possibly could, except that’s totally, not what happened.
They actually lined up around the block to get this procedure and he made millions of dollars. This is the world in the time of John Harvey Kellogg so perspective, John Harvey Kellogg was born one of eleven children in 1856 to a mother whose uterus was apparently a clown car.
The important thing to know about the catalogues is that they were seventh-day Adventist, and the important thing to know about seventh-day adventists is that they believe that the mind body and spirit are one.
So the best way to care for your spirit is to care for your body through strict dietary standards. They also believe very strongly, especially back in those days that the second coming of Christ was imminent and it was going to bring on you know the end of the world.
This was actually spawned from the millerite movement that predicted the world would end on October 22nd. In 1844, and when that day came and went without the world ending, it became known as the great disappointment.
They were disappointed when they woke up on the 23rd and realized that the world hadn’t ended and he thought that millennial humor was dark. Anyway, the Kellogg & # 39. S were heavily involved in the church, which is how John Harvey got the eye of Jaynes and Ellen White, who were the leaders of the church at the time they took him under their wing, educated them and eventually became a health writer for this church magazine, meaning He wrote articles that reflected the values of the church at the time, meaning no eating meat, no caffeine, no drinking, no smoking, no masturbation, no sex before marriage, no sex after marriage, unless you’re trying to have a baby, which probably explains why they All had families the size of football teams.
Now you might have noticed. Some of those rules are pretty good health advice really, and these are rules that the Adventist follow to this very day, and some studies have shown that they can live between four to ten years.
Longer than the rest of the average u.s. population, so I mean, as religious ideas go, maybe not the worst anyway, with these values deeply rooted in him, John Harvey Kellogg became a doctor and not a fake doctor.
Like John Brinkley, he actually did go to New York University and got his degree in 1875. The next year he took over the Western health reform Institute, which was a seventh-day Adventist, run medical institution and he changed the name to the Battle.
Creek medical, surgical, sanitarium. This was actually a pretty clever play on words, because a sanatorium back in those days was a place where people would go to kind of recover from tuberculosis and polio and diseases like that.
This was pre antibiotic days and but he changed it to sanitarium, because then it’s kind of kind of like sanitary which connoted this idea of cleanliness inside and out how Kellogg and the Battle Creek Sanitarium got people clean on the inside and out.
Well, this is where we have to talk about enemas lots and lots of enemas. John Harvey Kellogg was obsessed with poop and he believed that it was toxic and that you had to get it out of you, or else those toxins would leach into the rest of your body.
So he advocated having at least four bm’s a day and if you were having fewer than four bm’s a day. Well, they were just gon na have to stick a hose up there and go get it. Apparently he collected his poop and examined it every single day.
He believed that if you’re eating healthy than your poop wouldn’t smell, so he was actually fond of going around and showing his non smelling poop to any visitors. That came over to see him like he do and of course, if your poop did smell, then it was just loaded with toxins and you had to get that stuff out of there with hydrotherapy, but sometimes hydrotherapy didn’t work, so he also advocated Injecting yogurt up into your colon to clean it out, you know how you use yogurt to clean things.
What you don’t fill your boat with yogurt every day. Do even health bro now weirdly, and this is something you’re gon na, hear surprising him out in this article. He wasn’t too far off about this. He was actually one of the first people to pay attention to the gut microbiome, the sort of ecology of bacteria that grows in our guts that help us with digestion and it’s.
Apparently a lot more important than we originally thought. The composition of our microbiome affects our digestion, which affects our health and even affects our cognition and moods. We’re, a lot more controlled by our guts than we think we are.
This is why probiotics have become popular and one of the best vehicles for probiotics and most popular ones out. There is yogurt. Luckily, when Jamie Lee Curtis promotes Activia, she’s, just suggesting that you eat it.
Not you know, sticking up your butt. He also advocated regular exercise, which believe it or not, was a groundbreaking idea. Back in the day there weren’t cars back then people walked everywhere. People worked back-breaking jobs.
In fact, the goal was to do as little work as possible. That’s. What everybody was going for. That was a mindset at the time I mean isn’t it bad for your body. To put it through stress like that Kellogg and the Battle Creek Sanitarium played a huge part in changing that mindset, but when he changed the most easily was breakfast, the sanitarium was run by the Adventists and they advocated a very strict vegetarian diet.
So Kellogg and his team were always working on new vegetarian recipes with the interesting goal of making them as bland as possible. You heard that right, not really. That was their goal to make their food as bland as possible because they thought that sweet or flavorful foods would entice excitement or even sexual arousal.
More on that nonsense and Abed. So the foods were generally starchy, high-fiber, grains and nuts and then processed in some way to make them easier to digest and one of his earlier food making. Attempts II took wheat, oat and horn and he combined it all together and he cooked it for a long time, and then he smash it up into brittle little bits that everybody liked it was pretty popular.
But it was a little bit too close to a food product that was already out there called granula. Now as a businessman, he had a choice to make. He could either just walk away from it so that he’s. Not you know encroaching on somebody else’s turf or he could give it a name that’s completely different from the old name, so that there’s, no confusion between the two.
Instead, he did the whole sanatorium sanitarium thing and changed just one letter to call his product granola, so that worked out. But of course it was the cornflakes that put Kellogg on the map and it was kind of an accident.
According to the story. One day Kellogg was working on a sort of a cornmeal product and he got called away to deal with something totally forgot about it. When he came back, the dough had been sitting out overnight and was pretty much useless, but he figured you know.
Instead of taking a loss, let’s, get a little bit creative with it, so he spread it out really thin on a pan, baked it for a little while and what came out to a surprise. Were these little flaky corn flakes that were just easy to digest and easy to eat, he liked it immediately and he filed a patent for it in 1896, and this is where it’s, important to point out that John Harvey Kellogg didn’t do all this on his own.
He actually had a partner in the sanitarium. They will will Kellogg actually is his brother and the invention of his cornflakes marked the beginning of the end of their relationship, because John Harvey’s.
Patent only listed himself as the creator of the cornflakes and will being a partner he felt like he should have been included on that patent, so that kind of started things in a bad direction. But the thing that really caused a division between the two was sugar.
We’ll, wanted to add some sugar to sweeten up the cereal a little bit but John Harvey wouldn’t have it. He was all about the blandness. So there was a division between the two they couldn’t settle it.
We’ll. Finally, just decided to start his own company called the Battle. Creek toasted cornflake company add a little sugar to it and named his toasted corn flakes this led the endless lawsuits in a bitter rivalry that lasted the rest of their lives.
John Harvey continued to sell his version under the name gren os –, because apparently he can only change one letter at a time, but it wasn’t very popular because, as it turns out, people like sugar wills, cornflakes won out.
They sold like gangbusters and the Battle Creek toasted corn Flay company eventually change its name to just Kellogg’s. After will and John Harvey was never allowed to use the name Kellogg for any business dealings for the rest of his life, but his little accidental discovery literally changed the way people eat breakfast all around the world.
You have to understand at the time. Breakfast was a pain in the neck. Mom had to get up super early and start a fire and make everything from scratch, and now she just had to grab a box of cornflakes.
It also helped that this hit the market at about the same time as pasteurized milk, so that kind of added a little milk to the fire. Now before you go feeling sorry for John Harvey Kellogg, he did have a dark side and a weird side.
He had many sides yeah. He was involved in some really weird, weird stuff at the sanitarium like beyond enemas weird yeah. Their basic approach at the sanitarium was just throwing spaghetti to the wall and seeing what stuck and they threw a lot of spaghetti, electrotherapy coils Arclight treatments for the scalp mechanical horses, slapping machines, ultraviolet dental treatments, hot air bass, ear radiation and that butt shaking thing, which Was actually it was called the asilo manipulator, you know between the blandest food in the world and the endless enemas and the getting fire shoved up your butt and getting your ass kicked by a carwash and riding on mechanical horses and whatnot.
I just I mean I would love to read the yelp reviews for this place. I specifically asked for strawberry flavored yogurt at my butt, and they gave me blueberry yogurt at my butt would not return one-star.
Well, this is fun and it’s mostly harmless, but it’s. John Harvey Kellogg views on sex where things take a pretty serious dark turn. Nothing brings out that old-time religion like a little pit, fit the didgeridoo John Harvey just kind of did everything to the extreme.
He took his religious beliefs to the extreme. He took his dietary beliefs to the extreme and you could even argue that this worked out pretty well for him because he created a pretty. You know successful business around it and everything, but he added that same extreme mindset to sexual matters, and this is where things got bad like bad.
First of all, he was obsessed with masturbation and he basically blamed all kinds of ailments and ills, basically telling people that the reason they’re sick is because of their own moral failings by telling a grown adult to stop schloop in the poof-poof.
You know that that’s, fine, they’re, a grown person. They can handle that, but he was way more concerned about kids in masturbation, and this is where grandpa cornflake stopped, looking quite so fun and eccentric.
First of all, he blamed everything on masturbation. If a kid became difficult to deal with that their personalities changed, they became a little bit temperamental. Well then, his immediate assessment was that obviously they’re, scooping the poof poof, and this must be stopped sloop.
Something else he encouraged parents to actually tie their kids hands together when they went to bed at night and they put knots against their back. So they couldn’t, lay on their back and be tempted to.
You know, touch themselves in heaven forbid. You’re, a kid that gets caught actually schloop in the poof-poof, because his punishments for doing this were disgusting. For example, little boys were often circumcised, with no anesthesia as a punishment for masturbation, so that they would never want to do that again and little girls had their clitoris is burned off with carbonic acid, and this wasn’t just something he like wrote Down somewhere, this was actually done to a lot of kids and hey.
If you still haven & # 39, t decided what to think of him here’s. One last thing: he was super into eugenics. Nobody shocked. He strongly believed that the races should be kept separate and that people should only interbreed within their own race, but beyond that, he thought that you should only enter breed with the best version of your race.
Now that sounds confusing don’t worry. He lobbied strongly for the government to create an agency called the pedigree monitoring board, where they would painstakingly categorize people into pedigrees, just like dogs and then enforce which pedigree could breed with which other pedigree, so don’t worry, sit back and relax.
Your government will tell you with whom you can pit pit the de jure. Do you know how we’re, always saying that you can’t judge people in the past by our current moral standards, because it was a different time back.
Then, and all that yeah no, this was extreme back then, which is why luckily it didn’t happen. John Harvey Kellogg legacy is complex. Let’s. Go with that. Some people consider him an absolute monster and a whack job for all.
The reasons I just mentioned, but think for a second, though, how he changed the world, how much of our current lifestyle has been guided by the theories and ideas that he popularized Americans spend fifteen point five billion dollars on breakfast cereal every year that comes out to 2.
7 billion boxes now, in fairness, most of the success of the Kellogg Company goes to the bridges brother will, who’s, the one who actually like put it out there and everything, but it was based off of experimentation and ideas and beliefs that John Harvey Kellogg had been working on for decades, the fitness industry raked in ninety four billion dollars in 2018.
There was no such thing as a fitness industry before John Harvey Kellogg, not to mention how long it took the rest of the world to catch up to his ideas on drinking and smoking and probiotics. You know he was so far ahead of his time.
In some ways, and so stuck in the Middle Ages in other ways and yeah, he changed the world. Maybe there’s, something to that old Apple, commercial. You know here’s to the crazy ones. This was just a fun article about a weird guy.
There is a movie out there called the road to wellville.shoot it as well, and it’s all set at the Battle Creek Sanitarium. So if you ever wanted to kind of step into that world and see just how nutty and crazy it all was that that movie is a good place to start and before I go, this isn’t like a sponsored post or anything, but I Wan na, let you guys know about a streaming service.
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