It is interesting to observe some of the health consequences of nations in wartime.

In World War I, Denmark's sea lanes were blockaded so that they could not receive normal shipments of meat and dairy products. They consumed first 80 percent of their hogs and 34 percent of their dairy cows, then survived on potatoes, home-grown vegetables and grains previously fed hogs and cattle. Tea, coffee, tobacco and alcohol were unavailable or forbidden.During the most severe years, Denmark's death rates from disease dropped 34 percent over the preceding 18 years. It was the only European nation with no death rate rise in the 1917 influenza epidemic. The Danes' plant-centered diet increased their immunity to infectious disease and illustrated the waste that occurs when grains are cycled through livestock. England, in World War II, had similar circumstances with similar results.

Sarajevo's story is the same. Though suffering ravages of war, the people subsist on rice, beans and macaroni plus home-grown fruits and vegetables. They, too, are much healthier. Many diabetics are no longer dependent upon insulin, fewer cases of flu and colds reported and people generally feel better, physically, doctors reported. (Washington Times. 11-17th July issue, 1994).

While the people of Denmark, England and Sarajevo suffered much, their experiences of living on fruit and vegetables diets provides lessons for us. Today, right here in America, meat and dairy animals consume enough grain and soybeans to feed the whole country five times over.

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It is not easy to embark on a plant-centered diet, but the benefits can be enormous: 1. Better health and the ability, after a few months, in most cases, to eat more yet maintain optimum weight, 2. More energy and zest for living, 3. Considerably lower food bills, and, 4. Most significant - as we eliminate "death" from our bodies (i.e. eating the flesh of slaughtered/dead animals), our bodies can absorb more "life" from living plants and herbs, if not cooked to death.

There are ways to have affordable health care and to solve world hunger. Peace on earth is attainable. A nonviolent society has roots in a nonviolent diet.

Vonda J. Thorpe


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