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It may almost be taken for granted that in all skin complaints there will be some disturbance of the digestive system, and a preparatory course will be necessary to bring it into a condition to be able to deal in a satisfactory manner with the food that is taken. The stomach should be given a rest for a few days, and during that time no solid food of any kind should be taken. Those who are possessed of sufficient will-power should keep watering only for twenty-four to forty-eight hours; others should take fruit juices only. This liquid diet may be kept up for three or four days, and will be a good start in clearing the stomach of the offending mucus.
If there has been a tendency to constipation – and this is practically certain to be the case in skin complaints – then the warm-water enema should be used once a day to clear the lower bowel and activate the intestines. Just plain water should be used, and nothing should be added to it. Its use is simple and a matter of personal experiment, and is far easier to do than to describe. It is much better and safer than taking laxatives.
This cleansing process should be followed by the all-fruit diet, if the weather is not too cold; in the middle of a cold spell it may be better to take two meals of fruit and one of nicely cooked vegetables. This restricted diet may be carried on for another four to seven days, depending on the reaction and the condition of the sufferer. Many people find it quite easy to carry on in this way for ten days or two weeks, and if the condition of the skin is responding to it the extra time will be well worth while. The bulkiness of the diet will keep the bowels acting as a rule, but there is no danger if they are rather sluggish. The flora of the colon will gradually change through the large amount of cellulose that is in the fruit and vegetables and bring the bowels back to normal activity.
The idea of this restricted diet is thoroughly to cleanse the whole alimentary tract, so that when the ordinary diet is adopted the system will be able to make full use of the nutritional elements. A short cleansing diet will do more to tone up the stomach and the bowels than any amount of medicine, and apart from its good effect upon the skin it will improve the general health. Conditioning the digestive tract in this way should be done at least twice a year. It will be beneficial to those who do not suffer from any specific trouble, and will help to prevent the development of disease, especially the complaints that have their roots in digestive disorders.
With fruit and vegetables as the basic diet it is very easy to build up a sensible daily menu. One should add the protein and the starchy foods gradually. The protein foods consist of meat, fish, eggs, cheese, nuts and such preparations, and the starchy foods are potatoes and those containing the cereal flours, bread, oatmeal and all the various things that are made from flour. As a rule it is safer to add these foods to the fruits and the vegetables rather than to approach it from the other angle, because the fruits and the vegetables should take precedence.

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