Diet To Be Used In Sexual Abstention

Some persons, by reason of their calling, i.e., the Catholic monks and nuns who are bound by their vows, are obliged to lead a life of sexual abstemiousness. As has already been stated in our work on “Old Age Deferred,” this may in some persons, although by no means invariably so, cause severe injury to the nervous system. Certain precautionary measures are therefore necessary, and much can be done in this connection by means of a rational diet. Foods containing much nuclein and phosphorus, such as meat, fish, and eggs, are to be avoided; also certain green vegetables, such as celery and asparagus, which, owing to their action upon the bladder, may have an excitant effect. Foods having laxative properties are advisable, since constipation may have an irritant stimulating effect by causing congestion of the pelvic organs. For such persons a vegetable diet would be indicated, but, since in subjects who do not spend much time in the open air—and this is particularly the case with many of the inmates of nunneries—a strictly vegetable diet may favor the development of tuberculosis, a milk and vegetable diet, with the addition of a limited quantity of eggs, would be preferable. It is hardly to be supposed that such a moderate addition of eggs could have an excitant effect, especially in the case of persons who have been trained to such a vocation. The greatest moderation in eating and drinking is a prime requisite in combating sexual desire, and, as Father Cats remarked : “Die weynigh eet en minder drinkt, die is het, die de luster dwingt.”