A Good Meal Makes One a Better Person

A stack of books about what and how to eat

Alas, it is a truth that my feelings about and behavior to the people I meet daily are determined more by what and how well I eat than by my good intentions or my character!

The spirit and the body are the soul of man, but I sometimes find it dismaying and a little scary to realize that this spirit is attached to a body that doesn’t always behave well if it hasn’t eaten well.

The British writer Jerome K. Jerome expressed this truth perfectly in his 1889 humorous novel, Three Men In a Boat.

“How good one feels when one is full—how satisfied with ourselves and with the world! People who have tried it, tell me that a clear conscience makes you very happy and contented; but a full stomach does the business quite as well, and is cheaper, and more easily obtained. One feels so forgiving and generous after a substantial and well-digested meal—so noble-minded, so kindly hearted.

“It is very strange, this domination of our intellect by our digestive organs. We cannot work, we cannot think, unless our stomach wills so. It dictates to us our emotions, our passions. . . .

“. . . We are but the veriest, sorriest slaves of our stomach. Reach not after morality and righteousness, my friends; watch vigilantly you stomach, and diet it with care and judgment. Then virtue and contentment will come and reign within your heart, unsought by any effort of your own; and you will be a good citizen, a loving husband, and a tender father—a noble, pious man.”

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