FEASTS AND GIFTS
Natural Food Store and Del!
3827 DUNLAVY 528-8905
LONG ON NUTRITION
'Let thy food be thy medicine, and let thy medicine be thy food." — Hippocrates
'The human body may be compared with
a clay sculpture. Corresponding to the
internal wire frame of the sculpture, we
have a bony skeleton, hinged here and
there to permit motion. In order to give
this structure life and being, there are
some 10 trillion (10,000,000,000,000)
cells scattered throughout, occupying,
together with the body fluids, every
available interstice. Each cell carries out
some specialized function. They range
from those of the simple fibroblast,
which is busily at work keeping the reinforcing material in good shape, and the
lymphocytes and other white cells, which
destroy invading bacteria and cancer
cells, to the highly complex cells of the
brain, which formulate and transmit the
orders for all this corporate activity and
which interact with one another in such a
way as to fashion our consciousness,
provide our memory bank, and permit us
to think and reason."
—Ewan Cameron and Linus Pauling,
Cancer and Vitamin C
"If every cell in the body gets the nutrients it needs," says Houston nutritionist
Dr. Ruth Yale Long, "every cell will be
healthy, every organ will be healthy, and
the organism as a whole will be healthy."
The idea of cellular health and the link
between diet and disease goes back to
Hippocrates and the ancient Greeks: "Let
thy food be thy medicine, and thy medicine be thy food." In the 60's, the writings of nutritionist Adele Davis [Let's
Eat Right to Stay Fit and Let's Get Well)
provided food for thought on the American diet, and turned thousands of families
on to vitamins and natural foods. Her
writings changed a lot of lifestyles and at
least one career-Ruth Yale Long, a Houston high school English teacher retired
from her job to become a nutritionist.
Long recalls the process. "It was right
after WWII when the American diet
changed. I went right along with the
switch from garden vegetables and
whole grains to convenience and 'instant'
Her health, she says, deteriorated with
her diet. "I was drinking coffee and
Virginia Rail is the Antioch intern at
Breakthrough this semester. She is a
BY VIRGINIA RALL-
eating sweets every two hours in the
teacher's lounge with my colleagues.
Then, 13 years ago," she says, "someone
handed me an Adele Davis book. I read it
and changed my diet overnight from junk
food to good food. Within two weeks I
was walking down the hallways of my
school and looking in the doorways wondering whether anyone else felt as good as
When she retired from teaching in
1975, she launched herself into a second
career in nutrition. "I read everything I
could about nutrition and medicine in
medical and nutritional journals in the
library." Eventually she went back to
school and received two master's degrees
ized and filled with all the vitamins and
food supplements for her own diet: selenium, riboflavin, bioflavonoids, chromium,
calcium-magnesium, pantothenic acid,
and the alphabet of vitamins A — K.
In 1977, Ruth Long began teaching
her own nutrition classes in adult extension programs, churches, and the Houston
Community College. "My first class had
three students, my latest ones have had
70." Ever the educator, she founded the
Nutritional Education Association, Inc,
to meet her students' requests for copies
of her talks.
"I always spoke from one-word notes,
I had to sit down and write these lectures
into comprehensive books," she says.
This food program is a way of life—not a crash
diet to go on for a week, or a month, or a year.
Good nutrition must be continued forever.M
in nutrition—one from Texas Southern
University and the other from the University of Texas School of Public Health.
Her master's thesis on "Nutrition and
Cancer" was later expanded into the subject for her doctoral thesis and several
books on the subject, including Nutrition
and Cancer and No More Cancer.
Long believes the way to a correct diet
is through natural foods and food supplements. "I feel that because of the processing and spraying that our food has been
subjected to it is impossible for our
bodies to maintain and regenerate perfect
health with our vitamin and mineral supplements."
Long is a woman who practices what
she preaches. In her refrigerators—she has
three—are bicycle baskets stuffed with
bags of whole grain flours, dried beans,
fruit preserves, nuts and her perishable
staples. Fresh vegetables, milk, homemade yogurt, eggs and fruits line the
inside door and shelves. No drinks, frozen
dinners, packaged anything. Except for
ice cream (her husband says it's his).
Instead of a medicine chest filled with
pills of aspirin* Dristan, or Alka-seltzer^
she has a fishing tackle box, neatly organ-
Within the framework of the association,
she rewrote her lessons into 13 units.
They have become a home study course
in nutrition, covering areas such as: basic
diet plan; vitamins and minerals; stress,
depression, and mental problems; specialized health problems—heart disease, allergies, arthritis, low and high blood sugar,
and cancer; weight control; and hyperactivity, slow learning, and learning
disabilities in children.
Throughout these books/lessons lies a
theme of prevention and therapy. In her
words, "The body, if given a chance, will
heal itself." She stresses, "This food program is a way of life—not a crash diet to
go on for a week, or a month, or a year.
Good nutrition, which includes food and
food supplements, must be continued
forever. You will recover from most every
ailment with this food program. But if we
eat this way for awhile, feel better, then
go back to the average American diet
we'll get sick again, because it is the
average American diet of processed and
refined food that caused our illness in the
A change in lifestyle and certainly a
change in outlook must accompany the