The Homeopathic Diet & The Sketch Of A Complete Image Of The Disease So As To Make Possible Its Cure By Homeopathy
The Lesser Writings of C.M.F. Von Boenninghausen
By Clemens Maria Franz von Bönninghausen
The Lesser Writings of C.M.F. Von Boenninghausen
Clemens Maria Franz von Bönninghausen
Boericke & Tafel, 1908 - Homeopathy - 350 pages
Homoeopathic Diet and the Sketch of a Complete
Image of the Disease so as to Make Possible
its Cure by Homoeopathy.
Published for the Lay Public.
Second Augmented Edition, Miinster, 1833.
In answer to a frequently expressed wish, we have in this re-
print of the two pamphlets which formerly appeared separately
(namely, on Homoeopathic Diet and the sketch of this complete
image of the disease) joined the two together, after having made
such additions and changes as appeared useful or necessary.
The continued lack of Homoeopathic physicians, in spite of the
continued spread of this curative method, may have been the
cause why a large edition of these pamphlets was so soon ex-
hausted, and that there is a frequent call for the work. Patients
who live at a distance from Homoeopathic physicians have contin-
ual need both of the one pamphlet and the other, since the Ho-
HOMOEOPATHIC DIBT. 269
moec^thic physicians are so busily occupied that it is absolutely
impossibk for tbem to satisfy all the calls for information on
these heads by written direction.
It is of course always best if the physician can see the patient
himself, as he will then notice many things which cannot so well
be expressed so distinctly and definitely in any report; he will also
then be able to confine himself to some few questions which will
decide the choice of the remedy that is most suitable. Such a sep.
aration of the essential from the non-essential cannot be expected
from one who is not a physician, and he must on that account
communicate everything at all morbid which he has observed in
himself. Nevertheless it is always advisable that the physician,
wherever it is at all feasible, should draw up the first sketch of
the image of the disease (especially in chronic troubles), after
this by the help of this guide the later communications can easily
be given with the necessary completeness.
As to diet, of late a certain indulgence has been granted, which
is not always to be approved of, and where there is any doubt, it
is surely better to be a little too strict than to be too indulgent, as
experience has frequently shown that the injuries caused by in-
dulgence are diflScult to repair.
Miinster, June, 1833.
C. V. B.
General Homoeopathic Diet.
'' In view of the minimal doses of medicines which are at once
so necessary and so useful in Homoeopathic treatment, it may easily
be understood that everything in the diet and the order of man's
life must be removed which might at all have a medicinal e£Fect,
in order that the minimal doses may not be overcome and extin-
guished or at least be disturbed.*' — S, Hahnemann's Organon,
It is not the diet which the Homoeopathic physician prescribes
which restores the patient's health. Only gross ignorance or the
intentional spreading of an untruth can claim that, as opponents
of this curative method sometimes do, that it is merely the Ho-
moeopathic diet which avails; to which the humiliating answer is
frequently given that in such a case the allopaths act in an inde-
fensible manner in not imposing an equally strict diet.
270 HOMCBOPATHIC DIET.
Although it is undeniable that certain diseases (limited in their
period) pass over without danger if the proper diet is observed,
yet this cannot be called a cure, since its duration is not short-
ened in this manner. But these very diseases are the ones which
most allopaths keep for themselves, while they are willing to
hand over the chronic diseases (/. ^., those diseases which, with-
out a healing medicine at most, only change their form, but only
come to an end with the last breath of the patient), for they
know that the cure in such cases is difficult and can be expected
to result not from the diet, but only from an effective medicine.
The paragraph of the Organon which we have quoted above
gives us the only point of view from which the Diet of Homoeo-
pathy is to be considered. This ought to bring back man, espe-
cially th^sickmdJi, to a natural mode of living and should prevent
the disturbance of the action of the medicine prescribed for his
cure by other medicinal irritants. On this account there is no
prescription as to the quantity of food to be taken, since the
wants and the inclination of the patient in this respect supply the
correct standard. Only the kind of food to be taken is defined by
the physician, and this the more since in the usual mode of living
of civilized people the medicinal condiments, with articles of food
otherwise harmless, are so customary that we seldom find them
pure. And yet it is plain that every article of food ought to be
free from medicinal virtue, since this causes variations in his con-
dition, and thus must make healthy men more or less ill, even if
this should be only transitory.
Starting from this position. Homoeopaths in their dietetic
directions would at first naturally forbid many things which
later experience caused ihem to see are less injurious. The long
continued use of many medicinal substances in many cases dulls
the susceptibility for them, so that the vital force eventually is no
more affected thereby. Even more important in this direction is
the observation frequently made, that as a rule only such medici- •
nal substances act in a disturbing manner, on substances given
before as have Homoeopathic relation to it, /. e,, which have the
virtue and tendency of producing similar effects on healthy per-
sons. On this alone the antidotal virtue rests which a number of
medicines show, and by this may be explained how it comes
that many an otherwise antidotal substance passes by without caus-
ing any disturbance, if it only leaves untouched the present mor-
bidly excited parts of the organism on which the medicine is in-
tended to act.
HOMCEOPATHIC DIET. 271
Otherwise it has become known by many facts and observa-
tions that even the potencies which are at this day carried higher,
and which are the especial offence and object of ridicule of in-
vestigators, who merely speculate and have become alienated
from quiet experiments, have so much increased the intensity
(doubtless immaterial) of the medicinal virtue that all grossly
material influences can affiect it but little or not at all.
All this is now, of course, taken into consideration in the diet to
be, observed, and Homoeopaths have on this account been able to
yield a good deal of late, which they had to forbid before, from
fear of doing harm. This is especially the case with chronic
patients, who are forbidden, besides the actual medicines of all
kinds, only coffee and strong iea^ heating drinks, imported spices
and strong odors, especially that of Camphor.
Nevertheless, it may not be ivithout its use to enumerate for the
patient, as well as for healthy persons, everything which in any
way has medicinal virtues, and which in consequence may act in-
juriously on the health or which may injuriously act on the
medicines taken. There are also so many acute diseases, as also
some of the chronic diseases, which cause a great susceptibility
for such disturbing influences and the excess of which even at
times amounts to actual idiosyncracies. We» therefore, subjoin a
pretty complete list, as well of things allowed as of things forbid-
den, with the remark that the exceptions permitted according to
the nature of the disease and the Homoeopathic medicines used is
left most safely to the physician in charge; but whatever is
printed in capitals (/. ^., doubly underscored) must usually be
Beef, mutton, venison of all kinds (but it must not have the
haut gout), even the meat of the wild boars and their young,
raw hams, not the fat, chickens, turkeys, capons (which have
not been fattened too much), grown pigeons, not too young, and,
with patients who are not suffering from troubles of the stomach
or the bowels, also occasionally some roast veal is not in-
jurious. But these meats, as well as all other food permitted.
272 HOMCKOPATHIC DIBT.
must not be spcnled by being seasoned with medicinal sub*
stances (e. g.» spices). Jelly, also prepared without spices, as
well as smoked and pickled meat, are also permitted.
Pish are to be eaten only in moderation, and only at noon, not
in the evening. The fish most easily borne are carp, pike, trout,
crucian, barbel, tench, white fish, gudgeons, mullet, etc., if
they are quite fresh and prepared in a simple manner. Less to
be recommended, especially where there are stomach or cutaneous
troubles, are the seafish, as well the pickled and smoke kinds, as
also oysters are only admissible if they have been properly soaked
in fresh water, and all have to be partaken of very sparingly.
Of other animal food there are also permitted butter, raw or
soft-boiled eggs, milk, which is most safe if first boiled (since it
frequently contains medicinal virtues from the food of the
animals), butter-milk, clabber, wkey, fresh cheese (not odor-
ous), and unseasoned, or, still better, cottage-cheese.
Well-baked and unspiced bread of clean wheat, without any
harmful admixtures of ergot and darnel, and baked without the
addition of potash, as also all dishes made of flour without spices
and not too fat, are harmless. Rye-bread generally agrees better
with patients than wheat-bread; even pumpernickel does not
harm those that have been used to it.
Among the vegetables permitted are potatoes, ground-nuts,
cole-rabi, beets, cauliflower, cabbage and kale, spinach, legu-
minous plants, carrots, oyster- plants, parsnips and turnips, when
they are prepared without spices and with only a moderate
amount of fat. So also the prepared vegetables, as sour-krout,
pickled beans, etc., are harmless. To this class also belong rice,
maize, grits and groats of wheat, oats and barley, as also millet,
peas, lentils and beans; the latter, because they cause flatulence,
must often be used very moderately; then also sago and salep.
Also the salads which are cooked, but not the raw salads, may
be eaten; so also some of the potherbs lose their medicinal virtues
by cooking, and may then be used without injury, though it will
be safest to do without them.
As a rule, all fruit when fulJy ripe, if the sweet varieties, arc
chosen, may be safely eaten, either cooked or raw. Among these
HOMCEOPATHIC DIET. 273
we would especially enumerate: cherries, peaches, apricots (but
all these cooked without their stones), apples, pears, grapes,
raspberries, mulberries, melons, pumpkins, oranges (used with-
out their peelings), pineapples, dates, figs and gooseberries. In
most cases, but not always, currants may be eaten, as also straw-
berries, cooked cranberries and whortleberries, cooked quinces
and fresh walnuts and hazelnuts. Just as harmless are preseryed
fruits, when put up with pure sugar, as also iced fruits, unless
the same should be forbidden, owing to their coldness, where
there is weakness of the stomach.
The most natural and harmless drink is pure water that has
been boiled and afterward cooled again; this may be rendered
agreeable to the taste by adding sugar, raspberry juice, toast, or
anv condiments which are not forbidden.
Next to this we would place milk, with butter-milk and whey,
though the latter must be freed from its medicinal qualities by
Besides these there are permitted small- beer, which is not
brewed too strong and has well fermented, as also the other
beers similarly prepared, unspiced hot beer, decoctions of dried
fruits, the gruel of oats, barley or rice, unspiced chocolate, tea of
cocoa shells, milk of almonds (but without any bitter almonds in
it); then also broth of beef, of chickens and of pigeons, which
must also be unseasoned and not too fat.
Whoever thinks that they cannot do without some drink like
coflFee, besides chocolate, may without ill effects drink a decoction
of toasted carrots, wheat, rye or barley, but there must not be
any addition of coffee, chickory or Swedish coffee- vetches.
In most of the chronic diseases a mixture of five parts of water
with one part of wine may be used as a daily beverage.
Vinegar, even if quite pure and unadulterated, can never be
used as a beverage and seldom as an addition to it.
V. TOII.ET ARTICLES.
Among these but few can be granted to the Homoeopathic
Instead of pomade a piece of raw pork-fat, where a great dry-
ness df the hair sets in.
274 HOMCKOPATHIC DIET.
For cleaning the teeth, the patient should use pure water and
finely powdered charcoal, or the coal trom burned bread, without
the addition of any perfume.
Instead of fumigating the rooms, a frequent airing of the rooms
and cleanliness in the same must serve.
For baths we substitute a quick washing off with clear water
and unperf umed white soap.
Finally whoever is accustomed to the use of tobacco need not
give it up altogether, but it will be well to moderate an excessive
use of the same.
VI. CJLOTHING AND MODE OF UFE.
The clothing ef the patient ought to be comfortable, and no
warmer and thicker than feels comfortable to him.
Moderate exercise, especially in the open air, is very desirable;
even a dance in pleasant company, if not too exhausting, and
when the strength permits it, will not as a rule prove harmful to
the chronic patient.
As a rule he ought to retain as much as possible his accustomed
mode of living, in so far as this is not opposed to the express di-
rections; he should sleep, eat and drink according to his desire,
neither more nor less; he should not withdraw from any innocent
social amusement; the endeavor should be to keep the mind as
well as the body in as comfortable a state as possible, which
furthers the cure more surely than any compulsion would do.
He should seek to fill out his time as far as possible with light
and pleasant employments.
Rare exceptions from the present general rules must be left to
the determination of the physician in the particular cases.
Very young or soft boiled veal, fat pork, the meat of ducks and
geese (the latter three are especially harmful in cutaneous dis-
orders), liver, kidneys and brain; any meat which is very fat or
such as has become medicinal by the addition of spices or piquant
sauces, e.g., sausages, sour roast of rabbits or geese, beefsteak,
carbonades, field fares, larks and all animals that have become
excessively fat through fattening.
HOMOEOPATHIC DIET. 275
As to fish, it is safest to avoid them altogether. The most in-
jurious are eel and salmon, both when fresh and when smoked or
pickled; caviar, cod-fish, turtles and shrimps. The roe and the
milt of certain fish have been found, particularly harmful, espe-
cially those of HERRINGS, perch and barbs.
Other animal food that must be avoided is hard boiled tggs,
things baked from eggs, raw milk, cream, old stinking or highly
seasoned cheese, especially Limburger cheese and grbbn chbbsb,
First of all, all vegetable food and salads which are not cooked
are forbidden, with the single exception of the fruit which was
not excepted above. Then also all bread which has not been well
fermented, or is sticky, or badly raised, or such as is impure from
spices, potash, soap, ergot, darnel or cockle. So also all cakes
and cookies, especially such as are very rich, or prepared with
spices, honey and the like, and such as are decorated with metallio
leaflets or colors, which are often actually poisonous.
Among the injurious vegetables are chestnuts, old cole-rabi.
beets, artichokes, asparagus, shoots of hops, corn-salad, parsley,
chervil, chickory, rub, garden-cress, water-cress, horse-radish (so
long as it remains sharp), onions of all kinds, wood-sorrel,
orache celery, purslane, mustard, large and small radishes,
truffles, morils and champignons, etc.
So also ALL spices whatever name they may have and whether
belonging to the exotic and dry class or to the potherbs, are all
to be avoided, as they all have more or less medicinal properties.
Among the former are cinnamon, saffron, ginger, pepper,
NUTMEG, VANILLA, RED PEPPER, BAY LEAVES, SOYA, LEMONS,
CITRON, BITTER ALMONDS, etc. ; but in the latter class we enumer-
ate marjoram, thyme, sage, basilicum, balm-mint, etc. All food
(also sauces, cakes, preserves and ice-creams) containing such in-
gredients thereby acquire more or less medicinal powers, which
can only act in a disturbing or even destructive manner on the
dose of Homoeopathic medicine, and they must therefore be
Unripe fruit and frequently also acid fruit does not agree with
Homoeopathic treatment. The patient must, therefore, not only
276 HOMCEOPATHIC DIET.
abstain from unripe fruit, but also, in cases which will be more
closely pointed out by the physician, from currants, strawberries
and medlars, as also from the acid varieties of apples, pears and
cherries, and from lemons.
To this class also belong cucumbers, which must usually be
forbidden, as also raw cranberries and whortleberries, haws,
elderberries, raw quinces, old English walnuts, stale hazelnuts,
almonds (especially the bitter ones), olives and St. John's
Among beverages, coffee, distinguished by its quality of anti-
doting by far the greater number of medicines and powerfully
affecting the whole organism, stands first as forbidden, and can
never be permitted. The same must be said of the coffee which
is prepared from chickory, from acorns or from the Swedish
Less injurious, but nevertheless but rarely permitted, is the
common Chinese tea, whether green or black. So also all the
decoctions prepared from elder-flowers, chamomilla, bal-
DRIAN, speedwell, millefolium, MELISSA. PEPPERMINT, FEN-
NEL, ANISE, COUCHGRASS, LIPER'S HERBS, PECTORAL TEA, ICE-
LANDIC MOSS, are among the forbidden enjoyments, as all of them
have more or less medicinal qualities, and would also counteract
the Homoeopathic doses.
Furtheimore, we have to avoid all the so-called strong
DRINKS, e. g. WINE, COGNAC, ARAC, BRANDY, RUM, LIQUERS OF
ALL KINDS, BISHOP. PUNCH. CARDINAL, GROG, CHANDEAU,
SPICED WINE, BIRCH-BEER, MEAD etc, and especially all the
ELIXIRS, CORDIALS, BITTERS, which are often injurious even to
healthy persons, and all of which contain more or less of medi-
Beer, which is otherwise quite harmless, when pure and un-
adulterated, often has imparted to it deleterious qualities by the
addition of stupefying, intoxicating and heating herbs, which
make it injurious to the health. Therefore, such beers, as well
as double beer, and beers compounded with ginger, ledum
or other spices, are forbidden.
Furthermore, during Homoeopathic treatment all vegetable
ACIDS (the juice of lemons, wood-sorrel, common sorrel, bar-
berries, sour apples, sour cherries, etc.), and all kinds of vin-
HOMOEOPATHIC DIET. 277
HGAR, HERB-VINEGARS, compounded with sharp substances or
spices, as also the sauces prepared therewith, or salads and other
dishes, are vetoed.
V. TOII.ET ARTICLES.
Besides the substances above mentioned, luxury and fashion
have introduced many things into life, especially into the life of
the well-to-do portion of humanity, which not only in no way
comport with Homoeopathic diet, but exert even a hurtful in-
fluence on healthy persons, while many are ignorant of their
Among these are the many^ kinds of perfumes made of amber-
gris, musk and many kinds of ethereal oils, as also similar
pomades, soaps, smelling mixtures and washes, naphthas, eau de
cologne, oil of macassar, rouge and other paints and whatever
else these superfluities may be called.
Besides these, we find tooth powders, tooth washes and
ESSENCES made from medicinal substances (quinine, sandal-wood,
cascarilla, ambergris, cream of tartar, magnesia, etc.), and these
must be avoided.
Then also all fumigation by whatever means this may be
effected (fumigating powder, pastils, vinegar, juniper berries, in-
cense, etc.), and even the smelling of lighted sulphur matches
and other matches, or the smoke of extinguished tapers and
lamps ought to be avoided. Snuff also is disallowed all the more
since it usually contains also other ingredients of a medicinal
Finally we should abstain from baths of all kinds, even the
warm foot-baths, and especially such as have herbs, ashes or
similar substances added to the water, so all in all, external ap-
plications, ointments, EMBROCATIONS, PILLOWS OF HERBS, FO-
MENTATIONS, vesicatorihs, etc., which are all of them injurious,
or, at best, useless. The same applies without exception to all
domestic remedies. Most carefully should we guard against
the smell of camphor, which suppresses nearly all medicines.
VI. CLOTHING AND MODE OF LIFE.
In general, all excess is injurious, as well in having the cloth-
ing too light as in having it too heavy, the comfort of the patitnt
is almost the only criterion.
278 THE CURE OF ASIATIC CHOLERA.
Besides this, ear-rings and necklaces of amber, corals, jet, hips,
fruits of various kinds, or perfumed substances, even those made
of metals, are injurious, because they are not without medicinal
virtues, and they must therefore be avoided. In rare cases the
same may be said of dyed clothes, especially those dyed black, as
these frequently act in a disturbing manner, so that it is advisable
never to bring them into juxtaposition with the body without
With respect to the mind and spirit, everything passionate and
straining is very injurious, and should be carefully avoided. Not
only vexation, grief, fright, anger, etc., but also excessive joy
and other pleasant affections act in a disturbing manner. So also
every strenuous exertion of the mind through reading, and espe-
cially through card-playing, is forbidden ; but also ennui, which
induces all manner of thoughts about the state of health.