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A good many illnesses come from over-eating or eating the wrong kind of food.

A Scout must know how to keep himself fit and active. Once he has got the right kind of muscles, he can remain fit without further special exercising of those muscles, provided that he eats the right kind of food.

In the siege of Mafeking, when we were put on short rations, those of the garrison who were accustomed to eat little at their meals, did not suffer like some people, who had been accustomed to stuff themselves well in peace time and who became weak and irritable. Our food there towards the end was limited to a hunk of pounded-up oats, about the size of a penny bun, which was our whole bread supply for the day, and about a pound of meat and two pints of "sowens", a kind of stuff like paper-hangers' paste that had gone wrong.

The cheapest foods are dried peas, flour, oatmeal, potatoes, rice, macaroni, and cheese. Other good foods are fruits, vegetables, fish, eggs, nuts, and milk, and one can live on these perfectly well with little or no meat.

If you have lots of fresh air, food keeps you healthy. If, on the other hand, you are sitting indoors all day, much food makes you fat and sleepy. In either case you are better for eating moderately. Still, growing boys should not starve themselves but, at the same time, they need not be like that little hog at the school feast, who when asked, "Can't you eat any more?" replied, "Yes, I could eat more, but I've no room to swallow it."

A great weakness nowadays is the amount of medicine which fellows dose themselves with when there is no reason for taking any medicine at all.

The best, medicine is open air and exercise and a big cup of water in the early morning if you are constipated, and a pint of hot water on going to bed.


Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell (Chief Scout, London, UK)

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