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Article
November 21, 1931

EARLY KNOWLEDGE OF VITAMINS

Author Affiliations

Philadelphia

JAMA. 1931;97(21):1556. doi:10.1001/jama.1931.02730210054025

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Abstract

To the Editor:  —It is a well known fact that popular intuition often antedates, by many years, scientific discovery and scientific explanation. Before vitamins were dreamed of, experience had shown the value of lime juice in scurvy and of cod liver oil in rickets.In some studies on the Florentine guilds, I found that five centuries before Eyckmann demonstrated the significance of accessory food factors the people of Florence had for themselves discovered the value of vegetables in the diet. The humble cabbage was greatly extolled, as were in turn all the vegetable treasures of the garden and the field, as a panacea for all the aches and pains of poor humanity.But even more indicative of the penetrating power of the common instinct is the following: "It [cabbage] was cooked, and even the water in which it was prepared was deemed a health-giving beverage." This may be looked on

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