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July 13, 1929


JAMA. 1929;93(2):119-121. doi:10.1001/jama.1929.02710020035016

Food, clothing and shelter represent fundamental requisites in man's pursuit of well being and happiness. The necessity for food differs in one respect at least from the other factors mentioned in that there is a clearly marked limit to the demand. The opulent person may increase the number of houses that provide shelter and other comforts of life; he may replenish his wardrobe with increasing frequency in accordance with the dictates of his esthetic preferences and the allowance of his income; but the provision of food fuel for the human mechanism finds its limitation in physiologic restrictions that cannot be overstepped without untoward consequences. The energy needs of man, averaging, let us assume, from 2,500 to 3,000 calories, represent the optimum for health and comfort. Only under exceptional circumstances, notably during periods of hard labor, can the intake of food fuel be increased as little as 50 per cent without

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