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May 1, 1915


JAMA. 1915;LXIV(18):1500-1501. doi:10.1001/jama.1915.02570440040013

The conviction is growing among students of the processes which go on in the alimentary tract that the micro-organisms which inhabit it are noticeably responsive to changes in the character of the diet. There are many clinical indications that a pronounced alteration in the chemical make-up of the ration is followed promptly by a change in the intestinal flora. The free use of carbohydrates in infant feeding, for example, is not infrequently attended with an alteration in the consistency of the feces indicative of pronounced fermentative changes which speedily disappear after a return to a milk diet restricted in respect to carbohydrates. Although it was long suspected that alterations in the bacterial flora accompany such changes in feeding, it remained for Herter and Kendall,1 among the first to examine this problem with suitable modern methods, to attempt to determine the precise effects on the nature of the microbial life