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Old age is a period of diminished energy. This is its primary, central characteristic, and carries with it a diminution of all the powers of manhood. The machinery of life is wearing out. The old man's activity is less, his paces are slower and his pulse less vigorous than when he was in his prime, his grip is less strong and his way less forceful. He no longer attempts great enterprises, nor could he carry them out if undertaken. He does not readily adapt himself to changes in his environment. His food is more slowly digested and less perfectly eliminated. His bones have become brittle, and when broken unite but slowly and imperfectly. He does not rally readily from even slight attacks of sickness, and finds himself losing each year something of the strength and elasticity of manhood. His teeth are decayed, his cheeks are sunken and his brow is
FRENCH JM. FOOD AND HYGIENE OF OLD AGE. Read by Title in the Section of Physiology and Dietetics, at the Forty third Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association, held at Detroit, Mich., June 7, 1892. JAMA. 1892;XIX(21):595–598. doi:10.1001/jama.1892.02420210001001
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