"... were utterly swept aside from the habitual eating of the people, and a simple meat diet substituted in their place... the result would be greatly, very greatly, in favor of that noble-bodied, pure-blooded, and superior race we have had a leaning toward.... The effect of nearly all of these highly artificial dishes is to stimulate and goad on the appetite, distend the stomach, thin the blood, and prepare the way for some form or other of disease. They do not harden a man in his fibre, nor make him any the better in wholesome flesh—as it is often to be noticed of such articles that the greatest eaters of them are by no means the fattest, but often lean and scraggly.... We have been flooded in America, during the last fifteen or twenty years, with vast numbers of doctors, books, theories, publications, &c., whose general drift, with respect to diet, had been to make people live altogether on dry bread, stewed apples, or similar interesting stuff.... [Especially in New England,] the people are prone to be too intellectual, and to be 'ashamed of the carnal body'—running very much to brains, at the expense of the brawn and muscle of their limbs... Let the main part of the diet be meat, to the exclusion of all else... for all the northern and eastern states. We say less about hotter climates, because in those regions of perpetual fruits, there are other points to be considered. And it may be as well to add, that by meat diet, we do not mean the eating of meat cooked in grease and saturated therewith—or in any made dishes—but meat simply cooked, broiled, roasted, or the like. This is the natural eating of man and woman...."
Advice on what to eat, from the newly discovered writings of Walt Whitman, "Manly Health and Training, With Off-Hand Hints Toward Their Conditions" (1858).