File Size: 1620 KB
Print Length: 267 pages
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books; Reprint edition (August 1, 2005)
Publication Date: August 1, 2005
Scurvy is the effect of a diet insufficiency of Vitamin C discovered mainly in ascorbic refreshing fruits and vegetables (lemons being high in ascorbic acid). The maddening portion regarding the history of scurvy, as Brown explains, will be how the use of refreshing fruits and vegetables had been used stave off the disease various times (even back in the 1500s) but they were not adopted being an official remedy. The reasons that avoided the official acknowledgment in the true cure for scurvy are many but, inside part, the delays have been due to a lack of controlled studies and the clinical approach to medical research, the habit of smoking of overcrowding ships with men inside anticipation of replacing the dead instead of avoiding the illness, disinterest in obtaining a cure during specific periods of time, in addition to politics that favored specific alleged cures (i. e. wort of malt) that actually had no result on the disease.
Brown looks at the functions of surgeon James Lind, the famous Captain James Make, and Gilbert Blane, the physician an excellent source of social-standing, to be able to present his story upon how the medical puzzle of scurvy was finally solved. The author describes the significance of the disease upon world events, particularly upon the American Revolution in addition to the defeat of Napoleon.
Although the book, which includes epilogue, is only 217 pages, it actually could have been even even more condensed as Brown repeats information a lot. Merely when a point seems thoroughly covered, he'll clarify it again. Sometimes the story gets bogged down by conjecture, particularly when it absolutely was discussed why wort of malt continued to be able to be recommended being a remedy (pp. 167-69).
Regardless of the repeating, the book is informative and well-researched. It includes drawings, an extensive bibliography, resource notes, time line, list, and an appendix which lists the amount regarding Vitamin C present in specific foods commonly consumed throughout the age of sail. This specific appendix is a extremely interesting and useful inclusion to the book., This specific started out really exciting and I learned the lot about scurvy plus the British Navy of the era, both of which were brutal and hard to survive. But the intrigue ended before the half way mark in addition to 80% through, I quit. There was just nothing that hooked me right after the first third in the book. I am, however, glad I read the first part because regarding the knowledge and perspective I gained., It has been a little confusing. I thus wanted it to have a story line. No. Not fiction. But the concept was phenomenal! That filled me in upon each of the zillions of queries I possess always had as a science teacher concerning the history of scurvy. There were some sentences I could not live without. I had to kind them out for personally so I would have them:
When Adm. Sir George Rodney hoisted his flag throughout the Atlantic to join the West Indies fleet inside 1780 he could not have access to known it but he previously with him in his retinue the man who would reform the Navy's policy on antiscorbutics in addition to untimely and ultimately conserve the nation from beat decades later. Although Blaine was a physician in addition to a scholar with fantastic administrative capacity, he has been an irritating fellow to be able to the dozens of other surgeons of lower standing whom he dismissed as irrelevant and unimportant.
Blaine began by taking share of the situation. " I perceive” he had written, “the most anxious in addition to laudable pains taken to husband and preserve from rot all manner of retailers, for example ropes, blocks, spars, gunpowder and arms. But however precious these might be since the indispensable weapons of war, it will certainly not be disputed that human hands are similarly so. Yet it really does not appear this part of duty has already been studied with the just like degree of anxiety as that which regards the inanimate materials of war. " The health regarding the sailors of the fleet was in shambles, and Blaine instinctively realized not only that it could be improved nevertheless that it must end up being improved to understand the prospective of the fleet in addition to improve their odds inside a conflict where these people were outnumbered minus allies.
There were 21 warships and more than 13, 000 mariners stationed inside the west Indies, which had become the significant theater for naval fights involving France Spain, in addition to England during the Conflict of American Independence. Typically the combined French and Spanish language fleets were slightly bigger than the British navy and the British navy was also on duty supporting the British Army in addition to blockade farther north, inside the territory in the 13 Colonies. Although it was your Channel fleet that has been the worst manned in addition to suffered to an alarming and debilitating extent from scurvy and fever, Blaine was appalled at the state of health regarding the British mariners on the western part of the country Indies.
His first take action was to compile in addition to distribute to all the ships surgeons, at his own expense, a pamphlet on hygiene and diet regime based on Lynn's in addition to Cook's recommendations. He entitled it A Short Account Of the very Effective Means Regarding Preserving The fitness of Seamen, in addition to in it he recommended improving shipboard cleanliness, the regular washing of mariners clothes and bedding, removing infectious sailors to private hospitals, and, most important, the inclusion of citrus juices and wort malt as daily dietary supplements. Blaine neutrally observed that Make preferred wort of malt while Lind preferred lemon and orange juice in addition to rob, and concluded that therefore both should be used, showing himself to be a man in tune with the realities of politics in addition to influence.
To understand the problems he was working with Blaine began collecting stats from throughout the navy. He requested each ship's surgeon to report to be able to him monthly on the state of the sailors’ health, with a break down of " diseases, deaths, along with other circumstances of delivers companies. " For the first time, the Admiralty had an accurate picture of how disease was deterioration naval power and how disease rates fluctuated along with the seasons. Fevers went up during the hurricane time of year, while scurvy rates doubled in the late winter\early spring and dropped again by June, when refreshing foods were more easily available. Blaine reported that the death rate from disease and the navy was in an incredible 1 in seven if he showed up, with cases of scurvy outnumbering all other illnesses combined. Of 12, 019 mariners, 1, 518 perished from disease during his first year in the west Indies, and simply 60 died from enemy action. [What really does perished mean? ] It was a staggering loss of manpower that has been caused, in Blaine's thoughts and opinions, by the men residing for months at the time upon " sea victualling". He also reiterated an observation first manufactured by Lynn decades previously. " There is in sea a dismal uniformity of life, " he or she wrote, " favorable to be able to indolence and sadness, and thus tending to hasten the progress and aggravate the symptoms of scurvy"
Page 173, Very enlightening, Garry, the historical aspects regarding health and its effect on our world is attached together wonderfully in this particular tome. scurvy is mostly forgotten but limited human progress for centuries. the fits and starts regarding medical discovery, the human element (some good, several less pleasant ) will be included elegantly. the in the end simplicity in the solution, their application today and the link to vitamin c are very well carried out. outlining the quantity of vitamin c needed to avoid scurvy, the link to pretrip nutritional status, and the content of vitamin c in fruits/vegetables today have been also engaging
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