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Coolidge in the late 1910s
Calvin Coolidge (1872–1933)

Yogananda Tells the US President What to Eat and How to Work

Coolidge quotations

"Prosperity is only an instrument to be used, not a deity to be whipped and worshipped." - Calvin Coolidge

"When people are bewildered they tend to become credulous." - Calvin Coolidge

Coolidge, the 30th President of the United States, eased the burdens of his office by confining himself to four hours of work a day and by taking a nap every afternoon. He slept ten hours a day. He refused to use the telephone while in office.

The Washington Herald for January 25th, 1927, reported of Yogananda meeting the President (1923-29).

Swami meets President Coolidge

"Swami Yogananda, East Indian educator and philosopher, was presented to President Coolidge yesterday at 12:30 by J. Balfour, second secretary of the British Embassy.

"He was greeted with evident pleasure by Mr. Coolidge, who told him he had been reading a great deal about him. This is the first time in the history of India that a Swami has been received officially by the President.

"Questioned as to his impression of the President after the interview the Swami said: 'I found him looking much healthier than his pictures would indicate . . .'

"During the interview, which lasted several minutes, the Swami said: 'Mr. President, . . . If the Navy is scrapped and the machine guns are destroyed, that will not stop war . . .'"

Swami Outlines Ideal Diet for President Coolidge

Twelve days earlier the Washington Post for January 15, 1927, had printed the following paragraphs about Swami Yogananda's suggested ideal diet for the nation's Chief Executive.


"Ice Water Barred From Regimen of President in Diet

"Swami Yogananda, Hindu lecturer, yesterday prescribed a daily regimen for President Coolidge.

"No meat would be allowed the President under the daily menu prescribed by the Swami, who told the President that he must do no worrying . . . Drinking of ice water was disapproved because it chilled the stomach . . . Not eating because the dinner bell rings, but eating only with the signal of strong hunger, was another precept.

"Other laws by which the chief executive should live, according to the Swami, were: "Morning and evening sit in introspective silence, thinking of your most important engagement with the Soul within.

"Exercise 15 minutes. Walk 30 minutes. Eat in 30 minutes. Study one hour. Meditate one hour and a half. Write two hours. Think four hours. Sleep eight hours, and smile from within all hours."

". . . The daily menu called for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as follows:

"Breakfast – Orange juice, with pulp and seeds, mixed with a tablespoonful of thoroughly ground pecan or pistachio nuts; thick grape fruit juice with two raw eggs beaten into it; toasted bran muffins buttered.

"Lunch – Fruit salad of five dates, handful of seedless raisins, thoroughly mixed with dressing of three tablespoons thick cream and tablespoonful of thoroughly ground almonds or peanut butter. For variety from day to day different fruits or an uncooked vegetable salad or dessert may be eaten, the approved list being Avocado pears, fresh pineapple, apples, oranges, grapefruit, tips of new cauliflowers, shelled green peas, chopped lettuce or spinach, pineapple with whipped cream and nuts.

"Dinner – Fruit salad; a cooked vegetable salad with fresh-made mayonnaise or Thousand Island dressing; nut-meat loaf, made of whole wheat and ground nuts; half a glass of milk with boiled prunes or two tablespoonfuls of raisins or six seeded dates, or thick creamed or boiled rice and chopped dates."

[East West, Volume 2 - 2 and 3 - January - April 1927.]

Yogananda talks for finely ground nuts instead of meat. If you are allergetic to walnuts and other nuts, however, try ground sunflower seeds or other foods rich in essential amino acids (proteins) and which your system stands.

Nutmeat Loaf: A Yogananda Recipe

1 cup English walnuts
1 large potato
1 large onion
1 large carrot
1 cup cooked rice
1 cup milk
1/2 cup tomato juice
1/2 cup chili sauce
1/2 cup chopped parsley
4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Put nuts, potato, onion and carrot through the food-chopper. Add the rice, milk, tomato juice, chili sauce and the seasonings. Mix well. Turn into a well buttered baking dish and bake one hour in a moderate oven. (350 Fahrenheit correspond to ca. 177 centigrades) - Yogananda, from "Food, Health, Intellectual and Spiritual Recipes" in East West, June, 1932 VOL. 4–8.

Take heed: Drop and replace ingredients the organism does not stand. And adjust the mixture to your taste. You can get it better by having a recent and recommendable vegetarian cookbook.

WALNUT SAUSAGES: As it is said: "The sausage is divine; only God knows what's inside it." Yogananda's standard counsel is to replace meat with finely ground nuts [that you can stand].

Eat more ground nuts, rather than too much meat. Don't indulge in very hot or cold drinks. Thus you will avoid colds. Drink more orange juice. - Yogananda, "Message to my Los Angeles Yogoda Students", East West, Volume 1-3 March 1926 - April 1926.

If you already drink a lot of orange juice, maybe you should not lend ear to "Drink more orange juice" indiscriminately. One may vary the juices, for example by adding good vegetable juices too. Find a diet that suits you. People are different, the size and capacity and secretions of internal organs too. Aging has to be adjusted to as well. Some major organs may weaken noticably after you get 55-60 years, for example. And some persons are allergetic to nuts. (There are a few book references below).


Yogananda, Calvin Coolidge nutmeg loaf, walnut sausages, Literature  

Among books on nutrition below are some on organic food. Among the benefits of organic food is that they might help thriving: if not consumer thriving, then the thriving of plants and animals that feed on them, such as happy cows with a more natural-like lifestyle. There is not enough evidence in medical literature to support claims that organic food is safer or healthier than conventionally grown food. The benefits of organic agriculture would depend on how polluted the air and water is where organic produce is grown. Granting that, I would prefer organic food. Several reasons why: organic foods are usually not irradiated and are without industrial solvents and a pesticides that reduce the number of song-birds, and is free from synthetic food additives. It is a friendlier way than abusing the soil and countryside by industrial farming, and hard exploitation of animals.

Organic gardening and farming is not known to gradually destroy ecological balances of the soil, and may maintain biodiversity (a bit longer). Some may get to grow organic food themselves.

Bradley, Fern Marshall, Barbara W. Ellis, and Ellen Phillips, eds. Rodale's Ultimate Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening: The Indispensable Green Resource for Every Gardener. Rodale/Macmillan, 2009.

Food Standards Agency. Manual of Nutrition. 11th ed. London, TSO, 2008.

Hamilton, Geoff. Organic Gardening. New ed. Rev. and updated by Nick Hamilton. London: Dorling Kindersley, 2011.

Horsfall, Mary. Creating Your Eco-Friendly Garden. Collingwood, Vic.: CSIRO Publishing, 2008.

Kirschmann, John D. and Nutrition Search. Nutrition Almanac. 6th ed. New York: McGraw Hill, 2007.

Sharon, Michael. Nutrients A to Z: A User's Guide to Foods, Herbs, Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements. 5th ed. London: Carlton Books, 2009.

Sondhi, Amrita. The Modern Ayurvedic Cookbook: Healthful, Healing Recipes for Life. Vancouver, BC: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2010.

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