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Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/166

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HOUSEHOLD MANAGEMENT

saliva and digestive juices, weakening their activity. Too long fasting turns the natural alkalinity of the saliva to acidity, resulting in heartburn. Coffee and tea retard digestion. They should not be partaken of at a meal when meat is eaten to any extent. In the aged, however, good tea is undoubtedly beneficial by reducing tissue waste. Wines and light beers in moderation gently stimulate digestion, but strong beers and alcohol greatly prolong the process.

Under normal conditions, it is well that the digestive process should not be prolonged beyond four to four-and-a-half hours. For invalids and persons with "weak stomachs," the time allowed should be much less. It is, therefore, necessary to study the table of digestibility, which has been compiled from the result of repeated experiments by a number of doctors. It must, of course, be remembered that with invalids, the weak, children, and aged persons, digestion is prolonged beyond the normal indicated below.

DIGESTIVE TIME TABLE
Food Preparation Time
Hours Minutes.
Apples, sweet Raw 1 30
,, green Stewed 1 35
Asparagus Boiled 1 30
Barley Soup —— 1 30
,, Boiled 2 0
Beans Boiled 2 30
,, Purée 1 30
Beef, lean Roasted 3 0
,, tender Stewed 2 45
Beefsteak Grilled 3 0
Beef, fresh salted Boiled 2 45
,, old salted ,, 6 0
Beets Boiled 3 45
Brains Boiled 1 35
Bread, fresh Baked 3 30
Butter Melted 3 30
Bread and Butter (with coffee) —— 3 45
Cabbage Roasted 3 30
,, Pickled 4 30
Celery Boiled 1 30
Chicken Boiled 2 0
,, Fricasseed 2 45
Cheese, old —— 3 30
Custard Boiled 2 45
Duck Roasted 4 0
Eel Roasted 6 0