John Wesley wrote one of the bestselling medical texts of all-time

United Methodists are indebted to John Wesley for his habits of study and discipline that enabled him to create the writings and teachings about the human body; he conducted many an experiment on himself, eventually leading to his development of over 800 remedies for 300 unique ailments.

Wesley was deeply convicted that God is concerned about our earthly life as well as our heavenly one. To that end, he wrote a medical text for the everyday person titled Primitive Physick. The book discussed the contemporary knowledge about home health remedies and went through 32 editions, making it one of the most widely read books in England. Many of Wesley's suggestions for healthy living remain commonly confirmed. The most significant portion of his philosophy was his conviction on continual observation to support hypotheses.

From Katie Huffman:

Wesley offered some sound advice about specific areas of health, and in fact, was ahead of his time on certain points. Below are a few of his more helpful tips:

Water is the wholesomest of all drinks; quickens the appetite, and strengthens the digestion most.
A due degree of exercise is indispensably necessary to health and long life.
Those who read or write much should learn to do it standing; otherwise it will impair their health.
For coughs, make a hole through a lemon and fill it with honey. Roast it, and catch the juice. Take a tea-spoonful of this frequently.

Whether or not you follow John Wesley's advice on how to cure your next headache, I think it's important to remember the essence of his teachings on health: that "wholeness is the well-working of the body" and that balancing all areas of health is a spiritual process.


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