As summer winds down, a last minute spa vacation sounds like a nice treat. From the Autry Family papers we catch a glimpse of the Battle Creek Sanitarium in Battle Creek, Michigan.
Under the direction of Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, it was the most famous health institution in the country, and encouraged the health food industry. Battle Creek was a popular destination for prominent and middle-class Americans in the early 20th century. James L. Autry, II and his wife, Allie Kinsloe Autry visited in 1913 and again in 1916. From the Battle Creek Sanitarium Prescription booklet: “The Battle Creek Sanitarium method is a system of training which aims to restore health by removing the causes of disease and aiding the body to remove the effects of disease by establishing natural conditions.” The booklet outlined a daily program of massage, hydriatic applications (hydrotherapy), exercise, lectures, and diet prescriptions tailored to each guest.
The daily menus are really interesting, encouraging a low-fat, low-protein diet with an emphasis on whole grains and fiber-rich foods.