First Mention of Cancer—1864
I have been shown that children who practice self-indulgence previous to puberty, or the period of merging into manhood and womanhood, must pay the penalty of nature’s violated laws at that critical period.
Many sink into an early grave, while others have sufficient force of constitution to pass this ordeal. If the practice is continued from the ages of 15 and upward, nature will protest against the abuse she has suffered, and continues to suffer, and will make them pay the penalty for the transgression of her laws, especially from the ages of 30 to 45, by numerous pains in the system and various diseases such as affection of the liver and lungs, neuralgia, rheumatism, affection of the spine, diseased kidneys, and cancerous humors. Some of nature’s fine machinery gives way, leaving a heavier task for the remaining to perform, which disorders nature’s fine arrangement, and there is often a sudden breaking down of the constitution, and death is the result....
Females possess less vital force than the other sex, and are deprived very much of the bracing, invigorating air by their in-doors life. The results of self-abuse in them is seen in various diseases such as catarrh, dropsy, headache, loss of memory and sight, great weakness in the back and loins, affections of the spine, the head often decays inwardly. Cancerous humor, which would lay dormant in the system their lifetime, is inflamed and commences its eating, destructive work. The mind is often utterly ruined and insanity takes place.—An Appeal to Mothers, 27
Calomel and Cancer
My attention was then called to still another case. I was introduced into the sickroom of a young man who was in a high fever. A physician was standing by the bedside of the sufferer with a portion of medicine taken from a vial upon which was written Calomel. He administered this chemical poison, and a change seemed to take place, but not for the better....
The third case was again presented before me. It was that of the young man to whom was administered calomel. He was a great sufferer. His lips were dark and swollen. His gums were inflamed. His tongue was thick and swollen, and the saliva was running from his mouth in large quantities. The intelligent gentleman before mentioned looked sadly upon the sufferer and said:
“This is the influence of mercurial preparations. This young man had remaining sufficient nervous energy to commence a warfare upon this intruder, this drug-poison, to attempt to expel it from the system. Many have not sufficient life forces left to arouse to action, and nature is overpowered and ceases her efforts, and the victim dies.”…
The third case was again presented before me, that of the young man to whom had been administered calomel. He was a pitiful sufferer. His limbs were crippled, and he was greatly deformed. He stated that his sufferings were beyond description, and life was to him a great burden. The gentleman whom I have repeatedly mentioned looked upon the sufferer with sadness and pity, and said:
“This is the effect of calomel. It torments the system as long as there is a particle left in it. It ever lives, not losing its properties by its long stay in the living system. It inflames the joints, and often sends rottenness into the bones. It frequently manifests itself in tumors, ulcers, and cancers years after it has been introduced into the system.”—Selected Messages 2:445, 447, 449.
Those who use flesh foods little know what they are eating. Often if they could see the animals when living and know the quality of the meat they eat, they would turn from it with loathing. People are continually eating flesh that is filled with tuberculous and cancerous germs. Tuberculosis, cancer, and other fatal diseases are thus communicated.—Ministry of Healing (1905).
Meat Eating and Cancer
The tables of many professed Christian women are daily set with a variety of dishes which irritate the stomach and produce a feverish condition of the system. Flesh meats constitute the principal article of food upon the tables of some families, until their blood is filled with cancerous and scrofulous humors. Their bodies are composed of what they eat. But when suffering and disease come upon them, it is considered an affliction of Providence.—Testimonies for the Church 3:563 (1875).
Cancers, tumors, and all inflammatory diseases are largely caused by meat eating.
From the light God has given me, the prevalence of cancers and tumors is largely due to gross living on dead flesh. I sincerely and prayerfully hope that, as a physician, you will not forever be blinded on this subject, for blindness is mingled with a want of moral courage to deny your appetite, to lift the cross, which means to take up the very duties that cut across the natural appetites and passions....
I have the subject presented to me in different aspects. The mortality caused by meat eating is not discerned; if it were, we would hear no more arguments and excuses in favor of the indulgence of the appetite for dead flesh. We have plenty of good things to satisfy hunger without bringing corpses upon our table to compose our bill of fare.—Medical Ministry, 278.
The meat diet is the serious question. Shall human beings live on the flesh of dead animals? The answer, from the light that God has given, is No, decidedly No. Health reform institutions should educate on this question. Physicians who claim to understand the human organism ought not to encourage their patients to subsist on the flesh of dead animals. They should point out the increase of disease in the animal kingdom. The testimony of examiners is that very few animals are free from disease, and that the practice of eating largely of meat is contracting diseases of all kinds—cancers, tumors, scrofula, tuberculosis, and numbers of other like affections.—Counsels on Diet and Foods, 388.
We do not mark out any precise line to be followed in diet, but we do say that in countries where there are fruits, grains, and nuts in abundance, flesh food is not the right food for God’s people. I have been instructed that flesh food has a tendency to animalize the nature, to rob men and women of that love and sympathy which they should feel for everyone, and to give the lower passions control over the higher powers of the being. If meat eating were ever healthful, it is not safe now. Cancers, tumors, and pulmonary diseases are largely caused by meat eating.—Testimonies for the Church 9:159.
Pork and Cancer
God expressly commanded the children of Israel not to eat swine’s flesh. The heathen used this meat as an article of food. God prohibited the Hebrews the use of swine’s flesh because it was hurtful. It would fill the system with humors, and in that warm climate often produced leprosy. Its influence upon the system in that climate was far more injurious than in a colder climate. But God never designed the swine to be eaten under any circumstances....
In order to preserve health, temperance in all things is necessary. Temperance in labor, temperance in eating and drinking. Because of intemperance a great amount of misery has been brought upon the human family. The eating of pork has produced scrofula, leprosy, and cancerous humors. Pork-eating is still causing the most intense suffering to the human race.—Spiritual Gifts 4a:146
Those who subsist largely upon flesh meats inflame the stomach, thereby the blood becomes torpid and impure, headaches and indisposition follow. The system is filled with humors; fevers, scrofula and cancers are the consequences. Especially is this true of those who eat swine’s flesh. Yet so great is the tendency to ignore these evils that few can be brought to realize the true effects of this sort of diet upon the human system.—The Signs of the Times, January 6, 1876.
Physical Injury and Cancer
Satan is constantly devising some new style of dress that shall prove an injury to physical and moral health, and he exults when he sees professed Christians eagerly accepting the fashions that he has invented. The amount of physical suffering created by unnatural and unhealthful dress cannot be estimated. Many have become life-long invalids through their compliance with the demands of fashion. Displacements and deformities, cancers and other terrible diseases, are among the evils resulting from fashionable dress.—Testimonies for the Church 4:634, 635.
Ellen G. White Estate
Washington, D. C
February 12, 1964; revised August, 1990