Any information which aids in securing an answer to the question as to what constitutes an optimum diet is of the utmost importance. The employment of the biological method of investigation has been exceedingly fruitful of results in this field. By this method the diet is submitted to actual feeding tests with experimental animals and their behavior thereon is observed. For this purpose the rat is most frequently employed on account of its relatively small food consumption, its omniverous habit, and its comparatively short reproductive cycle and span of life. It is thus possible to get the life histories of these animals for several generations on a given diet in a comparatively short time. This is, moreover, a field of investigation in which the English speaking people are the acknowledged leaders. Instantly the names of Hopkins, Drummond, Osborne, Mendel, McCollum, Sherman, and others, are called to mind in connection with this line of work. Recognition and study of the substances designated vitamins have revealed relationships in nutrition hitherto unsuspected. It would have been quite impossible to disclose these newer fields of investigation by means of the usual methods of chemical experimentation.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1924 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Anderegg, L. T.
"Diet in Relation to Reproduction and Rearing of Young,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 31(1), 299-308.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol31/iss1/88