Dr Kellogg‘s Prescription
If Cereal Won’t Cool the Libido, Try Surgery – Kellogg, and the Crusade for Moral Fibre
For people the world over, a bowl of corn flakes is the go-to breakfast of choice.
But for the majority of those who look forward to their morning bowl, it will come as a surprise that they were invented to stop people masturbating.
John Harvey Kellogg, who first created the cereal in the late 19th century, originally intended it to be a ‘healthy, ready-to-eat anti-masturbatory morning meal’. Mr Kellogg, a physician, was uncomfortable about sex, believing it was unhealthy for the body, mind and soul.
He was celibate, having never consummated his marriage and keeping a separate bedroom from his wife.
Cornflakes were designed as a bland food that would not “over stimulate” the senses, and thus reduce the risk that the consumer would engage in “self-stimulation,” Corn Flakes were just a small part of the bizarre health regime designed by Kellogg and implemented in his Battle Creek, Michigan Sanitarium.
As a rule, there’s usually more to hapless folk wisdom than bad science, and so it is with myths about masturbation and other aspects of sexuality. In America, a peculiar flowering of such myths took place in the 19th century. Though the predictable culprits — Victorian prudery, evangelical Christianity, entrepreneurialism — are part of the picture, the lesser-known reality is their century-old relationship with whole-grain foodstuffs. That is, thanks to certain influential health advocates back then, sex and diet were inexorably linked and for both, healthy meant bland.