Pharmacy Fun Fact: October 9


What was the original goal behind the development of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes?

Question: What was the original goal behind the development of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes?

Answer: Encouraging a more chaste lifestyle!

John Harvey Kellogg, a physician who created a sanitorium in Battle Creek, Michigan, believed in the importance of a healthy diet and weight management through lots of exercise, vegetarianism, and an abstinence of gluttonous eating, alcohol, and tobacco. Kellogg and his brother Will invented Kellogg’s Corn Flakes as a part of this healthy lifestyle, which they recommended as an element of a nutritious diet to patients.

Additionally, John Kellogg believed that self-pleasure had a negative impact on the body, mind, and soul. In his book “Plain Facts for Old and Young” published in 1877, Kellogg explained in detail the ill effects of self-pleasure on physical health. Kellogg specifically believed that diet was a way to cure the body of its predilection for masturbatory habits, with corn flakes being a prime element of such a cure.

“A man that lives on pork, fine-flour bread, rich pies and cakes, and condiments, drinks tea and coffee, and uses tobacco, might as well try to fly as to be chaste in thought,” Kellogg wrote in his book.

Furthermore, Kellogg explained that in particular, all spices, condiments, and pickles were evil, and act as an effective way of enticing the mind to unchaste thoughts. For Kellogg, a world without pickles was an unstimulating world that supported a more chaste and spiritual way of life.


Kang L, Pedersen N. Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure Everything. New York, NY: Workman Publishing; 2017.

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