Henry Lindlahr

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Henry Lindlahr

Henry Lindlahr (March 1, 1862 – March 26, 1924) was the author of one of the cornerstone texts of American naturopathic medicine, Nature Cure, which includes topics about disease suppression versus elimination, hydrotherapy, and the importance of fresh air and sun bathing.


Lindlahr was born March 1, 1862 in Cologne, Germany.[1] He devoted himself to healing after being helped by Father Sebastian Kneipp (1821–1897),[2][3] in Europe. Lindlahr was also influenced by the ideas of Bernarr Macfadden.[4] He graduated from the National Medical University in Illinois.[5] In 1902, he opened his practice in Chicago. In 1914, he founded the Lindlahr Sanitarium, in Elmhurst, Illinois.[6][7]

Lindlahr and his institute were criticized by medical health experts for peddling quackery.[4][8][9] For example, Lindlahr was advocate of "Iridiagnosis", a method alleged to diagnosis any disease by examining the eye alone. He also claimed that vaccination was worthless against smallpox and was the cause of cancer, tuberculosis and insanity.[8]

Physician Morris Fishbein noted that "the methods of diagnosis used in the Lindlahr institution were preposterous, the methods of treatment varied and ridiculous." These included dubious treatments such as chiropractic, homeopathy, osteopathy and "strange" diets.[4] He died in Chicago on March 26, 1924.[10]


  • Nature Cure; Philosophy and Practice Based on the Unity of Disease and Cure. Nature Cure Publishing. 1914. reprint General Books LLC, 2009, ISBN 978-1-150-08374-7
  • The Lindlahr Vegetarian Cook Book and ABC of Natural Dietetics. Nature Cure Pub. Co. 1918.; reprint Kessinger Publishing, 2004, ISBN 978-0-7661-8660-6
  • Philosophy of Natural Therapeutics. The Lindlahr Publishing Co. 1921. reprint Kessinger Publishing, 2004, ISBN 978-0-7661-8383-4
  • Iridiagnosis and Other Diagnostic Methods. The Lindlahr Pub. Co. 1922. reprint Kessinger Publishing, 2004, ISBN 978-0-7661-8730-6


  1. ^ Herringshaw, Clark J; Mae F. Herringshaw (1914). Clark J. Herringshaw's City Blue Book of Current Biography: Chicagoans of 1914. Chicago, Ill: American Publishers' Association. p. 215. OCLC 18539361.
  2. ^ "Kneipp: The life of Sebstian Kneipp". Kneipp.de. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  3. ^ "Father Kneipp dead. - His Cold Water Cure at Woereshofen Made Him Famous". New York Times. 1897-06-18. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  4. ^ a b c Fishbein, Morris. (1932). Fads and Quackery in Healing: An Analysis of the Foibles of the Healing Cults. New York: Covici Friede Publishers. pp. 118-119
  5. ^ "Naturopathy and Its Professors (1932)". Naturowatch.org. 1927-11-07. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  6. ^ "About Dr Henry Lindlahr". Irisandyou.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  7. ^ "Lindlahr Sanitarium". Enzyme-facts.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  8. ^ a b Anonymous. (1922). The Propaganda for Reform. JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association 79 (4): 1628.
  9. ^ Yadon, Laurence; Smith, Robet Barr. (2011). Old West Swindlers. Pelican Publishing Company. p. 135. ISBN 978-1-58980-863-8
  10. ^ "Henry Lindlahr, 26 Mar 1924; Public Board of Health, Archives, Springfield; FHL microfilm 1,877,526". Illinois Deaths and Stillbirths, 1916-1947 via FamilySearch. Retrieved 7 June 2016.

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