Years later, as a frail teenager in America, Ann suffered the scorn and persecution of a brutal father. When both of her ankles were shattered in a horse and wagon accident, her father gave his consent to have her feet amputated just above the ankles. Fortunately, she had just turned 18, and could reverse his decision. Her one ally in this was a compassionate uncle who carried her into the sunlight every day where she remained alone, immobilized on a long beach, until he returned from work in the evening.
At first she couldn’t move and the pain was terrible, but by reaching down beside the bench she was able to fill her stomach with ordinary grass. Her grandmother had taught her that within such grass was every nutrient required for human health. And when her uncle brought her flowers she ate those as well. “I tried to eat everything green I could find” she said, “and so through the long days I was able to obtain the kind of food which my body seemed to need: that is, both fresh from the earth and untreated with heat.” Sunshine, grasses and the instinct of a little dog who licked her wounds, as well as her own determination to heal, eventually restored her feet to health and strength.
Researching the nutritional value of grass and weeds became a central focus in Ann’s life, and eventually developed into “The Living Foods Lifestyle” and the platform of the Hippocrates program. Her deep dedication to helping others was accelerated when she discovered the powerful healing properties of wheatgrass juice- “the richest nutritional liquid known to man”
She began what her friends called “Ann’s Wheatgrass Route”, voluntarily bringing fresh wheatgrass juice to the homes of chronically ill and elderly people. She would talk to them, listen to them and try to impress upon them that “as long as the spark of life was still within the body, there was not only hope for improvement but possibly permanent relief from pain.” After weeks of wheatgrass, a fresh vegetable meal each evening, and a large dose of Ann’s encouragement, each person on her route, including sufferers of multiple sclerosis, arthritis, emphysema and ulcers, found new health, hope, strength and an interest in life that they hadn’t felt in years.
In 1956 Ann opened the Hippocrates Health Institute in Boston. Her early years had been filled with struggle and toil, yet there she worked even harder and longer than ever, uncompromising in her belief that “health is what one makes of it. It requires a mature attitude and self-discipline to rebuild failing health. Beyond these requirements, a simple and energetic diet, exercise and a healthy outlook are vital.”
Although Ann is gone, her personal experience of the miracles in the grass juices and this simple, but strong philosophy continues to be a healing blessing for humanity today.
Excerpts from WHY SUFFER, How I Overcame Illness and Pain Naturally by Ann Wigmore
Vol 17 Issue 4 page 3