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The Story of a Humble Doctor Who Saved Thousands of Babies With His Carrot Soup

The name Ernst Moro probably doesn’t ring a bell to a wide audience nowadays, since we don’t read much about him in books and don’t see films about him on television. But doctors know this Austrian pediatrician as an outstanding specialist, whose breakthroughs helped save thousands of babies and are still used in medicine.

Here at Bright Side we were surprised to learn Ernst Moro did so much for children around the world, and now it’s time for you to meet this amazing doctor.

Ernst Moro was born in Ljubljana, Slovenia, which was then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, in 1874. He studied at the university in Graz, Austria, and later became a professor of pediatrics at the University of Heidelberg, Germany. Pediatrics was just developing as independent field of medicine in Europe back in those days, and the mortality rate in infants was very high, reaching nearly 25%. One of the major reasons why thousands of babies died back then was diarrhea. Doctor Moro managed to find a way to save those babies, and his remedy was simple and genius at the same time.

Ersnt Moro suggested giving babies carrot soup cooked according to his own recipe. Moro’s carrot soup has just 3 ingredients:

  • 1.1 lbs of carrots (500 g)
  • Water
  • Salt

To cook the soup you need to wash and clean the carrots and boil them in water until they become soft. Pass the carrots through the sieve and add water so that the total amount of liquid equals to 33 fl oz (1 liter). Add a pinch of salt.

It turned out that this simple soup stopped diarrhea in infants, even in its worst forms, and this recipe helped save thousands of kids. Later, studies showed that the oligosaccharides found in this carrot soup prevented bacteria from sticking to intestinal walls, stopping the diarrhea. With time this remedy was substituted with antibiotics and antidiarrheal drugs, but back in those days, it helped to dramatically increase the survival rate in infants.

Apart from the life-saving carrot soup, there are a bunch of other discoveries by Ernst Moro that became milestones of modern day pediatrics.

  • He discovered the so-called “embracing reflex” or the Moro reflex, that helps to detect spastic cerebral palsy in infants.
  • He coined the term “first trimester” and described the key features of this period of pregnancy.
  • He developed a simple skin test for tuberculosis that was used until the 1960’s.
  • He discovered that the bodies of breast-fed babies fought bacteria more effectively compared to kids who were bottle-fed.

Doctor Moro retired from the University of Heidelberg in 1936 and kept working as a private pediatrician until 1948.

Have you ever heard of doctor Moro or his carrot soup before? Do you know of any other simple products than can work wonders when it comes to your health?

Preview photo credit Wikimedia Commons, Shutterstock