The Function Of Protein In The Human Body,
Protein is that substance of the living body which best lends itself
to the various transformations brought about by the body's formative
forces, so that what results from the transformed protein substance
appears in the structures of the organs and of the whole organism. To
be suitable for such use, protein must have the inherent capacity to
lose whatever form may result from the nature of its material
constituents the moment it is called upon, within the organism, to be
of service to a form the organism needs.
We thus perceive that in protein the forces proceeding from the
natures and mutual relationships of hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and
carbon, disintegrate. The inorganic chemical bonding ceases and in the
disintegration of the protein, organic formative forces begin to work.
Now these formative forces are dependent on the etheric body. Protein
is constantly on the point of being taken up in the activity of the
etheric body or of being precipitated out. Removed from the organism
to which it once belonged, it assumes the tendency to become a
compound, subject to the chemical forces of hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen
and carbon. Protein that remains a constituent of the living organism
suppresses this tendency in itself and aligns itself to the formative
forces of the etheric body.
Man consumes protein as a constituent of the food he takes. The Pepsin
of the stomach transforms the protein which is taken in from outside,
to peptides, these, to begin with, are soluble protein substances.
This transformation is continued by the pancreatic juice.
The protein ingested as a constituent of food is, to begin with, a
foreign body in the human organism. It still contains residual
activities from the etheric processes of the living being whence it
was derived. These must be entirely removed from it. It now has to be
absorbed into the etheric activities of the human organism.
Hence, as the human process of digestion takes its course, we are
dealing with two kinds of protein substances. At the beginning of this
process the protein is foreign to the human organism. At the end it
belongs to the organism. Between these two conditions there is an
intermediate one, where the protein received as food has not yet
entirely discarded its previous etheric actions, not yet entirely
assumed the new. At this stage it is virtually completely inorganic.
It is then subject to the influences of the human physical body alone.
This physical body of man, in its form a product of the ego
organization, is the bearer of inorganically active forces. It thus
has a lethal effect on anything that is alive. Everything that enters
the realm of the ego-organization dies. Hence, in the physical body
the ego-organization incorporates purely inorganic substances. In the
human physical organism these do not work in the same way as in
lifeless nature outside man; but they work inorganically, that is to
say, causing death. This deadening effect upon the albumen takes place
in that part of the digestive tract where trypsin, a constituent of
the pancreatic juice, is active. That inorganic forces are concerned
in the action of trypsin, may be gathered also from the fact that it
unfolds its activity with the help of alkali.
Until it meets the trypsin in the pancreatic fluid, the albuminous
nourishment continues to live in a manner foreign to the human
organism, namely, according to the organism from which it is derived.
Meeting the trypsin, it becomes lifeless. But it is only for a moment,
as it were, that the protein is lifeless in the human organism. Then
it is absorbed into the physical body in accordance with the
organization of the ego. The latter must have the force to carry over
what the albumen has now become, into the domain of the human etheric
body. In this way the protein constituents of food become formative
material for the human organism. The foreign etheric influences,
pertaining to them originally, leave the human being.
For the healthy digestion of the protein constituent of food, man must
possess a sufficiently strong ego-organization to enable all the
protein, which the human organism needs, to pass into the domain of
the human etheric body. If this is not the case, the result is an
excessive activity of this etheric body. The quantity of protein
prepared by the ego organization, which the etheric body receives, is
insufficient for its activity. The consequence is that the activity
orientated towards enlivening that protein absorbed by the
ego-organization overwhelms that protein still containing foreign
etheric effects. The human being receives in his own etheric body a
multitude of influences that do not belong to it. These must now be
excreted in an abnormal manner. This results in a pathological process
This pathological excretion appears in albuminuria. The albumen
which should be received into the domain of the etheric body is
excreted. It is albumen, which, owing to the weakness of the
ego-organization, has not been able to assume the well-nigh lifeless
Now the forces in man which bring about excretion are bound up with
the domain of the astral body. In albuminuria, the astral body is
forced to carry out an activity for which it is not properly adapted,
its activity becomes atrophied in those regions of the organism where
it ought properly to unfold. This is in the renal epithelia. The
degeneration of the epithelia in the kidneys is a symptom showing that
the activity of the astral body which is intended for these organs has
It is clear from all this where the healing process for albuminuria
must intervene. The power of the ego-organization in the gland of the
pancreas, which is weak, needs to be strengthened.