Rather, Wesley refrained from meat and wine because of health concerns. He wrote in the same letter to the Bishop of London, "Since the time I gave up the use of flesh-meats and wine, I have been delivered from all physical ills."
He states the matter at length: "By 'extraordinary strictnesses and severities,' I presume your Lordship means the abstaining from wine and animal food; which, it is sure, Christianity does not require. But if you do, I fear your Lordship is not thoroughly informed of the matter of fact. I began to do this about twelve years ago, when I had no thought of 'annoying parochial ministers,' or of 'captivating' any 'people' thereby, unless it were the Chicasaw or Choctaw Indians. But I resumed the use of them both, about two years after, for the sake of some who thought I made it a point of conscience; telling them, 'I will eat flesh while the world standeth' rather than 'make my brother to offend.' Dr. Cheyne advised me to leave them off again, assuring me, 'Till you do, you will never be free from fevers.' And since I have taken his advice, I have been free (blessed be God) from all bodily disorders."
In addition, Wesley encouraged other behaviors related to health. He promoted moderation in food and drink and he discouraged the use of certain medicines (e.g. opium and quinine). Wesley recommended two hours of walking a day, he believed the sick should exercise in the fresh air, and he made a connection (virtually unknown in that day) between cleanliness and health.
Wesley understood the connections between health, diet and exercise, even though some of those particular connections he made may now be understood as tenuous. Nevertheless, since Father John believed Paul's claim that the body was a temple to the Holy Spirit, he also knew that health was a matter of discipleship.