The wise, for care, on exercise depend, God never made his work for man to mend.
It’s a quotation of Dryden made by this essay.
Another version is from wikiquote: John Dryden, where for care is actually for cure.
The wise, for cure, on exercise depend; God never made his work for man to mend.
It’s saying men should exercise, but what is the meaning and purpose of for cure or for care.
The maxim itself is saying the men should exercise as a means of attaining better health, as opposed using to man-made medicines. It today’s world, he might rephrase it to something like:
The wise, for weight control, on exercise depend; God never made our waistlines for diet pills to mend.
I suppose he’s saying that it’s best to try exercise first; I’m not sure he’s going so far as to say, “Never trust doctors about anything at all,” but I’d have to do more research into his world views to say for sure. If I was feeling under the weather, though, it sounds like he’d recommend a brisk walk and some fresh air before advising that I reach for the aspirin bottle.