How healthy are you? Although not all illnesses are caused by a faulty diet, I am surprised by the ailments modern society needlessly suffers from, and am convinced that although not always, we nonetheless frequently bring them upon ourselves by our lack of wisdom in the food choices we make.
“Worship the Lord your God, and His blessing will be on your food and water. I will take away sickness from among you, and none will miscarry or be barren in your land. I will give you a full life span.” (Exodus 23:25-26 NIV)
God gives His people both wisdom, and the blessings that follow from living according to it. Yet so many of us these days aren’t being particularly wise in what we consume. Think about it: what do you typically eat? Is it the salted, sugared, artificially preserved and otherwise highly processed stuff our grocery shelves are stocked with which advertisers relentlessly market–because that’s what the majority of people eat, at least in part? Unless you are in a small minority, you probably do not home-prepare from scratch what you consume from healthy, basic and wholesome ingredients. Yet that is the way to both remain healthier, and survive off of a smaller grocery budget (surely you can use the remaining funds for something else!).
God made us a certain way–our bodies require specific nutrients found in raw and healthy foods to perform their best, and the modern grocery store does not typically cater to our bodies’ real needs. They instead focus on their bottom line, on making a profit, and let’s face it–it’s the packaged, pre-made stuff that has the highest mark-up, so that’s what they push. But we are God’s people, and as such we must be wise–and look out for our own bodies’ well-being.
Certain medical conditions impact what we can consume, but for most of us our bodies need a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits, supplemented by milk, butter and cheeses, fish and meat, whole grains, beans and nuts. Organic is far superior to not, and I personally believe non-pasteurized milk and other dairy is best (I urge you to educate yourself on this issue and form your own opinion). Salt should not be processed (pink Himalayan is full of trace elements we need), vinegar should be apple cider, and we should still make homemade soups from bone broths simmered for hours like our grandmothers and great-grandmothers did–and homemade yoghurt and sauerkraut, and whole grain breads.
You don’t have the time for all of this? Maybe, but will you have the time for major illness when your body breaks down? It will require down-time whether you have it or not! You don’t have the money? I am convinced eating properly is actually cheaper, because you typically use less expensive raw foods like dried beans and brown rice, but even if it isn’t, consider whether you will have the money for doctors, hospitals and medicine later on down the road. But it is true that it is almost impossible to eat well if you work outside the home and don’t pack a lunch. So what should you do?
The answer is to always make a bit more when you cook dinner. Leftover salmon, pieces of steak meat, beans, brown rice, and the like make a fabulous take-along lunch. A nice slice of homemade whole grain bread (or health food store sprouted grain bread if you’re desperate) and a chunk of Brie or other cheese is filling and tasty. Supplement with a bag of fresh sugar peas or sliced up washed broccoli, or blueberries or melon pieces, and top off with 86% or 92% dark chocolate–you’ll be great until dinner and beyond!
Think about the simplest and most basic foods you had as a child, if you’re old enough–as an evening treat, for example, a little bit of oatmeal cooked in water with some Himalayan salt and ground up flaxseeds, finished off with some organic whole milk is absolutely scrumptious–and far healthier and cheaper per serving than a bag of Doritos, or chips and dip!
Know that sugar (as well as margarine and most oils) is your enemy–so many people suffer from diabetes, as well as various other ailments because of it–but a little bit of raw honey is nutritious. Fresh cherries or blueberries or watermelon is so much better than a candy bar, and when you feel like chewing, fresh cut up veggies are the best!
It amazes me that God has provided so many healing foods for our bodies, but most of us scorn–or aren’t even aware of–them. Consider garlic–because of the smell it gives our bodies for close to 48 hours, most of us have to think through when we consume it raw, but even someone who works full-time could eat it Friday night and be fine by Sunday morning. And what it does for our bodies is amazing! It has many antimicrobial and other benefits, not the least of which is simply an amazing sense of well-being and good health! Fresh onions, although not as potent, are also good for us.
God is gracious and kind; He gives wisdom to us when we look for it–and nutrition is no exception! “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” (James 1:5 NIV) If we approach the subject with a open mind that is eager to learn, and ask Him, God will help us understand what we can do to eat wholesome foods that will keep us functional for years to come!
So, how healthy are you? “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” (Proverbs 1:7 NIV) Do you want to be healthier? Ask God! And do the research. Don’t be like the fool in this verse who despises wisdom and instruction. There are many online resources that explain what foods are good for us and which are not–make it your business to check them out; then do what they say. Your body will thank you!
Dear Lord God,
Give me wisdom and understand how to properly feed my body; help me then implement this wisdom! Amen.