I have never said, “I don’t want abundant life. I’m fine with plain ol’ life” I never said that, but there have been times when my food choices screamed, “Kill, steal, destroy!!” There was a time when I could walk into my (it felt like mine) neighborhood Baskin Robbins and the clerk would reach for the banana because she knew what I would order. I was Queen of the Banana Split.
Also, (since I am repenting–it is Lent after all) I confess to buying a pint of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream, opening it, and eating it before I got into the house. Okay, those were not moments that make me proud. But, I’m telling you this because our food choices make the difference between living and living abundantly. I had to change what I ate to life better. I exercise by walking which probably kept me from developing Type 2 Diabetes, but I did have more aches than I liked. I knew I could and should do better.
In my 20’s I was trained as a Nutrition Aide by the City of Detroit Department of Public Health. I loved the job because I trained new mothers in how they could eat better and feed their babies the right foods. This began a lifelong interest and investment in eating good food. (Hey, just because we know better does not always mean we will do better—just sayin’—Don’t Judge). Though I may wander off from what I know I should do, my training and delight in delicious food keeps me running back to healthy food.
We are on the Daniel Fast. We know it is not just about food. We know we are on a spiritual journey to listen for God’s voice, to draw closer to God by reading God’s word, and to spend more time in spiritual practices.
But, for the next few days, I am focusing on food. Not to give food priority, but to make it plain that our physical witness is part of our spiritual witness. We can serve abundantly, worship abundantly, have abundant joy when we live abundantly by eating better. Let’s talk about food.
Food As Medicine
Food that is used as medicine is sometimes called nutraceuticals:
“Food, or parts of food, that provide medical or health benefits, including the prevention and treatment of disease.” Dr. Stephen DeFelice, Foundation for Innovation in Medicine
Okay, before you shut down the page let me say what I mean by nutraceuticals. Nutraceuticals are foods I eat that make me feel better: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans. Sound familiar??!! Right, those are most of the foods we eat on the Daniel Diet. Have you noticed a change in how you feel since following the Daniel Fast? Studies show that people who eat more vegetables, fruits, and whole grains have lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and reduced probability of heart disease, diabetes, and strokes. What you are eating matters!!
There’s more. . . Will talk tomorrow about the benefits of specific foods. (Disclaimer: I am not an expert on food or your health. You are. Please consider your own health needs when making food decisions.)
Prayer for Day 15: O God of Abundance and Love, You provide us with healthy food. We offer our healthy bodies, minds, and spirits to you in service.
http://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/activities/healthy-foods-have-hand-quick-easy-meals You can find a list of foods that are inexpensive (most are) and can be used to make a quick meal. Example: whole grains, rice, vinegars, canned seafood, and beans
http://students.brown.edu/Brown_Nutrition/fruit/ “Food as medicine: A Practical Approach to Healthy Eating”