A Pain in the Neck
When I started the Daniel Fast, I knew it would be hard to give up sugar. I love cookies. I can give up chocolate candy, cake, and donuts. But, it was really hard to give up cookies. Oatmeal cookies with walnuts and fresh cranberries. Chocolate chip cookies with walnuts and butterscotch bits. Ginger snaps and cookies shaped like hearts with candy hearts melted on top!! Okay! I not only love to eat cookies I love to bake them.
Well, all that ended when I began my Daniel Fast. Daniel did not eat the King’s rich food. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Daniel+1 So I was not going to eat sweets during the 40 day fast. I actually did well. The first few weeks I thought about cookies all the time. But, I did not eat any. Really good right?? Then I had a meeting about the third week of the Fast. They served a lunch I could not eat and they also had cookies for dessert. Chocolate chip cookies. Just plain, not my favorite; certainly not homemade, but a decent looking cookie. Again, I showed restraint and did not eat the cookie–then. I waited until Sunday when we can break the Fast. Then I ate my cookie. It was okay. It was sweet. It was a cookie. I ate it.
But, about an hour after I ate it, I began experiencing pains in my neck and shoulders. They were familiar pains, but I had not had any pain since I started the Daniel Fast and gave up sweets as well as the other stuff: meats, poultry, fish, dairy (see a more complete list at Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church’s website: http://www.wheeleravebc.org/Daniel-Fast/Daniel-Fast.html . Now suddenly, when I begin eating sweets again, my pain in the neck and shoulders return. I was surprised, not in a good way :-(. How could I ever cook and eat my chocolate chip oatmeal walnut cookies again? I did not know.
I needed to know what it meant that my pain had returned. I accessed my 24 hour physician who always responds: Google! I received too much information when I asked the question, “Why do I have joint pain when I eat sugar?” This response I got is representative of many others:
Fried foods and fast food, prepackaged meals, white flour, processed grains and all forms of sugar, raw or refined, can cause muscle and joint pain. Sugar is stressful, and blood sugar spikes can promote inflammation. Most fats can also contribute to inflammatory pain. These include the partially hydrogenated trans fats in potato chips, processed baked goods and margarine.
I know this means I will have to make some decisions about what I eat after the Fast ends. I had not realized I had been pain free until it started again. It’s funny how quickly pain can become tolerated like an unwelcome dinner guest. I believe I was waiting for the pain to return because I thought it was something I just had to live with. But, I don’t. I can decide to surrender to my pain so I can continue to eat chocolate chip cookies or I can make other choices and have improved range of motion, pain-free.
What would Jesus do??!! Well, I’m going to keep on praying and fasting until I have the answer ;-). Or until I can live with the answer.
Prayer: Merciful God, you have given me wisdom and knowledge. Give me strength to do that which I know honors you and my body. Amen
http://www.womentowomen.com/inflammation/arthritis-and-joint-pain-inflammation-could-be-at-work/ She talks about link between joint pain and diet.
Quoting the author: “As a nutritionist, I see clients’ lives change dramatically when they eliminate processed, high-sugar foods and switch to real foods.”
Posted on April 8, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged 40 days, Daniel 1, Daniel Fast, fasting, health, Holy Week, Lenten Season, spirituality, Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.