Tag Archive | Christian weight loss

Designed to Succeed

God did not design us to fail. But we are human, and we do.

Of course, as a counselor who specializes in nutrition, I’ve probably heard every excuse known to man. And man, do I dislike excuses! Oh, you had to eat that entire 14-inch pizza that Aunt Maude brought over, did you? “Well, I didn’t want to hurt her feelings. After all, she made it just for me,” you said.

I understand. As a people pleaser, you didn’t want to hurt her feelings.

But what if Aunt Maude brought over some cocaine? Would you take it? I would certainly hope not! If you’re a diabetic, that fatty pizza would be just as dangerous to you! My recommendation: Chew a slice slowly, wrap up the rest in small servings and freeze for another time.

If you disobey God’s urging, you own it! It was your choice.  “But I tried to resist.” As that famous philosopher, Yoda replied to Luke Skywalker when he whined, he’d try, acknowledged, “No. Either do or do not. There is no try.” Now drink water, walk five miles, lift weights, play tennis or some other exercise. Do the crime, do the time.

Some of my patients protested, “I feel stupid. I failed.”

As Thomas Edison once declared, “I never fail. I just found 2,000 ways something didn’t work.” Failure makes us better educated. Face it, sometimes experience hurts. So, you were weak – learn from it. As I’ve mentioned before, most patients who came to see me had failed on many diets. Nothing worked – at least for any length of time.

Most believed that if success was to be achieved, there must be a gimmick, or they had to suffer to reach success. This is what I call “the penance principle.” It’s a false way of thinking. God designed us with innate, common sense. Use it. How can a hot dog diet (yes, there is one) be nutritionally sound?

Our loving Father desires to give His children only good gifts. That’s why He provided so many nutritionally dense selections to choose from.

“So if you, despite being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” (Matthew 7:11) 

If God doesn’t provide for our requests, He has a good reason – so figure it out. Despite what some believe, He is not Lucy who takes away Charlie Brown’s football.

Now, what should we ask for when we pray for our daily bread? Should we ask for 3 lbs. of French Fries covered in cheese sauce? Would that be a good gift? No, we’d get sick or it could harm our heart.

If you face a culinary challenge, God has already given you the “tools” to overcome it. A knowledgeable brain, a spirit that knows right from wrong, and legs to walk away from temptation.

“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”   (1 Corinthians 10:13)

It all breaks down to our mental, physiological, and spiritual relationship to food. Which do we love more? Our belly or Christ? A momentary pleasure or knowing that we have resisted temptation? The food itself is not wrong based on Genesis 1:29 and Genesis 9:3. Our reaction to it can be!

Please don’t allow food to become your idol.

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Well “Nuts” To That Myth!

Back when I began my nutritional career, nuts were considered off the menu. “Too much fat!” experts claimed. Of course eggs, potatoes and chocolate were too. These are myths.

thKCICGCJJOnce all calories were considered equal, but actually they aren’t. We inhabit a wonderfully designed machine. Candy and fruit work in different biochemical ways.

Automobiles need oil, gas and regular tune-ups to work properly. Similarly, humans need a variety of nutrients to work efficiently. Clean Nutrients and proper maintenance produce a healthier body.

I love physiology and enjoy explaining why consuming these nutritious foods are beneficial to our well-being.  Just knowing that nuts are great for the skin and are anti-aging are two important points for me! A third is that they are fabulous for extending memory recall. We need those memory cells!

Nuts are packed with protein, enzymes, antioxidants and so many beneficial nutrients, among them many Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin, B12, vitamin E, manganese, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc and essential fatty acids.

Nuts are anti-inflammatory so anyone fighting arthritis, dementia or IBS type challenges would be advised to include them in your daily diet. They also lower blood pressure, heart disease and assist in the prevention of colon and prostate cancer. A little nut butter on an apple, banana or whole wheat toast should fill one up for several hours without cravings.

Nuts are rich in at least four 50-cent omega 3 words such as linoleic Cholesterol and fats clog one’s arteries but walnuts are excellent for brain and heart health. These nutrients enrich our heart and brain pathways preventing strokes, clogged arteries and heart attacks.

When I was a little kid, with so many walnut trees on our farm, my brother and I made a game of smashing all those shells to get the wonderful meat inside. I think we ate them all year round. If stored properly in a freezer or cool dark area, they’ll remain edible for months.

However:

  • In moderation, as in anything else, they’re fine. Brazil nuts however are high in the mineral selenium and can be toxic in large doses. Consume only about 2-3 to avoid overdosing.
  • Avoid the canned nut samplers produced with oils. They can become rancid more quickly.
  • Avoid processed nut butters with trans-fats which can clog arteries.

So why were these considered “bad” foods? Hate to say it but ignorance, bad science and unhealthy diet plans were reasons. Case in point, the Paleo Diet encourages nuts but nixes legumes and beans. Why? Even in moderation? It’s not practical.

Here’s an interesting comparison based on 1 cup of the following:

  • Walnuts = 1464 calories & 15.2 grams of fiber/148 grams fat (4 grams = 1 teaspoon)
  • Pecans = 1544 calories & 21.6 grams of fiber/163 grams fat (plus butter/sugar in pie)

or you could choose nutritious:

  • Split peas = 230 calories & 16 grams of fiber/1 tsp fat. Hearty soup anyone?
  • Black beans = 227 calories & 15 grams of fiber/<1 tsp fat. Great in Chili.
  • Pinto beans = 224 calories & 15.4 grams of fiber/<1 tsp. fat. High protein too.

Why not choose all of the above in moderation? Each of these foods provide excellent nutrition and none are bad for us. Each contain valuable vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, enzymes and phytonutrients to assist in proper functioning.

Once again, Genesis 1:29, God knew it all the time!  As always He expects us to use common sense. Any food can become a trigger to addiction or allergies. If one can’t resist overeating, don’t bring a product into the house. Balance is always essential for  proper health.

“For the LORD gives wisdom; From His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity.” (Proverbs 2: 6,7)

 

 

 

Eating Right Isn’t Complicated

Eating right shouldn’t be that complicated. God advised Adam how to eat in one sentence:

“Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.”  Genesis 1:29.

Simple, concise, easy to understand. Nothing complicated. Only after the Flood (REAL climate change) did God instruct us to eat meat.

Then some fad-diet-gurus came along and really messed with our heads.  “No, don’t eat carbs, they’re bad for you!”  “No legumes!” or other such nonsense. Even Christians fall for these false diet doctrines!  And you know why??  Because some believe if it’s simple – it’s too easy.  Life is complicated so one must suffer in order to achieve ‘perfection’.  Well, who do you believe, God or some guy who wants to make a fast buck at your expense? th7QKR9FEN“As for me and my house . . .  I will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15.    

So How Should We Then Eat Overall?

  • Eat for good quality nutrients.
  • Eat smaller portions, taking calories into consideration.
  • Learn to eat only until you’re satisfied, not till you’re full.
  • Slow down, chew your food, enjoy the pleasure of taste.
  • Moderation is essential. (1 Corinthians 10:23)

Breakfast, the most important meal of the day.

It’s imperative to “break that fast” or your body thinks you’re ill. It’ll slow down your metabolism in order to protect you.

So first, eat breakfast!

Yogurt:

thBZB5RUVIStart with 6-8 oz of a good quality yogurt with no artificial sweeteners: Dannon Natural, Stoney Farms, Mountain High. The good bacteria gets down into your gut and builds up your immune system. Add berries or a banana if you desire.

Next consume a serving (check the label, each is different) of a good high (5+ grams) fiber cereal.  Good quality cereals include Grape nuts, Great Grains, Raisin Bran, Shredded Wheat, any Kashi Go Lean or Fiber One products. High fiber cereals shouldn’t taste like sawdust! Drink water afterwards. The fiber expands, binding with the bad artery clogging LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, removing them from your system.

What about eggs? Choose wisely. A whole grain English muffin with 1 egg, small slice of Canadian bacon/ lean ham (Bacon contains nitrates, preservatives and dyes) with a slice of 1% white American cheese is a great treat.  Limit fried potatoes and overly buttered toast. Use jams or a good quality peanut butter instead. Balance lunch then, with mostly fruits/vegetables, 2 ounces of lean protein.

What about juices?  When consuming juice rather than the fruit, you rarely get fiber. Choose a fresh orange at 60 calories rather than juice at 120 for 6 ounces. Orange juice with pulp is a better choice. Cantaloupes, bananas, berries contain great amounts of potassium, magnesium, beta carotene, lutein and antioxidants for heart and eye health.

In a hurry? A smoothie using a ripe banana, orange juice, yogurt, 1% milk and ice cubes, can be a wonderful potassium-magnesium shake!

Pancakes? Buckwheat rather than white flour pancakes provides better fiber for insulin management. Try fruit toppings rather than syrup.

Coffee?  Two cups usually – more and you lose valuable bone density and nutrients. Green tea, no problem.

Pop-Tarts?

You probably know my answer to this one. One Pop-Tart has approximately 200 calories and few nutrients. Furthermore, in an hour you’ll be hungry because of an insulin/sugar drop. What’s my mantra? Nutrients!  You could consume three oranges for the same calorie count.

Bottom line; eat breakfast to rev up your metabolism each morning. Use common sense and don’t stress out. Ate a fatty breakfast? Consume more vegetables for lunch!  You control your own eating habits. Honor God with that control.

Thank you for the “Sisterhood of the World” Award

How wonderful to discover while on vacation that I’ve been nominated by a lovely new follower, Fashionable Librarian for the Sisterhood of the World Award.  I am honored and thank her so much for thinking of me.  Please check out her fabulous “fashionista” blog at   sisterhood[1] http://conciergelibrarian.com/2015/09/26/sisterhood-of-the-world-bloggers-award/

I find these type of awards a wonderful way to discover more about our blogging friends. Only wish I could nominate many more. Have fun with this one!

Here are the simple rules for participating:

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site.
2. Put the award logo on your blog.
3. Answer the ten questions sent to you.
4. Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer.
5. Nominate ten blogs, notify them.

Questions I had to answer:

What is your ideal vacation spot?  

Where do I start? Possibly the coast of Spain, the Highlands of Scotland? The Rhine River of Germany? No, I think my favorite place is a small area high above Innsbrook, Austria called Pertisau. An absolutely breathtaking, peaceful village surrounded by mountains. My husband and I loved cross-country skiing there. Enjoyed stopping at local eateries for gluwein and brats as we progressed.

Where are you from?

Having lived in 14 States, moved over 20 times in my life as a girl, while in the military, golf and on God’s ministry, I’m from “everywhere.” Educated up north, raised mostly in the south.  Best of both worlds!

What is the national dish of your country?

Probably Bar-B-que, wouldn’t you think, USA?

Dark or milk chocolate?

Definitely dark!!! Nutrients you know.

Coffee or tea?

Always preferred coffee until we moved to Ohio where the winters are freezing and spiced teas warm us up!

Do you have a pet?

Had a skunk, raccoon, calf, cats, duck, (until he went to duckie “heaven” my mom said. Can’t eat duck to this day) Now we own two crazy dogs, a Cocker and Lhasa who frequently get mentioned in this blog.

If so how did you decide on a name?

They fit the names they already had, couldn’t change ’em.  Too stubborn . . .  dogs that is, not us.

Reggae or Hip Hop?

I guess Reggae because of it’s happy Caribbean beat, but love all types of music from Jazz to Country.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?

Mmm, any place near the ocean. Mykonos, Greece sounds good.

Why would you want to live there?

The warmth of the people, the freedom to write.

Here are my questions:

  1. Would you rather win an Oscar, Pulitzer, Nobel or other award? Why?
  2. What would be your dream job?
  3. What characteristics describe your ideal husband?
  4. What’s your favorite place to vacation?
  5. What’s your greatest skill?
  6. What was your first car?
  7. What were you like in high school?
  8. Have you met a celebrity? Who?
  9. Have you been on television?
  10. What historical person would you invite to dinner?

Have fun!  Here are my Nominees:

  1. https://storyland4.wordpress.com
  2. http://dgkayewriter.comhttp://faithpondering.com
  3. https://saminaiqbal27.wordpress.com
  4. http://lorriebowden.com
  5. http://stormiesteele.com
  6. http://fromtrextotigress.com
  7. https://harmonyspearls.wordpress.com
  8. https://mothergrowfitter.wordpress.com
  9. https://courtingmadness.wordpress.com
  10. http://amydavisart.com

“I thank my God always concerning you for the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus,”  (1 Corinthians 1:4)

Giving God Our Best

“Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”  (Proverbs 22:6)

thK7LS2F56The other day I overheard a friend mention that it is so much easier to simply pick something up at a drive thru or supermarket, than to prepare an entire meal from scratch. How true. Although I preach that anything is fine in moderation, (1 Corinthians 10:23) consuming primarily convenience food will ultimately result in an inconvenient, unhealthy lifestyle.

At one time, in a previous church, our assignment was to read through the Bible in a year. Being competitive by nature, I zipped through it (just like a drive-thru) within 9 months. I hardly digested a thing. During the past several months however, during our Wednesday night Bible Study, we have traversed through the smaller books of the Word; Philemon and Jude, verse by verse. Those books finally came alive to me! I savored them!

Savoring our food, similar to enjoying the Bible . . .  restores our heart! Who doesn’t remember the comfort of kitchen memories as our Mom prepared dinner each evening? I realize in this day and age, everyone’s extremely busy. Who has time to cook from scratch anymore?  For the sake of our families however, we must overcome the convenience of picking something up as we race home from work!

Choosing convenience food provides far less healthy nutrients for your family.  Fast food is loaded with fat and fillers and grocery store packaged meals are abundant in chemicals, dyes and preservatives. Nor does it exhibit any discipline either. And temptations abound in the grocery store! It’s so easy to purchase additional items as we select an entrée on our way home from work. “Oh look, apple pies are on sale too!” Bad choices are made when we’re tempted.

Grabbing something from the store demonstrates an apathetic attitude for our children to emulate as they grow. It also instills a reliance on others, which unfortunately demonstrates laziness as well. If our children fail to learn how to cook, they will eventually initiate the same habits we’ve taught them: Why cook when we have drive-thru’s?

If you absolutely hate to cook, start out by instilling the same habits you do to reach any goal: visualize, strategize and ultimately initiate a goal plan.

Begin with small goals: teach your children how to create a nutritious salad, scramble some eggs, bake a sweet potato, pound a chicken into schnitzels or make a healthy pizza. Give them a sense of  pride in what they create.

Some dieters even incorporate convenience foods into a dieting strategy. They rely on a packaged food program to lose weight, that’s all well and good until they reach their goal and go off the diet. Then what have they learned and what do they do? We certainly wouldn’t want to consume only those selected meals for a lifetime, would we? The only good thing about a packaged meal plan is that we learn to visualize portion control. But we certainly don’t learn how to cook healthy meals.  Even prepackaged meals in the grocery store include an enormous amount of sodium and preservatives for shelf life and eating the same meals over and over again makes us stale. That’s not enjoyable.

How similar to savoring and enjoying the Word of God. The Bible is the Sustenance we build on for an Abundant Life. If we only read the same passages over and over again, we’d grow stale and stagnant. By breaking the Word down into smaller chunks we savor it. Savor both your Bible and your life.

“Okay, So What About the Paleo Diet?”

Asked about this diet recently, I have procrastinated answering, for Paleo is controversial.

thCVDZBWXFFrankly, I find the Paleo diet with its many restrictions, confusing. It ranks right up there with the Atkins and Cabbage Soup diet. It’s complicated and I failed to see many scientific facts to back up its claims. My motto has always been eat for nutrients, not calories, not fat grams nor formulaic restrictions. For as God proclaimed:

“I have the right to do anything,” you say–but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”–but not everything is constructive.”  (I Corinthians 10:23)

As for the Paleo Diet, it proclaims, “Thou shalt NOT consume . . . ” these items:

Cereals: Broad stroke of the pen here which needs clarification. There is a big difference between consuming Rice Krispies with no fiber and Grape Nuts with nearly two teaspoons. Fiber is essential for maximum health because it removes dangerous toxins from our digestive system.

Grains: Another fiber. We are to eliminate oatmeal, corn, potatoes, wheat and bread. Confusing. So whole grain fibrous bread is categorized right beside white? (White makes a better eraser than a bread.) Again no scientific evidence to back it up. I, on the other hand, have countless Bible verses conveying how our Lord ate bread.

Legumes:  This includes all types of beans, (navy, black, pinto, kidney, peanuts, etc.) and peas with 7-8 grams of fiber. What vegetable would one substitute for fiber? 28 lbs. of broccoli???

Dairy:  What? Not even high quality yogurt with all its probiotic properties to protect/build the immune system?  If one isn’t consuming 35 grams of fiber on this plan, then how do we combat the gross parasites and bacteria in our system?

Refined sugar:  There are many types of sugar but the brain feeds primarily on glucose. This diet should clarify what it means by refined sugar as opposed to glucose. Cut down and use sensibly. Anything is fine in moderation.

Potatoes?  Seriously? I’ve written about this nutrient-dense whole grain countless times already in my blog. Please use search engine.

Processed foods:  Finally, something I agree with. Processed foods are a ticking time bomb. Why place chemically processed, dyed or artificially flavored foods into your system to fester with other bodily chemicals? Especially if one is not consuming much fiber which moves toxins from your system!

And yet I found under the list of “approved” foods, bacon! Isn’t that hypocritical?! Bacon is one of the most chemically processed foods there is. Don’t tell me I can’t eat black beans but I bacon is great for me.

Overly salty foods: Salt is an acquired taste and it’s found in all foods already. Good advice.

Refined vegetable oils: I agree to a certain extent. Choosing olive, coconut, flaxseed, sesame oils or even real butter over refined oils are healthier. However I’d add canola oil with its essential omega-3 fatty acids, to the list as well as well.

So there you have it. It’s your choice. Are you going to live by strict dietary rules and regulations, as those offered in the days of the Pharisees, or are you living under grace and are free to enjoy anything in moderation?  Oh, and one more thing: you have Free Will to believe anything. I prefer to believe that my ancestors were designed and given a diet by God, not cave men. It’s called Faith.

 

To Veg or Not to Veg . . . That’s an Interesting Question

A Vegetarian Diet is an interesting and sometimes controversial subject. Even though I’m not a vegetarian, by faith I follow God’s laws – so what does He say about it?

vegie diet

God intended man to be vegetarian according to Genesis 1:29 “Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.” So we were designed for it.

Originally the world had a different climate structure. It was only after the Flood that God said, “Everything that lives and moves about will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.” Genesis 9:3. I suspect it was not only due to climate change, but the fact that animals multiply faster than humans and would over-populate the earth and mankind itself.

Vegetarian diets can be plant-based only, or one which allows eggs, cheese and milk products. In this matter, God gives you choice, conscience and the desires of your heart. He only wants you to be self-controlled, healthy and to honor your personal temple. Isn’t it gluttony to devour that advertised 72 oz. rib-eye monstrosity which creates a dangerously acidic pH? Meat’s a side dish.

A vegetarian diet makes sense:

  1. What are the most common diseases today? Heart ailments, kidney disease, cancers, hypertension, high cholesterol. A true Vegetarian has fewer health concerns. Since cholesterol is only found in the liver, many of these diseases could be eliminated or reduced through a vegetarian diet.
  2. When one consumes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, one is ingesting a healthier, higher fiber diet. This naturally lowers the risk of colon cancer as well as the diseases already vegie diet toomentioned. (There is no fiber content in meat no matter how tough it is!) 
  3. A vegetarian diet is extremely colorful, containing more complex carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytochemicals (like lycopene) and flavonoids which boost our protective physiology. 
  4. I grew up on a dairy farm where cows were raised pretty much organically back then. Today however, animals are raised with so many growth hormones, consuming meat products are causing a rise in the puberty rate at a much younger age . . . another health concern.
  5. Beneficial Omega 3’s can be found in nuts, avocados, flaxseed, canola, olive oil and other plants, nuts and seeds.
  6. In the book of Daniel verses 1: 1-21, he not only survived but thrived on a diet of vegetables and water.
  7. A vegetarian diet is a very controlled one which, if practiced correctly, creates a well-disciplined individual.

Cautions:

  • Vitamin B12 access is primarily derived from animals. However I believe that vegetables grown in organic soil (manure based) would hopefully produce enough B12 to sustain a healthy vegetarian diet. Otherwise a supplement is needed.
  • Beware:  A vegetarian diet doesn’t necessarily mean healthy. Saturated fat is found in whole milk and cheese. I’ve counseled several vegetarians who were well over 200 lbs. primarily because they ate mac and cheese, creamy pasta sauces, French fries, butter and trans fat items such as potato chips and cookies.
  • Your balance awareness is essential! Not ingesting macro and micro nutrients could produce depression, hair loss, anemia, lethargy . . . so listen to your body signals.

So then why shouldn’t we all adopt a Vegan lifestyle?

  1. Because God advised us to consume meat after the world-wide Flood. See fourth paragraph. Unless the world’s animal production was drastically curtailed, animals would overrun the earth. Just look at countries where animals are considered sacred and what happened to the environment there. That’s man’s choice.
  2. God told the Israelites to eat lamb, bitter herbs, unleavened bread to remember the Passover. Exodus 12:8-9
  3. God laid out strict dietary laws in Leviticus 11 for health and sanitary reasons.
  4. Jesus offered fish to others and being God, He wouldn’t offer anything that would harm His people.
  5. In order to derive enough B12 in a vegan diet, purchasing organics would be the most beneficial. That usually means additional expenses.
  6. It’s difficult to dine out at restaurants or with friends who aren’t vegans.
  7. It’s challenging to find recipes (seek WordPress food blogs) which adhere to a vegan lifestyle and one must constantly combine (ex: beans and rice) to ingest the proper balance of nutrients.

So What does God Want? . . .  Obedience and Common Sense

  1. He laid out strict laws as to what animals to consume in the Old Testament Deuteronomy 14: 3-20 and the New Testament in Acts 10:10-15.
  2. Jesus ate fish. Luke 24: 41-43
  3. Jesus ate the Passover feast while on earth.  Luke 22: 14-15
  4. In Acts 11:5, Peter was told what he could now eat and it included meat. “”The voice spoke from heaven a second time, ‘Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.’

Should one consider a vegetarian diet? Although I don’t adhere to one, I would highly recommend it!

“For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer” 1 Timothy 4: 4-5

Let the Weight Loss Season Begin! Let’s Start With The Best

th69G80ZE5As promised in my post from December 31st, I am planning a series of “diet” blogs. What works, what doesn’t.  My goal is to encourage those attempting to lose weight, to do so, safely and logically.

There are several controversial diets which will be addressed in this series; but first some practical truths:

 

  1. God’s physiological Truths trump man’s truths every time! God Truths remain constant: He doesn’t make mistakes nor does He change His mind.  Numbers 23:19
  2. There is no such thing as “instant” weight loss. If you believe that, sadly you’ll believe anything. Weight didn’t go on overnight, it’s not going to be lost overnight.
  3. If it sounds too good to be true, it most likely  is! Ask yourself, what’s in it for the one who is creating this diet? Notoriety, fame on Oprah, monetary gain? Would you trust your life to someone who only wants your money?
  4. Strive not to be a sheep who follows blindly down a path to destruction. Don’t be so desperate to lose weight that you’ll follow any diet guru or celebrity. Please don’t jeopardize your health for a passing fad based on no physiological science even if everyone else is doing it.
  5. Any diet will allow you to lose weight but a realistic one is when a person can remain on for life without sacrificing health.

I was going to begin this series with all the crazy diet plans out there to show you that some people will follow any program to lose weight. Then I thought about human nature:  people today want instant gratification and they want it NOW! To delay recommending a good diet plan would delay improved vitality.

So let’s discuss what God wants instead. He wants you safe, happy and healthy: mentally, physically and spiritually. Diets make one grumpy, jittery and under-nourished. Health makes one vibrant and victorious! Therefore, what kind should one begin NOW?

Easy question. Remember what God advised from the beginning:

“God also told them, “Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant that grows throughout the earth, along with every tree that grows seed-bearing fruit. They will produce your food. ”  (Genesis 1:29)

It wasn’t until after the Flood that God urged mankind to consume meat. (Genesis 9: 3)

Which available diet plan stresses consuming  fruits, vegetables, whole grains,  nuts, herbs and seeds?  The Mediterranean Diet! This balanced regiment contains all of that; plus fish, lean meat proteins and essential fatty acids. It is also in agreement with my philosophy that consuming anything is fine in moderation as recommended in 1 Corinthians 10:23 . . . even chocolate and wine.  It also means limiting but not eliminating red meat which provides essential B12.

It also empathizes Fiber! This is imperative for cleansing the digestive tract and allowing nutrients to be maximized.

The Mediterranean Diet is a Grace Plan as well as my personal Garden of Eden Diet. It allows me to choose and even substitute what I enjoy and never endure items I abhor. It’s a grown-up diet plan and it’s beneficial to everyone. You can search online for a copy of this diet plan. Realistically, it is how I eat, consuming 5x’s more fruits, vegetables and whole grains than meat protein. I avoid processed, packaged foods and use good fats sparingly.  By good fats I mean Essential Fatty Acids like olive, canola oil and nuts.

So why isn’t everyone on this plan?  Because some people mistakenly believe that there must be a “secret formula.” Others believe they are not worthy enough and must suffer for health, or for many other subliminal reasons. It’s the reason I enjoy being a nutritional counselor. When patients understand why they self-destruct, they begin to desire genuine health over weight loss. Begin to analyze what motivates and hampers you in any goal.

3500 calories equal a pound, so cut out about 500 calories per day to slowly lose a pound a week and keep it off. Exercise to increase loss. The Mediterranean diet also believes in physical exercise as an essential component to health. All these fundamentals add up as the most sensible for healthy living. And the bonus is that it is relatively inexpensive and easy to follow.

Rather than provide a specific Mediterranean diet plan here, please check out the countless websites that recommend what to eat.

Next Up: “Don’t try this at Home: Those Wild & Crazy Diet Plans.”

Becoming a New Creation

When I’ve been asked why I became a nutritional counselor, the following post is why. It’s the same reason Jesus continued with His Ministry even though He knew others would scoff and follow false gods filled with complicated policies and procedures to be saved instead of Simple Truth. Our Lord went to the cross because He loved us and wanted to give us True Health for Eternity. We should love our Lord more than chocolate or potato chips.

I will continue to pray for my dear friend Storyad and her courage and convictions to follow her commitment to become a New Creation for Christ! It’s a big step to announce it and follow through with the world watching – I know she can do it because she is surrounded by those who will encourage and love her! Especially me!

At The Well

Ellie's book!!! Ellie’s book!!!

Welcome to the start of my new blogging series on adjusting to a healthier lifestyle. In June I embarked on a journey with some fellow bloggers to lose weight and learn about making healthier choices in food and exercise. Since then I have lost 11 pounds and gone from a size eighteen to a fourteen. I hope to continue to gradually lose more weight and learn to take better care of myself and my family. I’ll be using the book “Life’s Too Short to Eat Bad Cheese…Nutritional and Life Lessons God Teaches Us” by Ellie Marrandette. Ellie writes over at New Creation Ministries and I encourage you to click on over and get to know her a little. (She is one of my very favorite bloggers and I am blessed to call her friend.)

At this point in my weight-loss journey I need help keeping focused on my goal. The newness…

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Discovering Arizona Versus Ohio’s Culinary Habits

thH60L760RIt’s SNOWING outside our new home in Ohio!!! My hubby and I haven’t seen snow since 1992. It’s beautiful, even the dogs enjoy frolicking in the stuff. Great, but now that I’ve seen snow in all its glory, spring can’t come soon enough! If we can’t cross-country ski in it, I’ll stay inside. Can’t remember how to drive in it . . . and don’t own snowshoes. I don’t enjoy hibernating but that’s the tendency for many during inclement weather. Stay home and watch movies all day long.

Have you ever noticed how as the temperatures change, so do your food cravings?  In summer of course, we might long for an ice cream sundae, iced tea, cool salads or watermelon and when it’s overcast and snowing, we crave chili, stews, banana bread, hot cocoa or chocolate chip cookies.

I remembering joking about my winter weight versus summer weight but in Arizona I kept a constant weight and daily exercise was so much easier to maintain. But if you long for hot fudge cake and pumpkin bread, remember anything is fine in moderation.

If you are in control of your cravings and your cravings don’t control you, you can make good quality, seasonal selections and still maintain a healthy weight. But if certain foods are a trigger and you go off the deep end and can’t stop eating, stay away from those temptations. Why make food a golden idol of worship?

“Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things.”( Philippians 3:19)

Try these flavorful ways to cook or bake:

  1. Use less sugar and butter in baking. Tastes can be re-trained.  It’s amazing how greasy or sweet foods taste after you return to consuming them. I’ve never, but some have used applesauce or other fruit to retain texture and moisture. I’d like to know if any readers have tried it and how it worked.
  2. Salt is an acquired taste. Usually babies grimace when tasting salt for the first time. Gradually cut down and add more herbs, garlic and even vinegar to bring out flavors.
  3. When you create your beef recipes such as Hungarian goulash, stew or chili recipes, brown your meat and place in a colander and rinse gently with hot water. Then place it back in the crock pot.  It’s herbs, spices and seasonings that make food tasty. Fat only coats the tongue, so the brain craves more of it to satisfy.
  4. The tendency in winter to eat larger portions, so during these months, remember to substitute smaller lunch plates for your dinner portions.
  5. If salads don’t seem to satisfy during these cold winter months, substitute them with cooked apples or other fruit flavored with cinnamon, an insulin stabilizer.
  6. Hot soups make another great salad substitute. Replace heavier cream soups with a combination of light evaporated milk and 1% milk to lower its caloric count.
  7. Light broth soups can be created with lots of great hearty, filling vegetables. Remember potatoes, corn, carrots, turnips, etc. are not fattening and provide wonderful nutrients and fiber.  Fibrous foods expand and keep you fuller longer.
  8. If you over-indulge, forgive yourself and eat less fattening foods during future meals. Remember you’re human and overeating is not an unforgiveable sin. Just remember that you should love the Lord more than food!

“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”  (1 Corinthians 10:31)

Search for ways to create less fattening varieties of foods and if you have a suggestion I’d love to include for others through my comment section.