This post might be a little difficult for some to read because it’s going to be a little more “in your face”. I think it’s important to make decision on changing our health lifestyle based on real motivations that will last. I believe a motivation is best started with a little fear. We need to have a healthy fear of cancer, heart disease and stroke (Top 3 causes of death in US). We need to be seriously concerned about why so many children and adults in our country are obese. We need to take the facts that are staring us right in the face and face up to them. We need to make these changes because our children and their children are depending on us. It’s time to get our heads out of the sand and really make changes.
There is a decline in the health of our nation, this is no surprise. The surprise came to me when friends of mine where getting sick. Sick with diseases that have in recent years reached more and more of the 35-44 age group. Diseases that used to be high in 65+ ages have become diseases that my generation are dying from! The decline in health is scaling down the age group. Why is this happening?
Could it be pollution? Could it be radiation from cellular devices? Could it be global warming? Could it be lack of nutrients in our farming soil or pesticides in our food? We hear a ton of different reasons why people are getting sick but I think we are always trying to divert attention, whether intentionally or unintentionally, from the issue of changing our eating habits.
We say things like, “I know this is bad for me but… “, or ” I know I should eat better but..” I am as guilty as anyone so I am not pointing the finger. I am just trying to point out the obvious. We are avoiding the issue of taking responsibility for our health by making excuses.
A side note: As a daughter of our Heavenly Father I do realize that He has our days numbered. I understand that even though I take steps toward healthy living our perfect Father could choose to allow disease in my life. It is my responsibility and hopefully my response to accept God’s decision for my life. However, as a believer I have a responsibility to take care of the body he has chosen for me to live in here on earth. I am to love my earthy vessel because God has chosen it for me. As a response to God’s love for me I should also love me by taking care of my body. The other point I want to touch on is this. Though our days are numbered, how we spend those days are in large part up to us. We can choose to live a life that less productive because of lack of energy and overall health or we can choose to be vibrant healthy believers out to assist the Holy Spirit in changing lives and saving souls. This is not to say that someone who has a health condition cannot change lives. Many times it is those who are suffering that are the most effective. We must however choose to eat the foods that sustain life so that we can be nourished.
The following statistics might scare you and that’s the whole point. A little fear is good if positive results come from it so choose to make changes not to hide away in fear.
Here is a list of the top 4 causes of death in the United States. The most recent statistic report I could find was in 2007 taken from the National Vital Statistics Report.
There were total of 2,423,712 reported deaths in the Untied States in 2007.
- Diseases of heart (heart disease)- 616,067 – 25.4 % of total deaths in 2007
- Malignant neoplasms (cancer) – 562,875 – 23.2 % of total deaths in 2007
- Cerebrovascular diseases (stroke) – 135,952
- Chronic lower respiratory diseases – 127,924
Now, when you think about the fact that there are over 300 million people in the United States perhaps 616, 067 might not seem like a large number to you. Instead think of your aunt, brother, friend or neighbor that died because of heart disease or cancer. Then maybe it will seem more real to you. In your circle of influence, how many people do you know or have known that have either a heart related illness or cancer? I can count ten! Ten people in my life are struggling with or have died from heart disease or cancer. That is an outrageous number to me. The worst part is, I think many of us have decided it is inevitable that our lives end up the same way. It’s as if we have given up and given in because it’s too hard, too complicated or just doesn’t taste good to eat healthy. Is that “in your face” enough?
My hope and prayer is that what I say is not discouraging but encouraging. God has designed our bodies with the ability to heal themselves. How can our bodies function the way they were intended if we we refuse to nourish ourselves? It’s time to change. Start by changing the way you think about yourself, the way you think about what God desires in your life and live healthy.
The next posts in the healthy living journey will be about what healthy living really looks, products to eliminate from your diet ASAP and how to get started on your journey.
Please note: I am not a health professional or nutritionist. I am a women, wife, mother, sister, friend and Christ follower that is concerned about the health state of America. I am trying to do my part to help my family, friends and blog readers take steps toward a healthier lifestyle.