It being the New Year, I, like 40-50% of Americans (according to “the internet”), made resolutions. Now, also according to “the internet,” 93-95% of diet plans fail, so I wanted something to help me continue to eat healthy and feel my best without failing miserably the next month. Enter the Word of Wisdom (Doctrine and Covenants 89).
I think one of the first things people notice about members of our church is the fact that we abstain from certain substances, such as coffee and tea (“What, you aren’t partaking in the glorious Dunkin’ Donuts coffee drink?!”). Along with the things we “do not” there are things we should “do.” Things like eating lots of whole grains, getting plenty of fruits and vegetables, eating meat sparingly, getting enough sleep, and others. To me, this sounds like a pretty great diet plan; no smoking or drinking, eat a balanced diet rich in whole grains and produce — done.
But beyond the physical blessings that come from living life this way there are spiritual and emotional blessings that come into my life from following it. And that is how I keep this “diet plan” from failing on me. I won’t let it fail, because this is a commandment from God for me to follow. It is also a promise I make to him and to my husband and family that I will take care of the body I was given. And it has served me well as I follow it. I enjoy health and strength that I know comes from God blessing me (that is not to say people do not get sick and suffer ailments during life. They certainly do, even if they follow this commandment. It is part of God’s plan. But that is another discussion).
I think faith in God’s commandments and the promise to Him to follow the Word of Wisdom are essential because if I just did it because it is “healthy” I would likely stray and become confused as I daily read in health magazines and on the internet that “a glass of red wine a day helps your heart,” or “coffee several times a day helps prevent cancer.” I even read once that a glass of beer a day can be “healthy.” So if I tell people I follow this plan because it is the absolute healthiest way to live, someone might argue me on that position. But the the Word of Wisdom will not fail me as a diet plan because it is much more than a diet plan or a healthy way to live. It is a promise, it is a way of life, it is a commandment. It brings a lot of spiritual strength, along with the physical blessings.
So my simple health goal this New Year is to renew my faith and dedication to following the Word of Wisdom. I think I can be one of those successful 5%, how about you?