Last May I left my job in the corporate world to head off to school to study hydrotherapy, massage, herbs, and nutrition. I shared with you in my last post how God is providing opportunities for me to learn right here in Maine so I don’t have to leave the state. I will someday go back to school but for right now there is so much to do here and so many people to learn from. One group of people are the doctors and nurses at Parkview Adventist Medical Center in Brunswick, Maine. I spent the first two weeks of October observing their Lifestyle Choices program. This program taught me how to put the 8 natural laws of good health into practice. Each night for 10 days the participants shared an evening meal, learned about cardiovascular and strength training exercise, and walked 1 mile. Then the rest of the evening was spent learning more about how you can protect yourself from and even reverse some diseases with just the choices in what you put in your mouth, how much time you spend outdoors, and how you move your body. Then each went home with breakfast and lunch for the following day. Some nights there were vegan cooking demonstrations and the program ended with a trip to the supermarket to learn how to read food labels. It was a fantastic program and it was so inspiration to see the numbers go down – blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar – of those who stuck with the program.
So what are the 8 natural laws? I’ll briefly describe each below and in subsequent posts I’ll go more into detail on each.
1) Nutrition: whole plant foods are the optimal food source for the human race. Not only does the Bible point to it as the original diet of mankind but doctors and scientist are now coming forward confirming we thrive on plants. I personally don’t need their statistics to know what this way of eating is best, having converted to the veg life myself it has worked wonders for managing my disease. I’m confident it can do the same for you!
2) Exercise: we’ve been told for years that we need to exercise. Good news is that a 30 minute walk 6 days a week and weight training just 3 times a week is adequate for most people. Don’t forget to warm up and stretch before and after your workout!
3) Water: According to the U.S. Geological Survey’s Water Science School “Up to 60% of the human body is water, the brain is composed of 70% water, and the lungs are nearly 90% water. Lean muscle tissue contains about 75% water by weight, as is the brain; body fat contains 10% water and bone has 22% water. About 83% of our blood is water, which helps digest our food, transport waste, and control body temperature.”
We lose water in those waste and temperature control processes and it needs to be replaced. A general rule of thumb is to drink half your body’s weight in ounces. For example someone who’s 150lbs would need to drink 75 ounces of water daily.
4) Sunshine: skin cancer scares has driven us all inside our homes but the truth is we need the sun. Studies have shown that proper exposure decreases your blood pressure, stimulates the thyroid gland and normalizes metabolism, helps relieve stress, helps with insomnia, lessens menopausal symptoms, and the list goes on. Sunlight is only your enemy if you have a diet high in cholesterol and fats, do not exercise, and stay out too long and get a sunburn.
5) Temperance: This is usually the least popular of the 8. We’ve been given a wrong definition of what it means to be temperate. It’s not moderation in all things. It is avoiding all things that are harmful to your health and being moderate in all the good things. I will admit this one has been a struggle for me. My brain says “it’s good for me so I can eat till I can’t eat no more!” But this is soooo wrong, overeating is just as harmful as eating the wrong things.
6) Air: Air is the most essential element needed to sustain life. We can live weeks without food, days without water, but only minutes without oxygen. It is essential to get outdoors in breath in the fresh air. The air quality in our homes is not the same as outdoors. There has been an increased number of people developing Asthma and other respiratory illnesses over the last hundred years. At the same time people are spending more and more time indoors. There seems to be a connection there.
7) Rest: This one is near and dear to me. During the darkest days of my MS symptoms I could find no rest. Our society today doesn’t really value rest – until you can’t get it anymore. Sleep loss compromises all our body’s systems. It weakens the immune system, impairs our ability to think quickly and process complicated subjects and tasks, it slows our reactions and has contributed to a number of car accidents over the years, it affects short-term memory, and I don’t think I have to tell you what it can do to our moods! Our body requires 8 hours of sleep each night and sleep debt is cumulative.
8) Trust: Does the long list of things above sound overwhelming? You may be saying “that’s an awful lot of things to change in myself” but the good news is you don’t have to do this alone. The power to change doesn’t lie in our willpower it lies in His power. How many times have you made a new year’s resolution to lose weight, stop smoking, or control your temper and how many times have you failed? The number one cause of death is people doing the things they know they shouldn’t do. We don’t need more information we need a source of power. With God there is no habit or addiction that is too difficult to overcome. He wants to give us freedom from the habits that bind us. I’ve already shared how He’s done this for me and I know He’s waiting to do the same for you.
So there you have the 8 natural laws. Follow these and you will see dramatic changes in your health. Those following these principles have reversed Diabetes, Heart Disease, and in my case Multiple Sclerosis. This is the foundation of the program we are going to be presenting at the Ark once it’s up and running. Here’s a before shot of the building. Once remodeling is complete I’ll share an after. As for the programming Monday-Thursday there will be different seminars and classes on various topics from Diabetes to Depression Recovery. Also there will be vegan cooking and herbal healing classes. The doctors from Parkview as well as a whole host of experts and layman alike are coming out to help us educate the Lewiston community. There is so much sickness and disease in this town and I cannot wait to share with you the stories of the individuals who, like me, find healing through lifestyle change.
The restaurant will be coming soon and as more of the pieces come together I’ll share more details about that and maybe even a recipe or two! I’d love to hear about anything healthy ministry related happening in your neck of the woods. I’m currently piecing together a newsletter sharing all the things God is doing to heal the people of New England. Even if you’re not in New England please share your story. I can only talk about myself for so long. I’m looking for others to share their story as well! Love you all and wishing you an abundance of blessings for the rest of your week!