“A picture is truly worth a thousand words.” Unknown
Eglon was a very fat man. (Judges 3:17b; NLT)
In doing research for a course I’m creating, I discovered some shocking “visuals” showing the obesity epidemic in this country. You’ll want to see this.
It starts out with a map of US in 1985. Most states are colored white, with about a dozen in light blue, and eight states colored in a medium blue.
Fast forward to 1994. We have a totally “blue country.” The majority of the country is now the medium blue color with about 16 states being an even darker blue.
There’s one more map to tell you about. Hopefully by now you’re curious as to what all of this means. It’s not about new political jurisdictions or even party lines. The medium blue color represents the states with 10 to 14% of their population being obese. (Obesity being defined as having a 30% or higher body mass index, [BMI].)
The darker blue color represents those states with 15 to 19% of their populations being categorized as obese. So, in 1994, there were still no states reporting to have over a 20% obese population.
The third map is jaw-dropping! There is now only ONE state in the darker blue. The rest of the country has had an extreme make-over from blue to a pale orange, darker orange, and red! America is FAT! In 24 years, our country has gone from a non-obese nation to one that is alarmingly unhealthy and obese!
About 16 states are now in the 20 to 24% obese category. Nine states are in the dangerous “red” zone with over 30% of their population being obese! The remainder of the states falls in the 25 to 29% range.
Many will pontificate and say that it’s not clear why Americans have become obese. I beg to differ. I believe there is a direct correlation with the amount of obesity in our country and the amount of processed, packaged foods people are consuming on a regular basis. Yes, there were packaged foods in 1994, but not the staggering amount that is loaded on grocery store shelves today…eventually ending up in people’s grocery cars and ultimately on their hips.
The more processed, packaged, boxed foods, and fast foods people consume, the fatter they are. I’ve received “dirty looks” from folks in the grocery store as I gawk at their carts in disbelief. Most contain no real food but are filled to the brim with packaged, processed chemicals in boxes with a token of iceberg lettuce thrown in for good measure.
Yes, we have an obesity “war” on our hands, but one that is easily won by going back to the “roots” of what food really is. Real food doesn’t come in boxes, packages, or plastic containers. Americans are smart people…let’s eat to be thin and get rid of these red states.
Father, thank You that we do have healthy food to choose from and thank You that we don’t have to have an obesity problem. You have given us the answers.
Link of the Day
State-by-State Maps Show Obesity’s Sudden Rise in US
Photo by Svenstorm
“If you were to get all of your vegetables from conventionally farmed sources, this would be better for your health than eating no fresh vegetables at all. However, conventionally farmed vegetables are not your best choice. Organic vegetables are a much better option.” Mercola.com
…so you can distinguish between what is unclean and may not be eaten and what is clean and may be eaten. (Lev. 11:47; NLT)
Recently, I got to do one of my favorite things as a coach. I got to take a client grocery shopping. We met at Trader Joe’s and spent over an hour walking through the store. I was able to instruct and educate on how to read food and ingredient labels, what foods to buy and what foods to avoid. Not everything is healthful at Trader Joe’s or even at Whole Foods. Granted, they are much better than the local supermarket but one still has to be a wise consumer.
When I go grocery shopping with a client, we spend a great deal of time in the produce section. We talk about and identify the various fruits and vegetables and how to prepare them. We look at the difference between organically grown produce and commercially grown produce and how to distinguish between the two.
A recent quote from Dr. Joseph Mercola says, “I simply do not know of any other single nutritional intervention that has a more profound influence on health than eating and/or juicing fresh, organic vegetables.”
Really! Eating organically grown vegetables and juice from those vegetables can have the most profound effect on one’s health. Let that sink in for a moment. Okay, so you want to eat more vegetables and you’d like to even buy more organically grown vegetables. However, you’ll say that your budget doesn’t allow for buying all organically grown produce.
So as my client and I were shopping in the produce section, I was able to share with her what produce I always buy organic and which produce is safe to buy commercially grown.
According to Mercola.com, “The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit organization that advocates for policies that protect global and individual health, produces the Shoppers’ Guide to Pesticides in Produce.” I located the EWG’s Dirty Dozen list of produce with the highest pesticide residues.
The foods found to have the lowest pesticide residues, meaning they would be safer to buy commercially grown were:
So, now armed with information you can make the best produce choices for you and your family.
Father, we are grateful for access to healthy produce. May we never take that privilege for granted and may we each do what we can do to protect that freedom.
Link of the Day
EWG’s Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides
“However, fever is actually a signal that an immune system is working well and in older children who do not appear to be particularly distressed, fever is a positive sign.” Mercola.com
He asked them when the boy had begun to feel better, and they replied, “Yesterday afternoon at one o’clock his fever suddenly disappeared!” (John 4:52; NLT)
What parent hasn’t felt a little panicky when their child develops a fever? It seems we’ve been duped once again by the pharmaceutical companies that we need to do everything possible to bring that fever down.
Actually, in most cases, a simple fever is a sign that the child’s immune system is working at its best. Mercola.com says, “Virtually all animals naturally develop a fever when they’re fighting a bacterial or viral illness, and this response occurs because it improves your body’s ability to get rid of the bug.
“So in many cases, lowering a fever is not only unnecessary, it could actually hamper your child’s recovery process, prolonging the illness rather than resolving it more quickly.
“Remember that a fever is not something to fear. There is good evidence that fever actually serves as a healthy stimulus to develop a strong immune system and typically the higher the fever the better the stimulus. Something like lifting weights in which heavier weights typically produce more muscle growth.”
Dr. Mercola’s article goes on to say that the American Academy of Pediatrics doesn’t recommend fever-reducing drugs, saying that fever is not an illness but a positive sign that the body is fighting infection.
Commonly accepted benefits of fever are:
- Directly kills invading organisms through heat
- Stimulates antibody production more specific to the infection than any antibiotic
- Increases interferon production which blocks the spread of viruses to healthy cells
- Stimulates production of white blood cells which mobilize and attack invaders
So, allowing your child’s fever to run its course is usually the best choice to help them fight off a viral or bacterial infection. However, measures should also be taken to improve their immune system function such as proper nutrition, exercise, supplementation, and adequate sleep and rest.
Father, we are so grateful that we are fearfully and wonderfully made by YOU and that You knew what our bodies needed to fight off infections.
Link of the Day
Don’t fight a fever support it
Photo by The Geary’s
“I don’t know if you can put a dollar value on my health or anybody else’s, for that matter,” said 48-year-old Ann Coffman, who was diagnosed with zinc poisoning and is now stuck in a wheelchair with limited use of her hands and legs. NaturalNews.com
And when your teeth are gone, keep your lips tightly closed when you eat! (Ecc. 12:4a; NLT)
I’m sure that most of our readers have never used or even purchased denture cream. Perhaps going to the dentist today increased my awareness of “teeth”, as my eye caught a headline about Fixodent Denture Cream causing nerve damage! As a nurse, I’ve cleaned lots of dentures and even applied some of that pink cream on someone’s false teeth.
However, a nasty little secret has surfaced about the damage some of these denture “fixative” creams are causing. Excess zinc used in the creams is causing toxicity along with lowering of copper levels in the body. This combination is causing symptoms of neuropathy and nerve damage along with other neurological issues.
Due to some “bad press” last year exposing the dangers of overuse of these creams, GlaxoSmithKline actually removed zinc from Super PolyGrip. However, I just read that Fixodent made by Proctor and Gamble still contains zinc.
Natural News says, “Some Fixodent users allege that regular use of the cream has caused them to develop serious, debilitating nerve damage, which has sparked a class-action lawsuit against Proctor & Gamble (P&G), the maker of Fixodent.
“I started getting tingling in my fingertips,” said Mark Jacoby, a Fixodent victim, to ABC News’ 20/20 anchor Chris Cuomo. “I started getting weaker and, you know, I couldn’t walk right, off balance and I’m at this point now.”
If you have parents or friends who have false teeth and use denture creams, forewarn them to read the label of the cream they use. If it contains zinc, leave it on the shelf. Don’t subject them to another “fatal bite.”
Father, we pray for protection for all of our readers and especially for those wearing dentures.
Link of the Day
Denture Cream Dangers
Photo by DeeJayTee23
“It’s more prevalent than AIDS.” Underourskin.com
Pestilence marches before him; plague follows close behind. (Hab. 3:5; NLT)
I know what it’s like to be misunderstood and for people to think and say that certain illnesses are “all in your head!” Many years ago when my immune system began malfunctioning due to exposure to chemicals, no one really understood what was going on. When things aren’t understood, it’s easy to judge and jump to conclusions. If no concrete medical answer could be determined for the bizarre symptoms my body was exhibiting, the easiest and obvious thing to do was to ascertain that it was all psychological.
Thousands of people nowadays are suffering from yet another misunderstood and nebulous set of symptoms that comes from the bite of a tiny insect called a tick. Lyme disease is now the fastest growing vector disease in the world. (Vectors are vehicles by which infections are transmitted from one host to another.)
According to today’s link at Naturalnews.com, the CDC says that “Lyme disease infects 325,000 new people every year.” Lyme disease is a “complex, systemic inflammatory condition that often leads to chronic fatigue, joint and muscle pain, autoimmune disorders, neurological problems, and even death.”
To say that Lyme disease is highly misunderstood and unrecognized is a major understatement. The more I read and learn about this pervasive killer, the more empathy I feel for the victims that have suffered the “bite.”
I also have a dear friend who has literally had the life nearly snuffed out of her due to this hideous and insidious disease. Even though she never complains and valiantly puts on an amazing front, she is in almost constant pain of some sort and has gone from being an independent young woman to someone who now needs family support for her nearly all of her daily activities.
Take just two minutes out of your day and watch the short video clip that features some of the issues around Lyme disease. This clip is from a newly released documentary that unfolds like a real-life thriller. “Under Our Skin” exposes the hidden epidemic of Lyme disease and reveals how our troubled health care system is failing to address one of the most serious and mysterious illnesses of our time. (The movie can be purchased from http://underourskin.com or watched in its entirety on Amazon’s Video on Demand service.)
Traditional doctors fail to acknowledge that it’s a legitimate disease and have gone so far as to blackball doctors that care enough to treat patients with Lyme. Thankfully there are practitioners who do care and have developed specific, customized protocols for treating the disease. Our link of the day offers further resources.
Father, we speak healing into everyone who battles with this plague from the enemy. We pray for grace and strength for them and their families.
“I feel like we are all currently in an inadvertent giant human guinea pig study right now with cell phone use.” Mike Geary
Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? (1 Cor. 3:16; NIV)
We’ve all heard the warnings, and most have chosen to ignore them. Just as controversial as nutrition, is the back and forth accusations regarding the effects of cell phone use. Just as most of us don’t want to believe the science that says that our health is severely damaged when we eat fast foods, we also don’t want to believe the science that says that our health is in jeopardy when we use cell phones. Indeed, just as our culture has fully embraced fast food, we have also embraced cell phones and are using them more and more as technology makes them more and more capable.
The following is an article by one of our colleagues who approaches the cell phone issue from a very different angle. It’s well worth reading. Long time readers will recognize the name Mike Geary as one of the handful of people that we frequently quote since he is on the same wave length as we are on the topic of nutrition. I’ll keep this DG very short as I want to encourage you to follow today’s Link of the Day and read what Mike has to say.
BTW, where do you carry your cell phone?
Father, we ask You to give us the grace and guidance to make the proper choices regarding our temple.
Photo by halfpast
“Compact fluorescent light bulbs contain mercury. Mercury is a powerful neurotoxin that can cause serious damage to the all the tissues and organs in the body as well as the central nervous system and endocrine system and it disrupts functioning of crucial neurotransmitters in the brain.” Cynthia Perkins, M.Ed.
God set these lights in the heavens to light the earth. (Gen 1:17; NLT)
Most of us take light for granted. We enter a room and unconsciously flip the switch and the room goes from darkness to light. Most of us also have never been concerned with the light bulb that provided that light. However, that fact may change.
Compact fluorescent light bulbs or CFL’s came on the scene a few years ago with the marketing ploy that they reduce energy usage and greenhouse gases. Lots of environmentally conscious folks think they’re doing a great thing by using them.
But as is often the case, there is more to the story. Quoting Phyllis Schlafly from a NaturalNews.com article, she says, “CFLs are so toxic because of the mercury in the glass tubing that the cleanup procedure spelled out by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is downright scary. The EPA warns that if we break a CFL, we must take the pieces to a recycling center and not launder clothing or bedding because mercury fragments in the clothing may contaminate the machine and/or pollute sewage.”
We’re told that since the mercury is contained inside the light bulb, there is no risk. However, if the bulb is dropped and breaks, dangerous mercury vapors are released causing significant and serious side effects. Cynthia Perkins also notes that, “when we toss them in the garbage and they are picked up by the garbage company, they are getting broken all over the city and in the landfills. This means that our air and soil is being contaminated with mercury across our cities.”
Today’s link of the day from HealthFreedoms.org has even further disturbing information on the CFL bulbs. “Over the last few years as CFL’s use has increased so has the number of reports linking them to a variety of physical trauma, such as migraines, dizziness, nausea, confusion, fatigue, skin irritations and eye strain. These physical disruptions are the result of being surrounded by dirty electricity from the radio frequency radiation the bulbs generate. CFL’s put out a wildly fluctuating electricity field that can travel around homes and offices via wiring, “polluting” other electrical signals and fields in place, spreading and accumulating.
“There is another health issue too, the following brings forward research showing exposure to the bulbs when sleeping can diminish a person’s ability to defend against cancer due to the simple difference of the CFL’s bluer light in contrast to the incandescent filament glow which casts a yellower light. Exposure to the bluer light of the CFL’s, which closely mimics daylight, at night causes a disruption in the secretion levels of the hormone melatonin which is thought to protect against breast and prostate cancers.”
I think I’ll stick with my incandescent bulbs for as long as I can.
Father we thank You for Your protection for us and for giving us wisdom on how to care for and provide for ourselves and our families.
Link of the Day
Energy Saving Light Bulbs
Photo by paulswansen