Physically, in terms of our health, we look for shortcuts very often. We go to the doctor, he/she does and exam, gives a diagnosis and then, after that, is very common that the Doc will prescribe us some kind of medication. In some cases, you receive the life sentence that you will have to take these medications until the day you die and, many accept that. However, “…according to leading health organizations, factors underlying most chronic diseases include tobacco use, harmful alcohol use, insufficient physical activity, and poor nutrition.” To these factors you add stress and bad sleep and we are definitely in trouble.
When dealing with resolving the problem of any illness, why not start by addressing these factors? Let’s stop smoking, stop abusing alcohol, let’s get moving and let’s eat better. To these factors we can also add avoiding stress and, get better sleep. Nevertheless, because we want to keep our cigarettes, because we like to abuse alcohol use, because we hate exercise and love our foods, we rather take the pills. It is the shortcut, the easy way out. The question is, is it working? Are we getting any better? Well, NO! About half of Americans are experiencing at least one chronic health condition such as cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity. So how is that shortcut working for us?
Let’s be honest, the god of this world is Satan (2 Corinthians 4:4). When you look deeply at the way the secular world works you can actually see Satan at work. The reality is that there are a group of people making a whole lot of money out of the sickness of other people. Sick people are the reason why others are able to put food on their tables. Sick folks are a very lucrative business! So, is there a good motivation to get people healthy? Nah!!!
I was diagnosed with diabetes three years ago and, immediately, I was placed on meds, but I noticed something that it did not take me a degree in medicine to figured out. I noticed very quickly that during the summers in Alaska my sugar levels were much better, almost normal, compare to the winters. See, the summers in Fairbanks are the best, temperatures around the 70s and plenty of daylight! Is very simple, during the summers I was working around the house, cutting trees, splitting wood, riding my bicycle, walking the golf course, etc. but come the winter, I became sedentary. I could not do much with temperatures below zero and, to be honest with you, I was never excited about going to the gym, I am always excited about outdoors activities!
Last year, around this time, my wife, who is also a medical doctor, told me that we needed to stay away from process food. It is hard to stay away from process food because about everything in the supermarket is processed. However, eating real food is possible and worth it for the sake of our health. A year later I can say that I am about 30 pounds lighter and have gone from size 40 to 36. At one point in my life, not too long ago, I was size 42; that was over 40 pounds ago!
Now in Arizona, the weather is amazing this time a year. I know, it will get very hot during the summer! However, there are still physical activities that can be done early in the morning or late in the afternoon and night. My current sugar levels are normal; why? Well, very simple, 1) I don’t smoke, 2) I don’t drink, 3) I eat better, and 4) I exercise about every day.
Exercise is the foundation for my physical health. That’s why golf has been such a blessing to me. I don’t ride those golf cars; I walk the whole 18 holes; but not only that, I stretch about every morning, I do my sit-ups, I work around the house, I take my dog for long walks, I wash my cars by hand and, I just keep moving! I am also attempting to go to sleep earlier. By the way, I sleep much better because come 10 PM I am tired and ready to actually go to sleep. I absolutely love waking up earlier in the morning ready to go, excited about the day and the tasks at hand. Finally, I avoid unnecessary stress. After all, the Bible does tell us to “be anxious for nothing…” (Philippians 4:6)
I am not taking any shortcuts with my health, I know that as long as I continue with this lifestyle, diabetes is not an issue for me. How I know? Very easy, 1) I check my numbers, and 2) I pay attention to my sex life! Oh yes, Diabetes affects that to. There are millions of men in America with Erectile Dysfunction (ED). I bet I got your attention now!
This may sound strange to you, but I stopped praying for a miracle, I do not pray for God to take away my diabetes anymore. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the power of God and, I definitely believe in miracles, but, what a miracle is going to do if I continue to eat garage, if I embrace alcohol abuse and smoking and, if I go from my job to my couch? How long do you think the effects of that miracle will remain? Again, I am going to reap what I am sowing and, you to.
What I pray for is for God’s grace and to continue to discipline myself to keep this current and healthier lifestyle. Asking for a miracle, without the commitment to change our lifestyles is an ineffective shortcut.
Another important point; sadly, I am surrounded by sedentary and physically lazy people. That’s just the truth, especially folks my age (I am 51 years old). I can’t depend on them when it comes down to my health. My health is my responsibility so, I do not wait on anybody; I will take care of myself regardless of who is around me. If is not an emergency, I will be out there, walking, exercising, playing golf, working around the house, etc. Waiting on other people will take you to the grave early. If they want to be lazy, let them be lazy! You are the expert of your own body and you know how your body responds to certain things; like Nike say, just do it! Do it for your own sake, in obedience to God and for HIS glory.
To be continue…
 ACE (American Council on Exercise) The Professional’s Guide to Health and Wellness Coaching. (2019)