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8 Biblical Weight Loss Encouragements From Scripture

sandwich-eat-fitness

​​8 Biblical Weight Loss Encouragements
From Scripture

Weight Loss Encouragements

​People ask me repeatedly, “What is the first step to getting healthy and losing weight?”

Answer – a simple three letter word that used to press on our nerves when asked repeatedly by our three-year-old children – “Why?”

Without understanding our why – the because has no merit.

​Why do you want to lose weight or get healthy?

​Is it a temporary why – graduations, weddings, class reunions?

Or is it a more personal reason – my health demands it; the doctor said I should or my spouse would like me to.

Even these reasons are not sustainable for long term health. In fact the short term gain or loss of weight can be more detrimental than a long term weight loss that stays off.

How do we search deep within our soul that no fudge brownie can deter us from our why?

As I review my years of struggle and as I consult with others trying to be set free of weight problems it all comes down to this – a deep, personal, gratifying, glorifying why.

​8 Weight Loss Encouragement Steps From Scripture

​A why that responds with answers such as these:

Because He has loved us with an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3)

Because we are made in His image. (Genesis 1:27)

Because He is the Almighty Rapha Healer. (Exodus 15:26)

Because He has called us to walk (eat and care for our body) in a worthy manner. (Ephesians 4:1)

Because we have been given grace. (Ephesians 4:7)

Because we have been bought with a price to glorify God with our bodies. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)

Because we have the truth in how to live our lives. (Ephesians 4:15-16)

Because we are no longer under a law (food rules set by man) but under grace. (Romans 6:14)

There are hundreds of more verses that share how much God loves us and why we should honor God with our body.

When this ‘because’ sinks deep in our soul our why will be strong and food addictions, overeating, eating wrong foods will make us cringe when they take away the blessing of why.

​So what is the first step for a Christian to Lose Weight?

​So what is the first step for a Christian to Lose Weight?

​It is knowing why life matters to the Lord and eating (living) accordingly.

When it is meal time – let’s ask ourselves “What would satisfy us nutritionally and how much does my body require to be kept sustained till the next meal time?”

Including good quality protein like tuna, eggs, organic cheese or other solid proteins will bring satisfaction for hours. Add to this a high-quality oil such as avocados, nuts, and seeds, then top it off with some cellular celebrations of cruciferous vegetables.

The Treasures of Healthy Living Bible Study is another great study to marinate in all of God’s Word to understand how God’s design brings satisfaction.

The stronger the why the better the success and the more our bodies will glorify Him.

This is the WHY DIET and it will set you free for life!

 “For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace” (Romans 8:6).

Hormone Balance and More – 7 Surprising Apple Health Benefits

Hormone Balance and More - 7 Surprising Apple Health Benefits

apple health benefits

Did you know apples had these health benefits and fun statistics?

Grown in almost every state of the US with Washington being the most famous
Was given as pay to teachers
Americans eat 120 per year
Reduces heavy metals in the body
Has an aroma that can lower blood pressure – just by smelling it

Apples taste amazing and have so many benefits for you! With over 7000 varieties of apples this ancient fruit has been shared around the globe as a gift of honor to royalty and a prescription of medicine to the poor.

Remember when…

I remember traveling with our friends and relatives to the apple orchards in the coolness of an autumn day anxious and ready for fun. As soon as we found the perfect place in the orchard everyone was busy seeing who could fill their bags with apples first. While all this activity was going on I would find the best place to do what I do best – test the crop. Well someone had to make sure these were truly good. Sure enough when my family found me my face and arms were covered with sticky sweet juice. “The testing is done - these are truly ready for picking.”

Value beyond compare…

We have all been tempted by this sticky sweet fruit but did you also know they are very nutrient dense? Apples have 3 forms of fiber in them; insoluble, soluble and pectin that are higher than almost every other food – especially fruits. This fiber can manage blood sugar, promote fat loss, improve digestion, remove toxins such as heavy metals and mercury and cleanse the liver.

A huge benefit, for those wanting to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, is that apples are highly satisfying to the appetite which allows people to eat less. Research has shown that pectin, which is in high concentration in apples, slows digestion keeping food in the stomach longer.

The study showed that those who ate fruit with the pectin in it reported having little sense of hunger for 4 hours, while those who drank juice without the fiber and pectin were hungry much sooner. So, whether you grab an apple as a snack or serve it as a delicious dessert, you’ll be cleansing your body and trimming your waistline at the same time.

Varieties bring goodness…

In my younger years I rarely reached beyond our 4 main apples: Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Fuji or Granny Smith. But in the last 10 years my reach now goes to the Gala, Jonagold, Braeburn, Winesap and Ginger Gold. My top two favorites are the Fuji and the Braeburn. I love firm crisp and sweet apples. Create a sumptuous flavor by combining two or more apples in pies and sauce. After this foodie experiment you will probably agree – store bought sauce and pies don’t add up to the delicious flavor you created.

Savor the flavor…

While apples are in their prime season in the fall with proper planning and cooking techniques we can enjoy the harvest all year long. Keep apples in a cool place away from moisture, heat and light. You may remember older relatives keeping apples in the cellar to last all year. Since cellars are a rarity today here are other options.

Make your own sauce – so simple – a must try. See Healthy Treasures for delicious apple recipes.
Dehydrate the slices – perfect for lunches, hiking, snacks and can be rehydrated to make pies and other recipes. Dried (dehydrated) apples keep for years if kept in a dry container. See Dehydrators here.
Prepare pies now and freeze. I usually make at least 2 pies per year by slicing the apples, adding in the dry ingredients: flour, cinnamon, sugar (sucanat) and placing all this in a freezer zip lock bag. Then when I want a pie I just thaw the bag and put directly into a pie shell and bake!

Slimming recipe....

When looking for a healthy alternative to a sweet treat– try slicing an apple and putting it into a bag with freshly ground flaxseed and cinnamon. Toss and enjoy. Now your hormones will join in and bring satisfaction, happiness and a slimmer waistline.

Apples are a God-given gift of satisfaction and delight wrapped in its red, red-orange, yellow, golden or green package. Enjoy and give thanks.

STRESS – It can eat you ALIVE!

STRESS - It can eat you ALIVE

Stress

Stress for me looked like:

  • a car accident waiting to happen - wait - it did happen.
  • a divorce about to take place - no it didn't happen but we were sooooo close.
  • an enraged bull dog face
  • an empty box of Ho - Hos (if you remember what they were)
  • a husband afraid to come home
  • my kids hiding in their rooms not sure what mood Mom is in

I read in Scripture that I should be able to soar like an eagle - no stress at all. But if I was an eagle I would be tangled in the high wires with feathers going every direction.

But that is not how Scripture describes it or God designed it.

Eagles are mentioned throughout Scripture and each time they are viewed as a magnificent bird with great power, strength, speed and awesome wonder. Their wings spread out over 90 inches - that is almost 8 FEET!

No wonder they can soar above the storms, at speeds of 30 MPH or even up to 100 mph when they are diving for prey.

STRESS is all around us. It can be caused by our environment, diet, exercise (or lack of) and attitude.

Read the symptoms of stress in the Treasures of Health Nutrition Manual.

With God's guidance we are able to control these areas even if it seems impossible. God takes our STRESS and gives us GRACE.

The Cycle of STRESS

Stress is a cycle that if never tackled it will be with you forever!

When you notice stress - immediately say 'STOP'.

Changing the diet can stop stress. No, not eating chocolate even if stressed spelled backwards is desserts! But eating foods high in B complex, fiber and vegetables.

Stress depletes the stores of B Complex and vitamin C. Now there is no defense for stress and your immune system is in terror fully exposed.

Next - sweet cravings come in like a tsnumami - without B and C vitamins your body will go into a wild craving mode for chips or sweets. This is evidence of no vitamin stores in your body.

Eating those chips or sweets - create a short term hiatus with a long-term depression.

Eat more chips or sweets - short time of bliss - then more stress!

More stress - more immune system dysfunction. more cravings, more stress, more immune system dysfunction. more stress - you get the picture.

The only way to stop the cycle of stress is to decide where to get off.  

Here are 3 options of getting off the stress cycle:

Change your attitude and altitude. No one can make you stressed - it is a choice. If surroundings cannot be changed then change the altitude - let God change your attitude.

Take a high quality B Complex - make sure it is designed as suggested in theTreasures of Health Nutrition Manual. This delivers to your cells what they are clamoring for - HELP! (you can read more about Vitamin B Complex in the Nutrition Manual and in our Library)

Change the diet - include high fiber (beans, whole grains, legumes, whole - raw fruits and veggies), B vitamin rich foods (whole grains), lots of raw foods, and NO processed foods.

Consider herbs for stress. Ashwaganda and beta-sitosterol. These are my favorite go to when I have too many 'must-dos' on my list for the day. They work quickly with no side effects - except better ability to cope!

Remember God designed us to recognize stress and then respond accordingly.

When we ignore it - we pay the price down the road with death and disease.

When we respond and correct it - we come back into balance and life is manageable. 'Restore to me the joy of my salvation.'

Isaiah 40:31 But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.

The only way to stop the cycle of stress is to decide where to get off.  

Top 10 Tips for Healthy Eating Out

10 tips for eating out healthy

Top 10 Tips for Healthy Eating Out

10 tips for eating out healthy

10 tips for eating out healthy

Questions from class participants

Q. Do you eat out at restaurants, if so how do you eat healthy when eating out?

A. Good question. Yes we do eat out - more so when we travel than when we are home. Here are my top 10 tips for eating out healthy:

Know the Plan -

Know where you are going ahead of time - planning prevents problems

Be a Detective

Call ahead or search on line to view the menu for options, calories, and where they source their food. Is it local and fresh? Although I don’t choose foods by calories, a high calorie count means there may be hidden ingredients or sugars that I don’t want to fill my meal.

Bypass the Bread

I know it comes to the table smelling oh, so good but the white starch will send your blood sugar swinging and fill up the space meant for high quality protein.

Appetizers are Appealing

Often there are healthy vegetable appetizers that will make a full meal.

Sides take the Prize

Just as appetizers can make the meal so can sides. Often I will order 3 of the vegetable sides to make my complete meal.

Share Desserts with 2-3 people 

Typically desserts are 1000 calories which means sharing saves you unnecessary exercise later to help get rid of the unnecessary calories. My husband thinks this idea is absurd he doesn't believe in sharing a really good dessert, except for one bite!

Share Your Secrets

Most restaurants teach their staff to please the customer. Discreetly share with the waitress/waiter your desire to follow a specific meal plan such as meals under 500 calories, no farmed meat (especially important when eating fish), no or low carbohydrates, etc. As you share this without causing too much attention I have found almost every time they will help me make very wise choices which leads to a larger tip!

Avoid the Known GMO's

This means as much as you can tell from the menu or asking the waitress/waiter avoid food with soy and corn. Doing this will save you a lifetime of problems.

Take Pleasure in the Fellowship

Remember this is one of the main reasons to gather with friends - fellowship! So let the conversations and fun be the entertainment - it is what will be remembered longer than the food.

Diminish the Hunger

If necessary eat a large apple or protein snack before eating out to avoid ravenous hunger that causes large orders or eating all the chips at the Mexican restaurant.

The True Meaning Behind Jehovah Jireh

silhouette-girl-praying

The True Meaning Behind Jehovah Jireh

silhouette-girl-praying

Thanksgiving, a time to focus our praise on the Lord and His provisions, as well us to understand the true meaning of “Jehovah Jireh”, the Lord provides. These past months God has reminded me to wait for His provisions.

Wait for circumstances to be right, wait for the finances, wait for people to be ready, wait for responses from Him, WAIT.

So, I waited…

And beautiful things appeared in my life.

What “The Lord Provides” Really Means

Look at the word provision with me.  Vision means to see - my vision is good I can see this keyboard, these words and the pictures of my family around my computer in my office. My spiritual vision is not always as good. I see what God is doing right now but I don't always see how he works in the future. Vision is what I can see right now.

Pro - means before, in front of, and on behalf of.   We do not see what is going to happen although we can anticipate.  God is the ONLY ONE who can see before or on behalf of us. God can see before it happens.  God plans our future - works for our good becausehe is the BEFORE and the AFTER.God's provisions - His ability to see what we need and to orchestrate it before we need it is His gift to us.  All He asks, "Do you trust Me?"

If He can see before it happens then why should we fret?Instead we can bask in all He has done and rest assured there is nothing that will happen He is not already aware and has made the plans for His will to work.

Teaching Our Children and Grandchildren about The Lord’s Provisions

When I studied this I was reminded of Abraham and Issac.

When Issac was traveling with his father to Mount Moriah and asked about the sacrifice  - Abraham said "the Lord will Provide" - which means Jehovah Jireh. Because Issac was already taught about God's provisions he obediently complied.Are we teaching our kids about God's provisions?

The more we trust in His provisions and teach it to our kids the easier it will be for them to trust Him as well.

Let’s remember these important concepts:

Jehovah Jireh - The Lord will ProvideProvide - means to make arrangements for. God is making arrangements for you each day. Trust and Be Thankful with what the Lord continues to give you. And always remember, the Lord provides.

Christmas Lessons From Israel – Lambs Without Blemish

joyful-family-christmas-dinner

Christmas Lessons From Israel - 

Lambs Without Blemish

joyful-family-christmas-dinner

“But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though be little among the thousands of Judah, [yet] out of thee shall he come forth unto me [that is] to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth [have been] from of old, from everlasting.”
- Micah 5:2

Here's an idea to help you engage in table talk with your family about a deeper Christmas meaning.

Let's talk about Christmas in Bethlehem tonight.

Are you ready?

Let’s begin…

Christmas in Bethlehem - A Little Story to Start

With commercialism in today’s world, it’s easy to lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas.

But hopefully, this table talk for Christmas that I would like to share with you steer you closer to the truest meaning of this season.

Ask your family to bring their Bibles to the table and open to John. Yes, I know that is not our usual book for a Christmas story - but yet it is!

John 5:1-3: “After this, a Jewish festival took place, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. By the Sheep Gate in Jerusalem there is a pool, called Bethesda in Aramaic, which has five colonnades. Within these lay a large number of the disabled—blind, lame, and paralyzed.”

Jesus didn’t spend loads of time in Jerusalem. Rather, like any good Jew, He came into the city from the surrounding towns when it was festival season.

And since festival season was here, He traveled to Jerusalem for this scene at the Pool of Bethesda.

When you travel to Jerusalem in Israel, most tours will take you to the site of the Pool of Bethesda. Believed to be the authentic site because of the 5 porticos showing. From this location you can see the Sheep Gate.

The reading through that passage in John may seem somewhat insignificant, but the Sheep Gate is important. It was the way sacrifices and offerings were brought into the temple. And it was helpful this pool was close by.

The sheep brought in for sacrifices weren’t raised in Jerusalem. They came from the small towns and villages surrounding the city.

​How the Unblemished Sacrifice Were Prepared for the First Christmas

Ruins-of-pools-of-Bethesda-in-Jerusalem

​​Before the animals were sacrificed, one had to be sure they were without blemish. The pool, then, became a handy way to clean the animals after the journey to be sure they were acceptable for sacrificing.

So the Pool of Bethesda was associated not only with healing powers but also with sheep and sacrifices.

Of all the small towns that raised sheep for sacrifice the closest town to Jerusalem that did this, was Bethlehem.

It was the most popular place because it was the closest to Jerusalem. It didn’t take long for the sheep to get to the city, and because of the shorter journey, the sheep were less likely to have blemishes from the walk.

Table Talk and Christmas Blessings

​​“Bethlehem ~ there would be no other place the sheep would come from.”

It was no wonder that Jesus, the perfect spotless lamb, was born in a manger in Bethlehem—a manger made for animals. There would be no other place that Jesus would come from.

As you stand at the Pool of Bethesda near the Sheep Gate - there in Israel - it is quite possibly where the sacrificial Lamb of God who brought healing through His sacrifice demonstrated His power over brokenness and His love for the broken.

For years people read about the pool and they read about the town of Bethlehem as Jesus birthplace - now you can see the true beauty of Scripture as it is intricately knitted together.

Blessings to you and your family this Christmas Season - May the God of Glory fill your home!

Table Talk - meals with fellowship, Biblical learning and of course- satisfying nutrition.  Families that eat together, pray together and learn Biblical Truths together - stay together.

​Healthy Motivation is One Choice Away ​- Here’s How to Win​

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​Healthy Motivation is One Choice Away
​- Tips to Succeed in Life

​​Did you know that healthy motivation is one choice away?

What’s your greatest motivation? Are you a natural-born competitor? Are you striving to keep up with your children or grandchildren?

Are you working to fit into that special spring outfit this year? Are you hoping to outrun your DNA?

Or are you simply trying to live a more healthy life all the way around?

What I’m really asking all of us is this: When you want to quit, what makes you keep going?

Motivation Means The Choice to Make Better Decisions

I have a competitive streak that’s pretty wide.

Part of my motivation originates in the challenge of being a little bit better (healthier, smarter, kinder) than I was yesterday. For this miraculous growth to occur, I must choose to make one good decision at a time.

All of us are one decision away from moving in a positive direction or a negative one.

I apply this principle to my physical lifestyle as well as my spiritual life, and I’d like you to consider doing the same.

Find Healthy Motivation in the Changes in Season

I’m grateful that spring has sprung in the area of the world where I live.

The days are a bit longer and a bit warmer, so I’m trading in my long-sleeve hoodie for the cooler, cuter spring top.

This motivates me to step up my arm workout.

Shallow, I know, but motivation nonetheless.

Also as spring arrives, I’m reminded of the outdoor activities I love: mountain biking and hiking.

So I’d better continue my lower body workouts too.

You see, besides being competitive, I’m activity-motivated. There are many active hobbies that I love, and in order to continue with these, my body needs to be healthy and well.

In my pursuit of wellness, I have good days and not-so-good days. The good days, where I make wise choices, help me push through the not-so-good days, where I lack the motivation to make wise choices.

Surround Yourself with Highly-Motivated, Like-Minded People

Sometimes, to be honest, though, I just can’t motivate myself on my own.

This is when I realize how grateful I am for group fitness classes, and for Body & Soul classes, in particular.

If I were working out at home, I might stop after a certain number of reps, or I might be tempted to put off my workout for another day.

But with a class, I have to show up at the appointed time and work for an hour straight, whether I feel like it or not. This is especially true for me, since I am the instructor in most classes I attend, but even if I were not, I would want to be there.

Working out with a group of women who are pushing themselves to be stronger and fitter is terrifically motivating. We’re in it together.

And then, if that weren’t enough, there’s the spiritual component of class. The prayer at the outset and the music throughout the workout reminds us all that there’s a bigger “end goal” in mind: that of glorifying God in our bodies.

Healthy Motivation Starts In You

​​So, what’s your motivation just now?

Are you training for an event? Are you hoping to pick up a new, active hobby?

Are you fighting a condition that threatens your wellness?

What helps keep you going? Whatever your motivation, keep it in your sights. Do not get distracted by the not-so-good days. Don’t’ get derailed.

We are all on a journey toward wellness and striving to make one positive decision at a time. What will your choice be today?

Build a Manger? This DIY Manger Kit is Fun and Supports Ministry

Jesus-in-the-manger

​Build a Manger?
​This DIY Manger Kit is Fun and
Supports Ministry

When you think of the baby Jesus in the manger, I urge you to consider the incredible example of manhood in Jesus Christ.

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:5-9

By leaving God’s side to take on human flesh, Jesus was demonstrating humility, service and selfless sacrifice. Simply put, There’s Manhood in the Manger! ®

The Manger Build from Noble Warriors

That’s why Noble Warriors (a ministry that serves churches; helping them equip men to walk with Christ and lead well) has developed two resources to help men step up and lead this Christmas.

The Manger Build® is a resource for churches. Using the information provided, a team of men from the local church prays, plans and prepares to host The Manger Build®. A time when men come out to build life-sized managers with their children or someone else’s. Pre-cut wood and instructions make the activity fun and simple but the daily devotions help dads lead their families to keep Christ in front of Christmas. These managers are really big enough to hold a baby! Learn more at www.themangerbuild.org

DIY Manger Kit

The Dad’s Tools for Spiritual Leadership®: Let’s Build a Manger!TM  kit is a smaller version intended for individual use. Families are encouraged to purchase this kit which includes wood, nails and instructions to build a small manger. Six interactive, fun and practical activities are included in the kit to help dad (or granddad, or an uncle, or a big brother, or….) step up to lead the family. You can purchase a kit for your family or share it as a gift with someone else at www.dadstools.org. Use the promo code FLAVOR for free shipping!

The big idea behind each of these resources is to equip and encourage men to step up and lead their families because…. There’s Manhood in the Manger! ®

​​Serving Adventurously,

Mike Young

How to Stick to a Diet: 3 Christian Diet Shifts from the Bible that Work

mother-and-daughter-in-the-kitchen

How to Stick ​to a Diet
3 Simple Christian Dieting Shifts
from
the Bible

How-to-Stick-​to-a-Diet

Do you want to live a healthier, happier life so you can be the person God made you to be?

Wondering how to stick to a diet and lose the weight for good?

Maybe you want more energy for your spouse, you kids or your community. Maybe you’re just looking to feel better and you’re tired of feeling tired and worn down. Those are great reasons and it’s great that you want to start!

However, sometimes even when you want to make changes with your eating habits, you find yourself facing temptation or find you are not fully prepared to succeed.

Whether this is your first or 10th attempt to stick to a diet, there are Biblical fundamentals to committing to your diet and losing the weight.  

This article is going to teach you the number one thing that holds people back from weight loss success and how to overcome it, what God wants for your health and how to uncover your reasons for striving for a healthier body.

There will also be a FREE tool to help you stay on track towards the end, so let’s get started!

Sticking to a Diet Starts With Truth

If you want to lose weight and stick to a diet you have to start from a humble place of honesty.  

There are some foundational questions you have to ask yourself and most importantly, you have to be completely truthful.

When it comes to your diet, no one really knows all of the choices you make, that is ultimately between you and the Lord and anyone else you would like to share it with.

In order for you to succeed, you have to be honest throughout the entire journey, and if you aren’t sure if there’s something you’re unaware of that’s holding you back I encourage you to pray about it, because truth is the start of a diet you will stick to.

You will have the opportunity to ask and answer these key questions in just a bit, but before we jump into that let’s talk about the number one reason people give up on their
weight loss goals and things you can do to avoid this.

happy-family-enjoying

​Progress You May Be OverLooking and How to Stay Motivated      

It is so easy to say, oh, I have dieted so many times before and struggled to lose weight and keep the weight off.

Or, I was successful for a while and then got back into bad eating habits and doubt your future attempts.

There are many other pitfalls I see my clients face that can really hurt their success.  

The number one reason I get from clients for quitting is they are not giving themselves credit for their success.

You have to be mindful of this trap. Any positive change you make is a victory!

Even if you
haven’t lost any weight so far or you think you haven’t made enough progress here are some things to look for and feel good about along the journey.

Your Eating Habits Have Changed

If you compare how your way of eating was a few weeks ago, a few months ago or within the last year you will probably discover, it’s changed and for the better.

Maybe you won’t hit every single food goal you have every single day. There’s holidays, celebrations, birthdays and just, well, life. However to be in a place where you can say that you eat differently now than you used to is a big deal!

Don’t forget that if you’ve made changes that is a victory towards your goals!

It’s important to have
reasonable weight loss goals, each milestone takes time to reach but forward motion is a victory!

What Can You Do?

  • Keep track of what and how you eat.
  • Take time to reflect and review your food diary at the end of the week and you will definitely start to notice some big changes.
  • Give yourself a pat on the back for adjustments you’ve made both big and small to eat the way God intended for you.

Your Blood Pressure is Lower and You Feel Calmer

When we overload our bodies with processed foods and foods high in salt and sugar our internal systems suffer.

If you’re making positive changes in your diet habits you can reverse weight related symptoms that were a big problem before.

You won’t only be able to see the numbers lower, but you’ll feel calmer too.

Tight blood vessels make it more difficult for the body to transfer oxygen and nutrients to the cells with causes the body to become physically stressed, and you feel it!

Notice how much better your body feels when you eat a healthy diet.

Just as good if not better than the scale moving is for your body inside and out to
be healthier!

What Can You Do?

  • Whenever you visit your doctor take note of the things that are improving for your physical health.
  • Keep this information written down and put it with your diet goals. Being able to see where you were and the direction you are going is a great reminder to your success. 

Your Clothes Fit More Comfortably

A lot of people get discouraged when the scale doesn’t budge.

There are reasons why the scale is not budging however it doesn’t mean you aren’t moving towards your goals.

Hormones, exercise and water weight are all factors.

There are times when our
bodies retain more water, and muscle weighs more than fat.

If you’re clothes are fitting better, then you are definitely making progress.

Don’t only measure your success with the scale, it’s not always as reliable as you would like it to be.

What Can You Do?

  • Only weigh yourself in the morning and don’t weigh yourself more than a couple times a month.
  • Keep track of your food intake so you can go back and look to see if there are any patterns for when you are experiencing water retention.  

You Notice a Difference in Your Skin

When we do not consume enough wholesome, nutritious foods it can be reflected on the outside, and not just around our waistlines!

Our skin is affected too.

By consuming more
vitamins and minerals along with healthy fats, your skin will begin to reflect this change!

What Can You Do?

  • ​First, remember that it does take time for all of your skin cells to be replaced. The outer layer or, epidermis takes about 2-3 weeks to regenerate. With that in mind notice when your skin looks healthier, brighter and more lively. This is such a victory and wonderful sign that you are feeding your cells what they need.

You Have More Energy

This one is one that everyone can appreciate.

Extra pounds are a strain on your body. It puts unwanted stress on your bones, your joints and everything else seems to always be working over time.

Every single pound taken off is a relief to your body too!

Slowly, over time you will start to notice a change in your energy levels.

If you already are, that is fantastic!

Being able to improve your health and have more energy is truly a blessing and is a great sign of progress.

What Can You Do?

  • Make sure you are getting enough sleep and reducing the amount of caffeine you have (if any at all). Drink lots of water too!
  • Use that energy for something good. Be of service to someone or fit in an activity that you enjoy doing or add one more lap to your walk. 

Remember to celebrate the small stuff and recognize where you are hitting goals and give yourself credit. Remind yourself you are doing well and if you fall off your plan, get back up and keep going.

To do this and to really
stick to your goals I have found that it is very important to be in the right frame of mind.

So I am going to ask you some questions about your goals that I want you to answer truthfully.

Before we do that:

​Other Great Non Scale Victories to Feel Good About

  • ​Less Cravings
  • ​More Compliments
  • Less Physical Pain
  • Better Mood
  • Being Able to Add More to Your Workout

Don’t forget that it’s not just about the scale! Give yourself some credit when you have non scale victories too!  

getting-healthy

Important Questions to Ask Yourself About Getting Healthy

I want you to be prepared to take the first step.

There will be temptations, you may come against hurdles but having the right kind of thinking will really help you to
overcome any dieting obstacle.

First, I recommend using a notebook and some note cards that are solely for your diet journey.

Then, write down three separate questions in your notebook. 

1. Do you Truly Desire Change

Do you really want to be healthy?

Do you really want to lose that weight?

The very first step is answering this to yourself honestly.  

Do you really, truly desire change in your life?

Not because another person wants you to, or for an unhealthy reason but because you are ready. Your reasons for wanting to lose weight need to be from you.

If you really really are ready to change and desire it in your heart, write down in your notebook, “I desire change.”

This is a pretty powerful declaration!

You’re the only one who can take action

The Lord will help you with any struggle you have, anything that keeps us from him or doing his will.

We will never be alone.

However he also gives us the tools we need to succeed and we must be the ones to take action.

It has to be you.

You are the only one who can take action in your health journey.

This first question is so important because if you are not truly ready, it will be much easier for temptations and setbacks to get the best of you.

​2. What Would It Feel Like to Succeed

The second question I want you to answer is all about how getting the weight off will make you feel.

How will you feel emotionally? Will you have more confidence, will you feel happier?

What about physically?

Will your clothes fit better? Will you have more energy for your kids, grandkids and family? Maybe the result would be having more stamina to bike ride or go on hikes.

Write down your answers in the notebook.

The Better You Feel The Better You Live

I don’t know about you but I love seeing 60, 70 year olds water skiing or out doing what they enjoy.

Wouldn’t that be amazing for you too?

Everyone desires to
age gracefully, the better we care for our bodies, the more energy and longevity we have and the rewards are well worth our efforts.

3. Why Does It Matter to You

The third question you want to ask yourself is why a healthy life matters, to eyou.

Why does losing the weight matter to you?

This is again a personal question for you to reflect on, it can’t be someone else’s reason, it has to be yours.

It Matters to God Too!

When we don’t feel our best it is hard to do our best for God.

We want to be able to get out there and do the work of his heart.

Being able to live out the fullness of the gifts he has for us and being able to mission, serve and witness is what we are called to have and called to do.

If something like food is holding us back, this is something we have to tackle in faith.

The good news is that with God you can overcome any challenges in your life!

I’m going to next take you through an exercise I do with my clients so we can bring all this reflection and everything learned around full circle.

Create Advantage Cards to Help Keep You On Track

​The answers that you wrote down in truth are going to be important now and later on.

One of the things I have my clients do is to take their whys and write them down on the cards.

These are what I call “advantage cards”.

Write down your top five advantages for losing weight. In addition to what you have already written down, here are some other things to think about.

  • ​What will you gain from your success?
  • How will your success glorify God?
  • How will life be different for you

Lasting change comes from meaningful reasons behind the desired change.
You are going to keep this as a reminder and motivator for daily use.

happy-healthy-woman-with-nature

​Easy Ways to Stick to a Diet and Glorify God

Corinthians 10:31 says, “So whatever you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all for the glory of God.”

This is such a beautiful reminder that God has so many gifts in store for us and wants us to have the desires of our hearts. He is there during the struggles, and the successes.

Something to keep in mind is that we don’t want our eating habits to hold us back from our relationship with the Lord.

This is tough to hear for a lot of people but remember that God wants the best for your life and wants you to be free from anything keeping you from serving him.  

Buffet lines can not be more important than serving the Lord.

If we are
emotionally eating because we are upset about something, that is a problem.

God wants you to come to him with matters of your heart, not food.

I’m going to share with you what I take my clients through to help them stick to their diet plans.

It’s simple to do, easy and Free!

​The Satisfied Testimony Journal Free Tool to Help You Stick to Your Diet

If you visit my website https://designedhealthyliving.com/ you’ll find my free food tracking journal that you can download to help you stay on track.

On the worksheet you will find:

  • A way to keep track of your food intake
  • Questions about how hungry you felt before and after your meals
  • How much water you have drank
  • Any supplements you took that day

Once you download the worksheet, what you do is fill out what you plan to eat for the next two days.

Plan out each meal, a healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner ahead of time and then follow the menu plan you have written.

It is very important that you are honest and not recording what you should have eaten or some other variation of the assignment.

You can do this!

Fill out the date at the top to help you keep better track and do not forget to put in the times you are eating each meal.

For days 3 and 4 you simply cut your portions in half.

It’s really that simple!

This is going to help you understand the difference between
true hunger and feeling satisfied.

And that is what it is all about, learning what satisfied is and what that feels like.

Stick to Your Diet By Understanding This One Word

There's one word that wraps it all together and is a word that can set us free with our weight.

The word is satisfied.

Like I said above you have to know the difference. A lot of weight gain comes from
mindless snacking and overeating and we don’t really ever give our bodies a chance to stop and heal.

It's that simple.

John 15:11 says, “ I have told you this, that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”

Now, when you recognize that Jesus is your savior, that is the foundation that can only come from him, has nothing to do with how you eat or how you live your life.

It can only come from him, but we can experience the
full joy of what God has to offer through his instruction and comfort.

If our minds are foggy, we have no energy and aren’t healthy this can hold us back from what God has to offer. If we choose to eat poorly, over time we can develop anxiety and even depression.

So how we eat actually is a way to become satisfied and to experience more joy in our relationship with the Lord and I just cannot impress on you too much the how true this really is.

lovely-happy-multigeneration-family-having-healthy-dinner

Conclusion

​I have helped so many of my clients overcome their struggles with dieting and witnessed a shift in them as they draw closer to the Lord on their journey.

God want us to be healthy and experience full joy! We need to be healthy to be able to share the gospel, help others and step into the roles we were meant to in order to glorify God.

Sticking to a diet can be challenging, but if you ask yourself why you will find your motivation. When you document your progress you will become so much more involved with the process.

When we learn to be satisfied and do all things for the glory of God we have happier, healthier lives just the way God intended.

If you have any questions on the free satisfied testimony journal or would like to share how God has helped lead you to better health please leave a comment below.

Pomegranates in the Bible | An Arils (seed) Count Signal of Gods Love?

pomegranates-knife-choppingboard

Pomegranates in the Bible
An Arils (seed) Count Signal of Gods Love?

​Table Talk Pomegranates

Families that eat together around the home kitchen table have been proven to be healthier and happier. Here is an interesting Pomegranates in the Bible story of Gods Love, waiting to be discussed at your table.

Pomegranates are a food Jesus would have eaten. In fact our travels to Israel took us to a village discovered to be from the years Jesus walked on this earth and at this village were pomegranate trees. As you learn and enjoy this delicious fruit imagine your family eating them with Jesus.

Pomegranates - because of its color and shape the pomegranate was considered the most beautiful fruit, Bible food in the land of Israel.

Pomegranates in the Bible

Exodus 28:33 (NIV)

"Make pomegranates of blue, purple and scarlet yarn around the hem of the robe, with gold bells between them."

It was stitched on the hem of the High Priest robe; alternating with gold bells.

It was carved into the capitals of the pillars outside the doors of the Holy of Hollies.

1 Kings 7:18

"He made pomegranates in two rows encircling each network to decorate the capitals on top of the pillars. He did the same for each capital."

Inside the pomegranate are beautiful arils, the pomegranate seeds. Legend says there are 613 sweet and juicy arils in each pomegranate. Why this number - what is the significance? The significance is that 613 equates to the number of laws in the Old Testament.

So, let me ask you, Do all pomegranates have 613 seeds?

A food historian who was also curious did his own research. He gathered pomegranates from all over the world, cut them open and counted their seeds.  

What do you think he discovered?

They did not all have 613 seeds - some had more, some had 613 and some had less. When he counted all of the arils and averaged them out - it averaged out to 613!

God continues to show us His Love and Workmanship in everything He created!

Pomegranate Benefits

  • Keeps skin youthful
  • Protects against the sun
  • Prevents inflammation
  • Protects against cancer: especially breast cancer
  • Protects against heart disease
  • Protects against eye problems
  • Also prevents buildup of plaque on teeth

​Enjoy Pomegranates today

Be creative in the kitchen. They can still be found in whole form in the produce aisle of some grocery stores. Buy one - bring it home and then have fun removing the arils. There are several You Tube videos with help to accomplishing this task.

For easier enjoyment of the arils, they can be purchased in the freezer section of the grocery store in packages next to frozen fruit. They go on sale often so that would be a great time to stock up.

Top salads with arils. A salad of spinach, strawberries, feta cheese, sesame seeds plus arils would be delicious. Good enough to not need any dressing.

Add arils to your breakfast oatmeal, in your tea and even in orange juice.
Or - eat them like I do - just a bowl of arils.

Such a delicious way to boost your immune system and enjoy God's goodness.

Here are some of my favorites:

Pomegranates Powder

Add this to your smoothies, salad dressings, tea and desserts:

Pomegranates ​Tea

This tea includes a rich supply of antioxidants and taurine which is widely studied for enhanced alertness, energy and endurance. Perfect for diabetes, high blood pressure, regulates calcuin in the cells, perfect for people who get migraines.

My reason - it tastes really good 🙂

Grow Your Own Pomegranates

​Yes, in most of America Pomegranate trees or bushes do very well. I am looking forward to this new spring when my trees will start to bloom and then bear fruit in season.

Here is one organic garden that delivers trees everywhere. If you live in Virginia they offer a volunteer program: work in exchange for trees.