Obesity and diabetes levels are still on the rise. That’s according to the State of the States Report released this week.
According to this Gallup Poll, my state, North Carolina had a nearly 2% increase since last year. Twenty eight percent of North Carolinian’s are now obese – a Body Mass Index of 30 or greater. (Calculate your own BMI) Almost 12% of the people in North Carolina have diabetes – the 9th highest state.
Certainly, many people in our country die of weight-related problems each and every day. These deaths are preventable. Let’s take a deeper look.
There are many factors that contribute to the high obesity and type 2 diabetes rates in our nation. Access to health care, the environment, annual income/poverty level and heredity all play a role. But the cornerstone of these two conditions are physical activity and eating habits. The bottom line is that these two lifestyle choices most contribute to both of these conditions and they are almost totally under one’s control. These are choices we make, day in and day out.
Faith and Health
High levels of body fat and high glucose both represent a form of “death.” The Bible tells us that we have a choice. We can choose between life and death. In the Old Testament, God tells his people –
“Look, today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse! You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today. But you will be cursed if you reject the commands of the Lord your God and turn away from him and worship gods you have not known before.” Deuteronomy 11:26-28
Later in the same book, God continues to share his instructions about the choices we have between life and death. He says “Today I am giving you a choice between life and death.” (Deut. 30:15) In verse 19 he urges us “Oh that you would choose life, that you and your descendants may live.”
We all have choices to make each and every day or our life – all throughout the day. We can make choices that are life-enhancing or death-enhancing; good health-enhancing or poor health-enhancing. The choice is ours.
With God in our life in a big way, it’s easier to make healthy choices. It’s easier to make the countless healthy choices that are important in managing our weight. But even that begins with a choice. We must make a conscious choice to involve God in our life day in and day out. It really all begins with this decision.
The more diligent we are in involving God in our life, the more strength he will provide for living and making wise and healthy choices. God can enable us – empower us – to choose to be more active and to eat more nutritious food. One key to this is to relinquish control of your life to God and to live in a more surrendered way to him.
The Bible tells us that God’s Spirit lives in us if we have accepted Jesus into our life as our Savior. Imagine, God lives in us. When we relinquish control to his Spirit, it is actually God that is empowering us as we live. In this case, it is God’s Spirit that helps us to get off our seats and be physically active. It is his Spirit that prompts us to buy and eat healthier food. His Spirit gives us greater discipline. It is God’s Spirit that comforts us when we are stressed and feel like opening the refrigerator and eating a carton of ice cream or devouring a box of cookies.
My hope and prayers for all of you who might struggle with your weight is that you lean more heavily on God and a deeper faith to assist you in making healthier lifestyle choices. That you’ll make a conscious choice to tell him in your prayers that you need his help and that you are unable to make these desired changes on your own.
I hope that you will experience the love of God in it’s full measure and that that you will be empowered by God to make the kind of healthy changes in your life that you might want to make. See the verses in Ephesians 3:16-19
Questions To Reflect On
If your health is impacted by your weight, what lifestyle changes could you make that will help you lose weight?
How much are you really depending on God to help you with these changes?
Does God’s Holy Spirit live in you that he might enable you to make any desired changes in your life?
Resources to Help With Weight Management
An Article – Overweight? Find Freedom From Overeating
Scripture Listing – Scriptures Related to Weight Management
Struggling with life as well as your weight? Desire to know God in a personal way? Desire to have God’s Spirit in your life to empower you to live? Read about God’s love.
To register and learn about The Spirituality-Health Connection: An Introduction – A Wellness Webinar, an online event scheduled for September 3rd, 2009, follow the link provided.