What Do You Want? The Four Y's Behind Healthy Eating


Leonard Sweet, in his book Soulsalsa, says, “Just as the Health industry is moving from treating disease to creating health, so the church must redesign itself as a place that creates wellness rather than attends the sick. And wellness incorporates body, mind and spirit.”

1. You want to control your eating?

When we think of caring for the body, most of us automatically think of diets. First Corinthians 6:19-20 says, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own, you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”

Many people say they have the right to do whatever they want with their own bodies. They think this is freedom, but this type of freedom is actually bondage, people enslaved to their own desires. It boils down to, Who do we belong to? If you live in a building owned by a landlord, you try not to violate the building owner’s rules. Because our bodies belong to God, we must not violate his standards for living. When we become Christians, the Holy Spirit fills us and lives in us. We no longer own our bodies. “Bought at a price” refers to slaves purchased at an auction. Christ’s death freed us from sin, but it also obligates us to his service.

2. Your food philosophy really matters. 

Our society is very food-focused. Ads on tv, billboards, and magazines show us coupons, recipes, new restaurants, and fast food deals. Food is in front of our eyes, noses, and mouths all the time. Our role as women is very food-focused. In most families, we are the ones who plan the food, so we think about it, buy it, put it away, prepare it, store it, fix it, warm it up. Food is on our minds all the time! Food is to be enjoyed, not something to be worshipped or given too much attention.

Fad diets are often used as shortcuts for quick weight loss. But fad diets are what Dr. Phil McGraw, in his book The Ultimate Weight Solution: The 7 Keys to Weight Loss Freedom, calls “external weight locus of control.” He says, “If you persist in thinking that your weight is controlled entirely by external forces, you’ll have a difficult time losing unwanted pounds.” Page sixty-one says, “In fad diets, we control what we eat but we fail to learn to control ourselves!”

3. Your motivation makes a difference.

What do you want? Do you want to feel better? Do you want more energy? Do you want your clothes to fit? OK, so you want to lose a few extra pounds? The key to successful weight loss is making yourself responsible for your own choices and actions. Calories do count. It helps to be reminded and have a little accountability. In a recent interview with Dietician Janet Johnston from San Joaquin Community Hospital, she says, “Patients that check in to see a hospital dietician, are asked to do a 24-hour food recall, more extensive evaluation asks for a food diary of 1 week.” Janet also says, “Those that kept a food diary for 30 days, writing down everything they ate and drank, lost 10 pounds!”

4. You must plan ahead for healthy eating.

Any time we change habits, it takes discipline, making proper choices for healthy foods. This involves planning ahead and purchasing healthy foods, not fast foods. We must choose healthy foods. There is no quick fix or shortcut to weight loss.

Plan ahead in fast food lines. No FRIED food, only grilled chicken and salad selections. Watch intake of bacon, cream cheese, sour cream, or coconut, which are all high in saturated fat.

Instead use turkey bacon, cream cheese, or sour cream.

No shortening or lard—use olive oil.

Use a low-fat diet—more chicken, turkey fish.

Think healthy—no fried foods.

Limit red meat to one time per week.

Choose really lean red meat when eating and always trim the fat.

Use low fat milk or soy milk.

Portion control is key when consuming yogurt, cottage cheese, salad dress, and butter.

Use fresh fruits and fresh veggies.

Always use portion control.

Drink eight eight-ounce glasses of water per day.

Our metabolism slows down as we get older. Women have more of a challenge with weight loss; we are often shorter with less muscle mass, making it more of a challenge to keep our weight off. A good rule of thumb for balanced weight loss, after you have consulted your doctor before beginning any diet, is a 1,500–2,000 calorie a day diet, depending on your weight and activity level.

Dr. Scott Connelly, in his book Body Rx, says, “Good nutrition is the best tool we have to transform an unfit, flabby body into a trim, attractive body. The simple act of eating the right foods in the right amounts can produce a remarkable difference in your body composition, quickly and painlessly.”

“Therefore, I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” —Romans 12:1–2

So now you’ve confirmed your food philosophy and revved up your motivation. Why not begin your journey to a healthier life today?

Let’s pray:

Father, thank you for reminding us of your care and concern for us. Thank you for entrusting us with our bodies. Help us to take better care of ourselves so we can serve you more efficiently. Help us to be honest with our friends and family about our need for accountability. We commit this journey of eating healthy to you. Give us strength, wisdom, and victory. In Jesus name, amen.

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