In the 4th century BC Hippocrates said: “In food excellent medicine can be found.”1 In the 1800s Ellen White said: “The disease and suffering that everywhere prevail are largely due to popular errors in regard to diet.”2
Questions for reflection:
- Do you know what kind of food is excellent medicine?
- Do you know what the popular errors in the diets of today are?
- Is your diet creating health or disease?
Well, to be honest, many of us don’t know the answers to these questions. Firstly, we don’t get taught correctly at school. Secondly, very few health practitioners seem to be aware of the important role that diet plays in a person’s health. Thirdly, we sadly don’t often think about this until we get sick.
Let me introduce you to three of our Irish Mission ladies: Nomsa Gusha (Irish Mission Health Sponsor and Chartered Physiotherapist), Heather Keough (Cuisle Centre Director and Qualified Nurse) and Csilla Andrasi (Ranelagh Church Member and Certified Nutritionist and Plant-Based Chef). Through a combination of duty, personal experience, and a love and concern for people, they worked together to came up with a plan to educate and challenge people regarding their diets.
Their Goal: educate people regarding the effects of meat, dairy, and processed foods (yes, that includes vegan foods!) on the human body.
Their Challenge: a 21-day Whole Food Plant-Based (WFPB) diet!
Main Course Development
Csilla is living proof that diet alone can improve health. She has been doing so under the guidance of her approving doctor. “It changed my health and my life,” she says. Csilla has decided to make a difference in the lives of others and has been sharing her journey on Facebook. This is where Nomsa Gusha learnt about it and found the inspiration for this IM health challenge.
Nomsa teamed up with Heather and Csilla to develop the program, and then promote it with flyers and notices across the Mission. They all supported the challenge fully. Nomsa enjoyed it so much that she went on to create another 21-day WFPB challenge with a group of friends just a week after completing the challenge!
Prior to the launch of the challenge two “Eat and Live Well” Zoom sessions were held. Csilla and Dr Nomsa Mapango (GP in South Hampton, UK) presented information on how certain foods affect the human body negatively and how healing is possible with a change in diet.
A Facebook group was created to provide a supportive community for the participants. They were provided with recipes and more health information. Many mouth-watering pictures were shared of their delicious meals.
The Proof is in the Pudding
Here are some comments from a few of the participants:
"I really enjoyed the challenge and am inspired to try the WFPB diet."
"My health improved, even recognised by my colleagues."
"I enjoyed trying new food and knowing that it was healthy."
I hope you are starting to feel inspired too! “But where to begin?!” you may be asking.
- Start slowly – begin by exchanging a few meals in the week with WFPB ones.
- Stock your cupboards with healthy whole grain foods and plenty of fresh fruit and veg.
- A general guide is: if it doesn’t look like how Jesus made it, then it it’s processed.
- Learn to check the label
- The fewer ingredients the better
- If you don’t know what it is, be wary
- It’s always good to see the word “whole” when it comes to grains
- 4g of sugar = 1tsp
- Variety is the spice of life – become a culinary explorer!
- Educate yourself by reading the excellent and scientifically proven advice in Counsels on Diet and Foods — E.G. White
- For some great WFPB recipe ideas check out Ireland’s own The Happy Pear - Recipes
So, what are you waiting for?! Eat and be Healthy! The Lord will bless your efforts to maintain your body temple (1 Cor 6:19).
If you would like to learn more about improving your lifestyle in any area, go to GC Health Resources - Adventist Health Ministries for more information.
2 Ministry of Healing p. 295