Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth."
8 Laws of Health
Each of the following principles of health God has designed to cleanse the blood of impurities and to bring us total health -- mind, body, and soul. “Pure air, sunlight, abstemiousness, rest, exercise, proper diet, the use of water, trust in Divine power—these are the true remedies.” (The Ministry of Healing, p. 127)
1. Pure Air: Fresh air vitalizes and carries life and vigor to every part of the system. It helps to purify the blood, which gives life and nutrients to all the body functions and organs.
Air is needed to release the energy from the food you have eaten. This release of energy from food is called “metabolism,” and this process creates heat. Oxygen has to be present for your metabolic fires to burn. Without the air you breathe, your metabolic fires will go out and you will die. Air (oxygen) is a part of nutrition, since food cannot be metabolized without it.
Any activity that limits the fresh air you breathe, will affect your well-being. Avoid smoking and second-hand smoke; unnecessary exposure to air pollutants; poor posture; shallow, improper breathing; tight, restrictive clothing, etc.
“In order to have good blood, we must breath well. Full, deep inspirations of pure air, which fill the lungs with oxygen, purify the blood. They impart to it a bright color and send it, a life-giving current, to every part of the body. A good respiration soothes the nerves; it stimulates the appetite and renders digestion more perfect; and it induces sound, refreshing sleep.” (The Ministry of Healing, p. 272)
2. Sunlight: Sunlight is one of God's most effective healing agents. It has been used to treat psoriasis, jaundice, vitamin D synthesis, depression, menstrual disorders, sleep disturbances, calcium absorption, and both viral and bacterial infections. The benefits of sunlight are great. A nice brisk walk outside will get us the exercise, fresh air, and sunshine that God has so wonderfully given us for health.
A minimum or 30 minutes of exposure to sunlight can provide you with the recommended daily quota of vitamin D. Vitamin D is synthesized from the cholesterol under the skin when sunlight acts on it. Also, allow sunlight to shine into your home to sanitize your living space. In a room, bacteria and viruses are lowest near an outside window.
3. Abstemiousness: Abstemiousness, or Temperance, is self-control. It is abstaining from the things that are harmful, such as alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, and drugs. It is the surrender of self to the control of God's way in our lives. Temperance is living by what is good, and leaving alone what is harmful.
“Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.” (Proverbs 20:1)
“Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.” (Proverbs 23:31, 32)
4. Rest: Rest and sleep are as important as exercise. Good health requires activity should be followed by periods of rest. There must be a balance. It is during the periods of rest that muscle development actually occurs. But without the exercise, there would be no muscle development during the rest period. It is during sleep that the body rejuvenates itself.
Energizing rest revitalizes and refreshes the tired body and soul. Waste products are removed, enzymes are replenished, and energy is restored while the body is at rest. To understand rest, we need to understand stress. With negative thoughts or thoughts of revenge, you cannot get a good rest. With anger or hate, you actually lose endorphins - substances that help control pain and promote the feeling of well-being.
Sleeping seven to nine hours per night for adults is optimal, with more or less than this amount of sleep being associated with greater morbidity and mortality. Adequate sleep allows for repair of body tissues and rejuvenates the immune system. Sleep has also been found to improve learning and memory.
5. Exercise:Exercise outdoors gives us the greatest benefit. Exercise strengthens the heart, lowers blood pressure and resting heart rate, helps retain calcium, increases oxygen, lowers cholesterol and fats in the blood, helps cleanse the bloodstream, increases muscle tone, promotes good sleep, produces endorphins, regulates blood sugar, increases metabolism, reduces stress and anxiety, clears the mind, helps maintain weight levels, aids in digestion, and helps strengthen the immune system.
The following should be implemented daily for 30 to 60 minutes:
Stretching - Stretching and moving all joints to their maximum range of motion. This will keep our muscles and tendons flexible and strong.
Resistance - Resistance-type exercises stimulate the muscles and nerves of the body. Light weights, stress bands, or some types of work provide this type of exercise.
Aerobic - Aerobic exercises, such as walking, are excellent exercises that engage large muscles of the body and can keep a person fit.
It is important to move all of the major muscles and joints in your body daily. The goal is to stimulate the body through activity by increasing the heart rate and breathing rate. Start slow and gradually work toward higher intensity as is safe for your current physical condition.
Note: Please check with your doctor before you begin any exercise program, especially if you have any existing medical conditions.
6. Proper Diet: Optimal Nutrition goes back to the source of the original diet that consisted of grains, fruits, nuts, seeds, and vegetables (Genesis 1:29, 3:18). These foods, prepared in as simple a manner as possible, are the most healthful and nourishing, providing us with all our nutritional needs and give us the nutrients needed to make good blood.
Food is vital to our body as air and water. The body's primary concern is for energy (calories) so that your organs can function, and you have energy to do the things you choose. This energy is obtained by the food you eat.
Plants are our body's best source of energy. They capture the sun's energy and put that energy into three packages usable for people and animals; carbohydrates, protein, and fat. Research studies have repeatedly shown that plant-based foods provide for the best endurance and the lowest risk for cancers, heart disease, diabetes, heartburn and indigestion, and help in maintaining a proper weight.
Build your meals on unrefined, whole foods, such as whole grains, beans, legumes, whole vegetables and fruits, nuts and seeds. These unrefined foods are loaded with the optimal energy for health promotion and endurance. Plant foods are also loaded with vitamins, minerals, and disease protective phytochemicals. They are cholesterol-free, low in fat (except for nuts and avocados - which contain "essential” fat), and contain adequate levels of protein for growth and tissue repair, and adequate carbohydrates for endurance. Eat a variety of plant-based foods of all types and colors in sufficient quantities to assure good health and to maintain your ideal weight.
7. Water: An ample amount of water is essential to life and health. Water helps prevent constipation, flushes the system of wastes and toxins, regulates body temperature, and helps resist disease. Every cell and tissue of the body depends upon water. The human body is about 65-70 percent water, and blood plasma is about 90 percent water. To have perfect circulation, we need to drink plenty of water. It helps the kidneys in eliminating the body of wastes.
Drink fluids frequently throughout the day, preferably before feeling thirsty. It is recommended to drink six to eight glasses of water daily. More is needed if temperatures are high or heavy work is performed.
Sufficient water intake with exercise has been proven to increase endurance by 20-30 percent. Recent studies found that adequate water intake lowers heart disease risk.
8. Trust in Divine Power:Your trust in God is the foundation of all health. Physical healing can be only partial if spiritual healing has not taken place in the soul. We humans are physical, mental, and spiritual beings who depend on God, a power outside of ourselves, for total restoration and healing. Not being able to trust in an underlying cause of stress. This affects the health and is seen in muscle tension, ulcers, and headaches. A we contemplate the Creator and Hid faithfulness to keep His Word to us, we experience the benefits of a trustful relationship, which affects all our other relationships and our health.
The loss of health resulted when Adam and Eve distrusted God and ate what God had forbidden. Good health begins when we start trusting God and put Him back into our lives. This begins the healing process. The beginning of poor health was a result of distrust, not the forbidden food that was eaten.
Understanding and complying with the laws of health assure optimal health. The violation of any of God's laws weakens our system and invites disease. Recognize that transgression of the law produces affliction, so let’s “Trust in the LORD, and do good;” (Psalm 37:3)
“The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.” (Psalm 18:2)