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Are You Rusting?

ship rusting

The right coat of paint would have prevented this ship from rusting!

old-rusting-school-bus-sitting-among-raymond-gehman

Do you feel like this old bus looks? Perhaps you are ‘rusting’!

One of the definitions of rust is to ‘deteriorate or degenerate through neglect or inactivity’. Are you rusting? From this definition, it sounds like a lot of us are!

Free radicals are like rust in our bodies.

Free radicals form in our bodies for several reasons, but the most common is from a poor diet. If free radicals are allowed to run unchecked they cause oxidative damage resulting in a variety of debilitating diseases. In other words, we rust!

People who live near the ocean know how damaging salt water can be to anything made of metal. Without antioxidants in our body, the same oxidative damage that can ruin metal, will ruin us. Just like a coat of the right paint can prevent metal from rusting, antioxidants prevent free radicals from ‘rusting’ our bodies.

Your mom was right – eat your vegetables!

Antioxidants are found in a wide variety of our foods, but mostly in fruits and vegetables. Research has shown that natural sources of antioxidants are always best. Because of our Standard American Diet, filled with fast foods and chemical-laden, prepackaged convenience food, most Americans do not get enough fruits and vegetables. It’s no wonder that heart disease, cancer, diabetes and other life threatening illnesses are on the rise!

To get enough natural antioxidants in our diet we need to eat 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. When surveyed, approximately 30% of Americans revealed they never eat raw fruits or vegetables! Not only are fruits and vegetables good for general health but many of them have anti-cancer properties as well. Research suggests if you want the most powerful cancer prevention plan, increase your fruit and vegetable servings to 10-12 per day.

Food for thought..

The tomato has over 10,000 phytonutrient components in it. You can’t match that in a supplement. Want to keep your brain sharp? Eat an apple. Research from the University of Massachusetts Lowell suggests that eating apples “may protect against oxidative damage (rusting) that contributes to age-related brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s, and may help to maintain brain performance.” Gives a whole new meaning to the old adage “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” doesn’t it? Broccoli contains the ingredient sulphorphane which is believed to have anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties. Blueberries contain anthocyanins which help protect against cancer, diabetes, bacterial infections, fibrocystic disease, neurological diseases and inflammation. And the list could go on and on. Do your own research – you’ll find hundreds of ways that fruits and vegetables are good for you – not only in preventing diseases – but healing for already occurring oxidative damage.

Let food be thy medicine.

Hippocrates said over 2,000 years ago, “Let food by thy medicine and let medicine by thy food.” Research continues to prove that food is indeed the best medicine. Most importantly, according to Genesis 1:29-31, God created food for our good: “Then God said, ‘I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.’ And it was so. God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.”  The secret to longevity (to keep from rusting) is in the food that God created for us!

Are you trying to incorporate more fruits and vegetables in your diet? I’d love for you to share in the comments!

Healthy, Wealthy and Wise Tips

“Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.”Benjamin Franklin, from the 1735 edition of Poor Richard’s Almanack

Healthy Tip: Add more vegetables in your diet by making soups. I buy several bags of frozen soup mix vegetables and add onions, chicken broth, canned tomatoes and seasonings to make a delicious homemade soup. Incorporate more fruit in your diet by making smoothies. Use frozen berries, bananas, almond milk and a splash of agave nectar – tastes awesome and you get 2-3 servings of fruit in your smoothie.

Wealthy Tip: Try clipping coupons or using coupon sites to save money on your groceries. I love using Southern Savers because you can add coupons to your grocery card electronically. To get the most savings, only buy an item for which you have a coupon when it’s on sale.

Wise Tip: “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of waters that yields fruit in its own season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.” Psalm 100:1-3

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The Irresistible Future

Happy New Year!

I found this beautiful quote by Oswald Chambers and thought it was appropriate for the new year, “Our yesterdays present irreparable things to us; it is true that we have lost opportunities which will never return, but God can transform this destructive anxiety into a constructive thoughtfulness for the future. Let the past sleep, but let it sleep on the bosom of Christ. Leave the Irreparable Past in His hands, and step out into the Irresistible Future with Him.”

Step out into the irresistible future with Him…what an amazing thought. When we know that our future is settled in Christ what do we have to fear? We can step out in complete confidence knowing that “He who began a good work in us will be faithful to complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6

We can also let our past ‘sleep on the bosom of Christ’ and say with the Apostle Paul,  “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:12-14)

Let’s strive this year to leave the irreparable past in His hands and step out into the irresistible future with Him! 

I Want to Be Healthy

My “I Want to Be Healthy” journey has taken a bit of a downward spiral during the holidays, but I have great plans to leave that in the past and step out into health in 2013!  I hope you will join me!

Healthy, Wealthy and Wise Tip

“Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.”Benjamin Franklin, from the 1735 edition of Poor Richard’s Almanack

Healthy Tip:  I saw Dr. William Sears on a TV program  recently and he gave some great tips on healthy eating using the 4 S’s:  1)  Salmon (wild-caught Alaskan – eat 2 – 3 times per week), 2) Salads, 3) Spices (such as cinnamon, cumin, turmeric), 4) Smoothies (the healthy kind full of delicious fruits and vegetables). In his book Prime-Time Health, Dr. Sears shares with adults and senior citizens how they can live healthy the second half of their lives. This is definitely a book that I’m going to read, and I really like the 4 S’s idea!

Wealthy Tip:  Try Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University this year and get out of debt in 2013!

Wise Tip:  “Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” 3 John 1:2

Do you have goals set for the new year? I would love for you to comment!

2013 Goals

Family Traditions

This is the perfect time of the year for family traditions!  I was very moved by my daughter’s Facebook post on Thanksgiving Day. She wrote,  “I’m thankful for family and for family traditions. I know traditions aren’t always good, but I’m thankful for the ones that surround the holidays in my family. They give a sense of stability each year and something to look forward to. Even though we are celebrating tomorrow, the whole family will be here! And Mammaw is here until Christmas! God has blessed us with so much and I’m truly thankful! He is always faithful to provide for us, sometimes in unlikely ways. I can’t wait until next year, when we get to show our new nephew and three new nieces our traditions and be thankful together! God is so good! I love you all, family!” I wholeheartedly agree with her!

Below are photos from our ‘traditional’ Thanksgiving weekend. And by the way, there was really nothing very healthy on our menu for our Thanksgiving meal! Although I didn’t overdo it on the sweets, I did overeat a bit and boy was I miserable! However, I am committed to getting back on my healthy eating plan and thankful I didn’t have a significant weight gain. I am even more thankful for my beautiful family and our memory-filled time together.

“O give thanks unto The Lord for He is good!”

Do you have family traditions?  I would love for you to comment.

Healthy, wealthy and wise tip for today: Be sure to eat within one hour of rising each morning. Eat every three hours  and eat at the same time everyday. This will balance your hormones and blood sugar levels. However, make sure what you are eating is healthy!

Our “Giving Thanks” decorations.

Cornbread for the dressing baked in my iron skillet. Yum!

Dressing started. Wonder why it’s called ‘dressing’?

My homemade chocolate pecan pie (recipe courtesy of the Neely’s from the Food Network).

Everyone gathered in the kitchen – serving up the Thanksgiving meal buffet style.

Homemade mac and cheese, turkey and dressing, gravy, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, creamed corn, watergate salad, homemade rolls, cranberry sauce, little sweet pickles, olives and Mammaw’s hot potato salad. Delish!

Table laden with homemade desserts: pumpkin pie, pumpkin cheesecake, chocolate pecan pie, coconut cake.  How did that store bought pecan pie get in there? Oh well, it’s from Whole Foods so it much be healthy!

Enjoying our meal and each other’s company!

Remember the kids’ table when you were little?  I do!

After our Thanksgiving meal the family gathered for our annual tree hunt at Clark’s Hill Tree Farm.

Hayride to find the perfect tree.

Cousins having fun on the hayride.

On the hunt…

…for the perfect tree!

Found ours! Will it fit in our house??

The boys found theirs!

Our perfect trees are loaded on the wagon and soon will be gracing our homes.

Boiled peanuts and cocoa before we leave the tree farm.

Even the youngest grandkids love boiled peanuts!

Annual measuring of the grandkids. My how they’ve grown!

Our perfect Christmas tree has found its perfect resting place. And it fits!

All lit and  decorated with our traditional ornaments – some nearly 50 years old. Now we just need some presents!

Our annual family picture…the perfect end to a perfect day!

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