|Posted on August 5, 2020 at 10:20 AM|
Photo by Bridgette Thoms on Pexels.
I have to say that overindulgence is so mainstream. What I mean is so many people in our country think it is normal, and those who eat healthy, low-calorie foods are “unusual.” Our health insurance company requires employees and their families of my husband’s company to talk with a health coach about health goals. These coaches help you make progress, supposedly. The quirky thing is they don’t know what to do with someone who has health issues and lives a healthy lifestyle. One of them practically called me a liar when I told her what I usually eat and my fitness plan. “No way! No one eats like that.”
“Yes, way. I am a certified personal trainer and could do your job. I do eat healthy.” I replied. Although I have problem foods, I don’t keep them in our home. I learned a long time ago how to stay clear of foods that, if left alone with them, I’d devour them in a heartbeat.
Sadly, our society is hooked on unhealthy, high-calorie food that is low in nutrition. It is difficult for so many people to leave these foods alone because of their addictive qualities-- either chemically or emotionally. Like an addict looking for a “fix,” these individuals peruse the store shelves and restaurants for their favorite foods. They don’t fully realize what is happening to their health—eliminating these foods on one’s own is tough. If you know Christ, then you have an advantage: the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome being hooked and be able to walk away from it.
I posted this on a meme last week, “If we pray asking God to helps us with our will power to resist temptation, then we must be prepared to make a 180-degrees turnaround and walk away from it.” What I mean by this statement is that we can take our difficulty to the Lord in prayer. Since we are in Christ, we have access to the throne of God to ask Him for what we need and expect Him to answer it. What we fail to realize is our need to follow that prayer with the appropriate action. We must turn the opposite direction from the temptation and walk away. It sounds simple, but it really is tough to do. God’s Word says, “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13 NIV. When we trust Him to help us overcome temptation, He will indeed help us steer clear of it.
The only way I’ve found to truly overcome temptation is to follow these tips:
1. When the temptation is right in front of you, tell Satan to take a hike because you are a child of God.
2. Turn the other way with clenched fists, asking God to help you resist this temptation.
3. Unclench your fists, heave a sigh, and walk away from it.
4. Stay away from it!
It is far better yet to avoid temptation in the first place. Here are some practical strategies I teach my clients and group members to avoid temptations that could wreck your totally healthy living plan:
1. Clear tempting foods out of your home. It works best not to allow them to come in-- no exceptions.
2. Fill your fridge and pantry with healthy, nutritious, low-calorie foods that taste delicious.
3. Keep fresh-cut veggies and fruit available for snacking, without fatty, salty, or sugary dips. Learn to love them the way they are.
4. Allow yourself a small mid-morning snack of ½ a serving of carbs and ½ serving of protein. You can avoid a blood sugar crash this way, since a crash will drive you to hunt down food-- any food. This can also be a great snack if you get hungry in the evening.
5. Set active, non-food get-togethers with your friends and family. If not possible, brown bag your meal or snack.
6. Never sit by the serving table at picnics or other events. Go up to get food once, then sit down as far away as possible—no seconds or thirds.
7. Give yourself six to eight weeks to detox from troublesome foods. The cravings will diminish. After that time, only allow yourself one serving per week of only one treat. It gives you something to look forward to at the end of your week. Sit down and savor it.
8. Avoid eating out except at restaurants with healthy and low-calorie options. Only order from those options.
9. Stay away from the fast-food drive-thru and cafes at the gas station. Pack your lunch or snack. If you accidentally left it home, stop at the grocery store to pick up what you need—healthy, low-calorie food.
10. Eat fresh fruit and veggies without dip, or a small salad, and drink water before you go to a special event that will serve food that isn’t good for you. Only get one small serving of what you want, but don’t go back.
You can absolutely do this with the Lord in the lead! Invite God to lead, guide, direct, and divert you in your food choices; He will always follow through. Your part of this prayerful agreement is to follow His direction allowing Him to show you the way away from temptation. May God bless you!