Some of today’s healthiest foods were also eaten by our favorite biblical figures.
Our health is so vital to the Lord that in 1 Corinthians 3:16-17, He calls our bodies temples of God. Remember, we are commanded not to take in things that will harm what is so precious to Him. God’s commandments concerning our physical health are for our spiritual good. Proverbs 3:1-2 says, “My son, do not forget my teaching but let your heart keep my commandments, for the length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you.” He promises to bless us physically and spiritually if we honor what the Lord commands in our hearts.
While we will face temptation in our day-to-day lives, we are happier when we are doing right by our bodies. We are called to honor our temple to enter His. Therefore, consuming the right foods is so important. Luckily, the Bible is an excellent guide to what foods we should and shouldn’t consume. Here are five biblical foods you should eat daily.
Bread has been a staple food around the world for thousands of years. People continue to consume it because of its convenience, portability, nutrition, and taste. Exodus 29:2 says, “And from the finest wheat flour make round loaves.” Bread was commonly eaten by those living in biblical times. In fact, bread was eaten at just about every meal. It is estimated to have provided at least 50 percent of people’s caloric intake. The bread they ate was mainly from barley flour, which was easier to grow than wheat. Some breads are more nutritious than others, so be mindful of what you’re taking in. Bread made with sprouted grains is a good option. When grain is sprouted, it’s easier to digest. Ezekiel bread, which is referenced in the Bible, is a type of high fiber made with only sprouted grains and no flour. This is also another healthy option.
Around the Sea of Galilee and the Jordan River, small scale fishing was part of the agrarian economy. We see evidence of this in the story of Jesus’ disciples. Some of them had been fishermen in the Sea of Galilee when they met Jesus. Mark 6:43 says, “And the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces of bread and fish.” During biblical times, a variety of fish from both fresh and saltwater was available.
Fish, particularly fatty fish, can have really positive health benefits. Fish like salmon, trout, and sardines are rich sources of omega-3s. These are a significant building block of the brain, and good health. Omega-3s also play a role in sharpening your memory and improving mood. Your mind also uses omega-3s to nerve cells, which are essential for learning.
Fruit is an integral part of a healthy diet. It was also an essential source of nutrition for the Israelites, particularly, olives, grapes, and figs. Grapes were typically used for wine, but there were times that they were eaten fresh at harvest time. They were also dried as raisins for storage. Additional fruits eaten during biblical times were dates and pomegranates. Dried fruits are an efficient source of energy, so they were taken as provisions for journeys. Diets high in fruit are associated with all sorts of health benefits, including a decreased risk of many diseases. If you’re not eating a lot of fruit, consider adding some of these biblical fruits to your diet.
Honey is often called “liquid gold” because of its incredible health benefits. Raw, unprocessed honey, which is what they would have been eating in biblical times, is loaded with enzymes and potent antioxidants. Raw honey also contains bee pollen, which points to its ability to help with natural allergy. Consuming just one tablespoon of raw honey can help your immune system build a tolerance to local pollen.
Olive oil is regularly recommended as part of a healthy, balanced diet, and for a good reason. Olive oil is made from the fruit of the olive. Research shows that olive oil, particularly extra virgin olive oil, contains antioxidants, inflammatory compounds, and numerous heart-healthy nutrients. According to the National Library of Medicine, diets rich in extra virgin olive oil, like the Mediterranean diet, are linked with a lower incidence of atherosclerosis, cardiovascular diseases, and certain types of cancer.
Our mental alertness is affected by our diet, so the less attention you give to your physical well-being, the less attention you can give to the people who matter most. When we see the health of our parents, children, and even friends declining, we often do everything to challenge them to live healthier lives. Who better to set the example?
Remember, the enemy is a tempter – with a mission to break us down physically and keep us from being our best selves. Whether you’ve found yourself tempted to eat more, sit on the couch more or both, know that God wants more. He wants us healthy and active, so we can be victorious and triumph over all evil confronts us.
If you’re not eating the right foods and keeping your health in check, you limit your ability to glorify God. Giving your body to the Lord by keeping a proper diet is one of the greatest gifts you can give Him
Lesli White is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth with a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications and a concentration in print and online journalism. In college, she took a number of religious studies courses and harnessed her talent for storytelling. White has a rich faith background. Her father, a Lutheran pastor and life coach was a big influence in her faith life, helping her to see the value of sharing the message of Christ with others. She has served in the church from an early age. Some of these roles include assisting ministry, mutual ministry, worship and music ministry and church council.