Home Made Health
This is an excerpt (chapter one) from "Home Made Health" by Raymond and Dorothy Moore
Eat, Drink and Be Blessed
During our college days, veteran psychologist Guy Wolfkill often raised his index finger in a solemn admonition which came to make a lot of common sense to us. "If you want to live the fullest life for the longest time," Dr. Wolfkill warned, "you must learn to sacrifice present pleasures for future benefits." Sounds simple, doesn't it? But it isn't, at all. In fact, your daily habits are almost sacred to you, and your appetite is usually the most sacred of all.
Said less cleverly: If you are determined to have a genuinely happy life, you must pay the price. it is not expensive in dollars, but it is in sense. It comes only by self-control, not by luck or special blessing, except as you may have long-lived ancestors whose heritage of health may give you some advantage. And the better an ancestor you are--if you can look ahead that far--the more grateful your descendants will be for their heritage of health.
Try an experiment with us as you read this chapter, and perhaps this book: Check your wisdom--your reasoning power--against the instincts of a mouse, a rat, or a dog. The mouse, remember, can reason but little. Like any animal except humans, he depends more upon instinct. Humans, the superior race, are given power to reason things out. Given the choice between white or whole wheat bread, oiled or natural nuts, white or brown rice, the average mouse or rat will invariably take the latter. Few animals will eat to gain more weight than is best for them--unless, that is, they are domesticated by man (like fat cats and dogs). As you read, see how you react to the scientific and clinical evidence in this book. How do you choose?
Our Western influence has been so pervasive in diet that top specialists in the Orient hold us accountable for introducing white rice, the staple today of the oriental diet. The peer pressure of the West was so powerful during World War II that brown rice--which most Japanese were forced to eat for economy's sake, was disdained as "prisoners' food." Even though Japanese nutritionists and physiologists noted the astonishingly taller growth of their youngsters of the War generation, the appeal of the West and their latent appetites for junk food recaptured the food market and still reigns today. Such is the appetite of man.
If we don't take time to be well, we'll have to take time to be sick. Sound health is a gift few of us appreciate until we lose it. And for many that is too late. Yet the highest and best development of our physical, mental, spiritual and social powers largely depends upon our health. Good health is as crucial for making happy parents and children as they are for making a happy home. This is why we set out to give you some principled health hints as the most recent volume in our series on happiness and fulfillment in the home.
God always sets before us an ideal--a star to reach for, a goal to seek. And His fondest wish for us is that we will allow Him to help restore in us His image which was lost in Eden--godliness, which is fashioned according to the best of biblical and scientific data available to us along with our experiences in seeking to reach this goal. We have learned much in the last ten years and even more in the last five--and we are still in the process of implementing the things we know. The first two chapters present a crucial setting for lifestyle examination. If for some reason you can't bear this "preaching," please move on to Chapter 3.
Wouldn't it be great if science could discover a magic pill which would bring health to everyone! Or would it? We agree that our society would be in a much worse situation than it is if scientific discoveries had not added twenty years to our lives.
Yet medical science is baffled by new diseases it can neither explain nor cure. And it has made more than a few errors: drugs which have backfired with serious side effects and treatments which have killed more than cured. Would you welcome insights on some fundamentals of health which were given to man a long time ago, not only to remedy disease, but also to prevent it--and early death?
Suppose you find that you can stop the knock in your car's motor by either reducing its compression or buying a higher octane gasoline instead of your current brand. Which would you choose? Perhaps you decide against reducing compression because you need all the power you can get to climb those hills on the way home and to pass on that two-lane highway, and besides you find compression-reduction expense too high. Your mechanic also advises against reducing compression, yet suggests that you do something soon or you might irreparably damage your engine. In which event, of course, you could trade in your car for a new one!
So you decide to buy the better brand of gasoline--which also is cheaper and gives better mileage. But the service station is five miles down the road, and your present station attendant is an elder in your church (There go the peer pressures!). His youngsters are pals with your boys (There they go again!). And, woe is you, his wife is your darling's best friend! What do you do?
This is exactly where most of us are in coping with our bodies' demands--except that we can't trade for a new one if this one breaks down. It is a risk even to order a new part for your body!
Evidence of Maturity
Just how mature are you? Do you value truth? Are you determined to find it? And then to accept and live by it decisively regardless of its inconvenience or the risk your friends and neighbors might think you are a little strange? There are hundreds of health theory books, but few that are willing to face frankly the destructive life-styles which pervade Western society today. These we seem to dearly cherish--or else we have become dangerously addicted to them.
We have set out to bring you solid scientific facts based on biblical principles which have been proven in the lives of thousands with the hope that you will recognize in these a way of life to prevent disease and be a blessing to all. There are divine reasons for every sound health habit. These are built into every cell of our bodies and govern every activity of our lives--including exercise, attitude and mental health, breathing, cleanliness, diet, dress, elimination, liquids, rest, recreation, recuperation, regularity, relaxation, sunshine, temperance and balance, and ultimate faith. God operates by principle and in an orderly way. He did not "experiment" when He planned the human body and He gave you and me principles which are absolutely fundamental.
Living by Principle
But again, when you live by principle you always find that there is a price to pay. Some simply are not that interested in future benefits. One dear Christian friend of ours clings to her cigarettes as if she will never have to meet her future. She insists that Christ will somehow "relieve" her of her problem "at an appropriate time." Another valued colleague with a family history of heart disease, candidly and honestly admits, "I like my lifestyle," even though in fact his is more of a "death style." We have neither chided nor quarreled with either of these unique people, yet what they are saying and acting out is, "My mind is made up; don't confuse me with facts."
One of our physician friends tells of a technique she sometimes uses and which more physicians might try: One of her patients had a series of distressing symptoms whose causes were well within his ability to cure. Instead of suggesting remedies, she wrote her patient's name on her prescription pad and began making notes while asking him what he would do if he were the doctor. After gentle urging, he hesitatingly suggested some solutions--e.g., less coffee and red meats, more exercise, more sleep, and no alcohol. These the doctor faithfully recorded on the prescription blank, signed her name, and handed it to him--an excellent self-prescribed program to solve his own problems.
Those Good Doctors
We strongly support the role of able, licensed physicians. Unfortunately, many of them are not well informed nutritionally and do not know how to prescribe the makings of a sound lifestyle. On the other hand, many worthy doctors are informed and vow that 90 percent of our ailments would go away if we simply did what we know we should do. Yet somehow we do not do what we know we should do. We pass off this advice, preferring immediate solutions over those which require lifestyle change. We hope that "a good night's rest" helped along by a sleeping pill and a couple of aspirin will take care of the situation--now!
Many otherwise honest doctors are certain that in order for their practices to survive they must give most people a "quick fix." They know that we don't want to face the consequences of our actions. We will do it for our cars and our pets, but not for our bodies.
Most of us have better sense to challenge the law of gravity, because if we jump from a cliff, we know that the results will be immediate disaster. But since there is in most cases a delay in the natural laws of our bodies, it is easy for us to think, Never mind, it won't happen to me. Then when we least expect it, and perhaps when we are living our lives to the fullest, our neglect catches up with us and demands payment in full! Cancer, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, and heart failure take their toll. Nuisance illnesses--allergies, colds, indigestion, constipation--meanwhile have their day.
Prevention or Cure?
In a lecture to a medical audience in Doncaster in 1984, Dr. Denis Burkitt said something scary: "I used to labor under the delusion," he admitted, "that doctors and medicine had a profound effect on the health of a community. This I now see as a total fallacy. They have a profound effect on sick people and sick people are very important. But you never reduce the frequency of a disease by improving its treatment. I've had to ask myself . . . Has any disease been reduced significantly because of improved treatment?' With the possible exception of some highly contagious diseases, the answer is, 'No.'
"I spent twenty happy years as a surgeon in Africa," the famed physician soberly recalled. "I enjoyed it all. I helped some people, I hope. I helped to train some African surgeons. But let me be honest. I made no impact whatsoever on the health of the community I served. If I had spent my twenty years in charge of a team digging wells and latrines I would have done far more for the health of the community."
So Dr. Burkitt made a change. He reminisces on what he did before and what he has done since:
"I'm not sorry I did what I did, but the point . . . is that it is of little use doing curative medicine unless we are also doing something to prevent disease." He illustrates his point by telling of a cartoon that his daughter drew: Water is running at full force from a tap. The sink is overflowing. Water covers the floor. Some highly dedicated, well-trained, hard-working professionals have arrived in full regalia to take things in hand. Their goal, of course, is to keep the floor dry. Their solution is to mop the floor day and night. they don't even have time for wives and children. It never occurs to them to turn off the faucet. Finally another professional comes by and asks why they didn't turn off the faucet. here, Dr. Burkitt suggests, we have the modern doctor, dentist or nurse who is becoming more and more oriented to prevention and less and less to cleaning up diseases. He is distressed that he spent thirty years mopping before he found the faucet.
Dr. Burkitt is still regretful that "about 99 percent" of health expenditure in England goes into "floor-mopping" and one percent into turning off taps. he would like to see the day when preventive-medical people will make as good a living as those whose focus is remedial.
The Western Example
Common among the comparisons made by medical missionaries are their stories of the many degenerative diseases common to modern Western culture but practically nonexistent in communities eating traditional foods. Nauru, a small Pacific island only twelve miles around, neatly underscores the differences between the Third World and the West. In 1952 the Island's natives had little degenerative disease such as diabetes and heart trouble. then large deposits of phosphates were discovered there, and the people, next to the oil-rich Arabs, became the richest in the world.
As they became affluent they adopted Western lifestyles, and before long, 40 percent of the population over age twenty was diabetic. Obesity is now rampant. They now have appendicitis, are expected to develop coronary heart disease, and gallstones also are in prospect.
If you are a philosopher of sorts, you know there are at least two ways to look at living. Some call the first, "altruistic." It is living for the future, for others. The second is today commonly called "narcissistic." It is living only for the here and now, self-centered, indifferent to others. The attitude of the first is "To heaven with me!" and the second beckons you elsewhere. While the results may be delayed, they are as certain as life and death, heaven and hell. And a lack of knowledge is no excuse when the information is available.
The warning, "My people [God's people] are destroyed for lack of knowledge" (Hosea 4:6), is as physical as it is spiritual. Many otherwise godly people are finding out too late that these two cannot be separated without risk.
This has special meaning for Christians--and for many Muslims and Jews--for we know that the closer we get to heaven, the more heavenlike our lifestyle will be. Like the apostle Paul, whether he eats or drinks or whatever he does, his first concern is the glory of God (I Cor. 10:31). His diet will be as near as possible to heaven's diet, his thirst will be quenched by things he will likely find in the New Earth. His daily health plan will be one which builds his body.
We do not offer comfortable, indulgent words, partial truths that go only halfway for fear of colliding with convention. With the help of God and highly qualified internists, health educators, preventive medicine specialist, and nearly fifty years of unusually successful family health, we offer whole truth, logical truth, clinically and scientifically supported truth.
Take care that you do not confuse these truths with conventional living, and turn from them because they are not what most people do. We know that this sounds bold. We also know it works because we have tried it. If you are determined to be logical, read on. If you happily adopt the program it suggests, we are certain your life will be much richer and more nearly disease-free. If you are not interested in common sense in health, nor willing to make even some of the necessary changes, you will be uncomfortable here. This book will be a pain. Put it down.
Dr. Milton G. Crane, a specialist in hypertension and for many years a teacher in a major medical university, was another physician who, like Dr. Burkitt, became a tap turner. He asked himself a hard question: "What should you do when you know what is causing premature death in over half of your patients and are convinced that you know the cure?" He answered this question by leaving the medical school to enter full-time practice of preventive medicine.
Dr. Crane now administers the widely known lifestyle change program at Weimar Institute east of Sacramento in Weimar, California. The institute is establishing records in arresting or reversing such degenerative diseases as arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, atherosclerosis, and is helping many in weight control. Although, in his conservative way and for medical reasons, he makes no claims regarding cancer, some of his patients claim remarkable results.
Dr. Crane and his staff of physician specialists, physical therapists, nurses, and other personnel follow all the divine laws described in this book, not diet alone. yet he singles out animal products and refined foods as the main factors that cause degenerative diseases.
Life Style or Death Style
In assessing what really determines health, these physicians are finding that total lifestyle has a greater influence than heredity, environment, and medical science all put together. Recent estimates suggest that the various influences run about like this: Medical 10 percent, Heredity 21 percent, Environment 16 percent, Lifestyle 53 percent. Your lifestyle--or death style--is simply the way you live, and the way you live will determine the kind of health you have. This has been demonstrated by epidemiologic and demographic studies and is often determined by the availability of foods, the social customs of the people, and, most of all, by the degree of "civilization" they have attained. The real meaning of civilization is told by the Bible: about those who would sacrifice present pleasures and those who would not.