About the Word of Wisdom—A Brief Explanation:
There is a natural link between religion and diet. Spiritual health—the first concern of religion—is linked to physical health, and physical health is most influenced by diet. No surprise then that dietary guidance is given in the first chapter of the Bible. Adam and Eve after being given dominion over fish, fowl, and beasts, are told to make herbs and fruits their ”meat”. (See Genesis 1:29.)
The Mormon Word of Wisdom, a canonized scripture, expands upon the counsel given to Adam and Eve, with seven rules—three prohibitions and four prescriptions, or things to do. Here is my simplified version:
• Avoid strong drinks, meaning alcoholic beverages.
• Avoid the use of tobacco.
• Hot drinks, defined as coffee and tea, are also proscribed.
• Eat “all wholesome herbs” in their season. (Herbs are plants without woody stems, usually annuals, notably vegetables and legumes.)
• Eat “every fruit in the season thereof”.
• Be sparing in the consumption of meats.
• Eat grains, especially wheat, for they are the staff of life.
People who observe the three prohibitions are blessed with improved health and longer lives. This has been established by studies of Mormons in Utah and California. This guidance is inclusive, anyone can gain these health benefits. Seventh Day Adventists follow a similar health code and also enjoy superior health and longevity.
Even greater health benefits come to those who live the four prescriptions of the Word of Wisdom—meaning a wholesome plant-based diet with limited meat. Doctors and scientists have been saying this for over a century, and the evidence just keeps growing. Unfortunately, our culture makes this exceedingly hard to do. You have to be a stalwart individual to eat right. Daily we’re tempted by thousands of unhealthy processed foods, all pushed by billions of dollars in clever advertising. Journalists say we live in a toxic food environment—the industrialization of our food chain is the saddest legacy of the 20th century.
The Word of Wisdom was revealed just as America started the transition from the Agricultural Age to the Industrial Revolution. In fact, the things prohibited by the Word of Wisdom—alcohol, tobacco, coffee and tea—were the first foods to be industrialized, along with sugar. With the benefit of hindsight, this revelation is a prophetic warning that in all our industrializing, we must keep our food as natural as possible. In this society failed.
A new day is dawning—the movement towards a healthier and more natural way of life is gaining momentum. To borrow a word of historic import, it seems a food reformation. The purpose of this blog, Word of Wisdom Living, is to promote this movement by providing information and dialog. Saying is easy but doing is hard, so this blog will suggest 52 small changes which taken together will return us to healthy living. Why not join in?
Note: This is a nonprofit blog; there will be no ads and nothing is for sale. Though an avid student of nutrition, I am neither doctor nor scientist and don’t pretend to be. In fact, that is my credential: I’m a private person studying a public puzzle: how to live. In my search I have read over a hundred books, plus many, many articles and studies. Whatever I have been able to learn, I freely offer for your consideration and comment.