7For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land, a land with flowing streams, with springs and underground waters welling up in valleys and hills,8a land of wheat and barley, of vines(grapes) and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive trees and honey…” Deuteronomy 8:7-8
At a time when everyone from Mitt Romney to Mrs. Duggar feels compelled to use the bible to determine how we should live our lives, you would think one of them would use scripture to attack our American diet. It is very clear what the bible says about processed foods. They are an abomination before God.
Why isn’t Deuteronomy 8 every bit as valid as Leviticus18:22? The bible is the bible, is it not? OK. It’s not. But even so, imagine if we did eat a diet rich in whole grains such as wheat and barley, fruits such as grapes, figs, and pomegranates. Or if we limited all fat to olive oil and all sugars to honey? And what if I replaced my diet coke, coffee, and chardonnay liquid diet with that which comes only from “springs and underground waters”?
It only makes sense that if we use the bible to define marriage, discourage birth control, limit the rights of women, and a whole lot of other crazy things (the Amish even use Genesis 1:26 to defend their relatively new business venture–puppy mills), we need to take just as seriously what the bible says about food. In other words, if you are going to demand that being gay is wrong because the bible says it is, then you better be ready to give up pork-on-a-stick, Big Macs, and frozen pizza.
Here’s what we would get if we followed Deuteronomy 8:
Barley and whole wheat would significantly lower cholesterol. Pomegranantes, a superfood full of antioxidants, would help us fight cancer. Grapes packed with a compound called reservatrol, would reduce our risk of stroke. Figs, a fabulous source of potassium, calcium, and fiber would protect us against macular degeneration, bone density loss, and postmenopausal breast cancer (and a whole bunch of other things). And finally, drinking water instead of diet coke? The health benefits are endless—everything from moisturizing our joints to transporting nutrients in the cells, to regulating body temperature.
We would be a healthier America if we stopped worrying about God creating us “man and woman” or that “a man doesn’t lie with another man” and started following the rest of the bible. So go eat a few figs and top it off with a glass of pomegranate juice. Why? Because it’s in the bible.