The festive season is pretty much known as the season of weight gain. From the work Christmas dinners, to reunion lunches and the inevitable Christmas food haul, my poor body has not had any chance to take a breather. It also doesn’t help that the festive food that is consumed is high in saturated fats, sugars and E numbers. And boy, oh boy, I sure am feeling the consequences. Before I came home for my one month Christmas break, I was doing so well. Cycling around 6-8 miles every day, eating clean and keeping my mind active; I never really felt tired or sluggish. Fast-forward to a week after Christmas and I feel like I need to constantly be in bed. A short three weeks and I seem to have undone three months of hard work. How and why did this happen? Surely three months tops three weeks?
You see, when we consume these not so clean foods, we are overloading our body with unnecessary junk. Usually, if we eat something nutritious and ‘clean’, our body extracts those nutrients and incorporates it into our body. Whether it is protein or carbohydrates, if it is eaten cleanly and in moderation, it aids our bodies. Yet with processed foods, the chemicals that are added into it are usually composed of refined carbohydrates, refined sugars and a whole lot of additives (ranging from unnatural food colouring to preservatives). When these ingredients enter our body, they enter in high quantities – did you know that one original Krispy Kremes Glazed doughnut contains 2.5 teaspoons of sugar? I know that I could easily inhale half a dozen of them without noticing. And frankly, processed foods are addictive. Ever tried to just eat one Pringle? Before you know it, half the tube is empty! The body tries to absorb as much as it can, but just because it absorbs a lot does not mean that you’re using it all. And so, the stuff that you don’t use gets stored in the body – usually as fat.
As fat accumulates, so do a number of problems – ranging from reduced insulin sensitivity to an increase in bad (LDL) cholesterol. And the cycle continues as tiredness and sluggishness sets in, and energy seems to be on the decline even though we are consuming so much of it. It’s not a pleasant feeling – forever feeling tired and worn out.
This then goes on to affect our mind – thinking becomes a chore, focusing becomes harder. It’s as if our minds are constantly clouded. We cannot sit still or pay attention to get work done – everything just feels very urgh. The Bible speaks about having clarity and being sober minded in 2 Timothy 4:5 – and we could easily dismiss it and say that its talking about illicit drugs or alcohol, but we should not forget that food can easily affect us in similar ways. And what’s even scarier is that it could affect our relationship with God. 1 Corinthians 10:31 pretty much sums it up – “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
So as we enter 2016, let us try and glorify God in everything that we do. It will be hard – for me at least. I love everything sugary and processed but is it really worth it to shun myself from God? It’s a pretty deep thing and it’s about time that I acknowledged it. After all, let’s just remember that “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17). I, for one, want to be a new creation in everything that I do. I also realise that there might be times when all I want to do is pig out on junk, but I pray that God gives me the strength to carry on serving Him with my all.
Happy New Year everyone, let us start on a new page and glorify God!
P.S – Every time it gets hard, remember 2 Timothy 1:7; “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline”.