Romans 7:15 and Heart Health

"I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do, but what I hate I do." Romans 7:15.

Have you ever experienced this? Doing things you know are not good for you, but just doing it anyway? Then having a guilty feeling after the deed.

My most recent episodes have been around food I know is not good for me, especially for my heart. My nephew was celebrating his 21st birthday at his mother's home. She is originally from Israel. She made some wonderful sauces and pita bread. Of course this is white flour which is a "no no" for us heart healthy folks. I know this is not a big epic failure, but I had several pieces. I primarily eat a plant based diet and processed white flour is not good for me. I know how good her food is and was compelled to have some of this pleasure. Of course a little is not going to cause harm for one event but then the birthday cake was brought out. I don't remember the name of this cake but only that it's amazing, moist and melts in your mouth. My heart said no but my feelings said go for this sinful pleasure. The resistance was weakened because everyone was enjoying the cake and raving about it. I gave in and had a small piece but did not feel peace on caving into being weak. A week later a friend from church had a retirement party and the food was catered by a person who makes amazing baked goods. Another temptation; lemon poppy seed muffins. But a good Christian friend and a person whom I coached brought half a muffin and shared it with me. I know he has sweet cravings and sharing half was helping him. I did say in a joking way, "the muffin was healthy because it had lemon in it. There is vitamin C and it has detoxifying qualities." Oh! how easy it is to give into things we know are harmful to us. It's so easy to follow the crowd. How often do we rationalize what may be harmful for us. As the saying goes, "to rationalize is to tell yourself, rational-lies." As a health coach and also as someone battling to overcome my heart disease these little failures I shared with you may not seem significant but they can have long term consequences if the pattern is not interrupted. It has a compounding effect and it's not the type of compounding you want. If you have heart disease, it just didn't happen. It's a result of decisions you've been making over years which lead you where you are now. Or, you may be on the path that will lead to poor health. MY experience in working with my cardiologist was a challenge for me. The doctor really cared about me not getting heart disease. He put me on medications and I would follow the plan for a while. It was easy for me to eat foods not good for me, because the medications would compensate and my blood work would be normal. I started not being consistent in taking my medications but would continue to eat an unhealthy diet. Eventually I needed stents. God was watching over me. I never had a heart attack. When I look back over the time that led to my stents, I was never directed to a nutritionist or other professional resources that could work with me. I did feel alone but I was also responsible to seek help I needed. Also, doctors do really care but they are limited on their time and can't follow-up on a regular basis. They're also limited in their knowledge of nutrition. On my journey (and it's a continuous one,) I have been pouring into feeding my mind with the right information about nutrition, involved myself in food networks, reading books, finding recipes that help the heart, finding health professionals who have a more plant based focus, being in God's word and associating with others who may be going through similar challenges. I also have an accountability partner and my diet is primarily plant based. On my journey (and it's a continuous one,) I have been pouring into feeding my mind with the right information... Genesis 1:29 Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food." I just finished reading an article by Barry A. Franklin, PhD, in"Bottomline Health." which focused on exercise. He included a sentence from studies done from the Cleveland Clinic that suggests, "that approximately 85 percent of all Americans over the age of 50 have underlying atherosclerortc cardiovascular disease." That should catch your attention. For all of you who are struggling with issues that can lead to heart disease or have heart disease, it can feel like a lonely, scary battle. It's a daily awareness of what you know is best for you. I fail a lot in my journey but I refocus and continue. I forgive myself. We all need support and encouragement in this journey. It would be an honor to help you in your journey. Please feel free to reach out to me at my email address below.

Your Heart, Your Life, Claim it!