So I have been on this journey to health for a while, and am still working through these two books, Made To Crave and Diabetes Burnout. I just finished chapter 16 of the first, and 17 of the second.
Chapter 17 of Diabetes Burnout is about awareness of hypoglycemic events (Low blood sugars). Since I had not been checking my glucose levels regularly, I was not experiencing very many lows. As I increase my awareness of what my levels are and work to bring them down to the normal range, I am finding I am experiencing more lows. I am adjusting to being back in the normal range, and tending to overcompensate for any elevated levels. This is part of the process, I know. I have already been able to reduce my Lantus dosage by 2 units over the course of the day. Hooray!
Because it has been a while since encountering these lows, I am becoming reacquainted with my body’s warning signs of low blood sugar. A tingle in my stomach when I am awake, and at night, a tingling/numb tongue. Weirdest feeling ever. Its like when your foot falls asleep and has all the pins and needles sensation, but in my tongue. My endocrinologist thought that was so weird, and had never had another patient with the symptom. Yeah, I am unique. 🙂
Needless to say, my symptoms are not the ones found on the average list of “Signs to Warn You of Low Blood Sugar.” We have to know our bodies. I know my body well enough now to “listen” for these clues. I also know my body well enough to know that in this journey of healthy choices, I need more than 1250 calories a day! I am finding maximum satisfaction between 1500 and 1700 calories a day, which is still less than the recommended 2000 calorie a day average, and much better than the 2500-3000 I was eating before!
My glucose levels are not going to even out immediately. It will take time. Just as weight-loss and a healthy lifestyle will take time to develop. Lysa’s Chapter 16 in Made To Crave is entitled “Why Diets Don’t Work.” This is true. There is no miracle pill, no miracle fruit, no miracle over-night fix to issues with weight. Diets get old quickly, especially with all the “forbidden foods and restrictions.” We get fenced in, and all we want to do is break out! Let me dive into the sea of donuts and chocolate cake with buttercream frosting!!!!
This is why diets fail.
Lysa writes on page 122, “So, I am not on a diet. I’m on a journey with Jesus to learn the fine art of self-discipline for the purpose of holiness.” She follows this with 1 Corinthians 10:11-13 “Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come. Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”
I have dwelled on this passage many times. Also many times, I have failed to take the way of escape. What I am learning is sometimes the way of escape appears before we are entrenched in the situation. Like with sexual temptation, the way of escape is prior to being alone with the person of your desire. If we do find ourselves alone with that person, we still have time to “escape” the fall: walk away. All the way up to the moment of the act, we have every opportunity to say no, to get up, to walk away. The earlier we find that way of escape, the easier it is to take it and stand firm. The same is true with food.
On page 123, Lysa continues, “Nutrition, which is food’s intended purpose, means consuming proper portions of healthy choices that enable our bodies to function properly. Idolatry, in the case of food, means the consumption of ill-sized portions and unhealthy choices because we feel like we deserve it or need it to feel better. Now, hear me on this. We aren’t to flee food. We need food. But we are to flee the control food can have over our lives.
Now, as I continue on this journey to health, yes, I am denying myself some things. Second helpings, ice cream, diet soda (and soda in general), etc. are just a few examples. I am allowing a small serving of a sweet treat on occasion, when my calorie intake for the day allows it. Yes, I am watching my calorie intake. I have been able to stay between 1500 and 1700 calories a day this week! With a larger window of flexibility, I am finding success easier. Flexibility, moderation, healthy substitutions are working for me. God has given me knowledge of nutrition so that I can make wise decisions with what I put into my body so that I can be healthy, strong, productive. These are not restrictions, but guidelines. More like expectations instead of rules, if you will.
I wrote about this previously: God gives us warnings against things that are bad, harmful, dangerous, so that we may be protected. We still have the choice to obey or not. “If we are willing to obey God in the areas that he designates as harmful and dangerous then we have the rest of life to enter into company with a Savior who loves us, and who guides and guards us in our walk with him” (pg 126).
A framework of healthy choices helps us maintain our goals and desires, and helps keep our hearts aligned with the will of God.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Be not wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your flesh
and refreshment to your bones.
In Acts Chapter 10, God uses a metaphor of food to teach Peter a lesson:
9 The next day, as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the housetop about the sixth hour[b] to pray. 10 And he became hungry and wanted something to eat, but while they were preparing it, he fell into a trance 11 and saw the heavens opened and something like a great sheet descending, being let down by its four corners upon the earth. 12 In it were all kinds of animals and reptiles and birds of the air. 13 And there came a voice to him: “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.” 14 But Peter said, “By no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean.” 15 And the voice came to him again a second time, “What God has made clean, do not call common.” 16 This happened three times, and the thing was taken up at once to heaven.
17 Now while Peter was inwardly perplexed as to what the vision that he had seen might mean, behold, the men who were sent by Cornelius, having made inquiry for Simon’s house, stood at the gate 18 and called out to ask whether Simon who was called Peter was lodging there. 19 And while Peter was pondering the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are looking for you. 20 Rise and go down and accompany them without hesitation,[c] for I have sent them.” 21 And Peter went down to the men and said, “I am the one you are looking for. What is the reason for your coming?” 22 And they said, “Cornelius, a centurion, an upright and God-fearing man, who is well spoken of by the whole Jewish nation, was directed by a holy angel to send for you to come to his house and to hear what you have to say.” 23 So he invited them in to be his guests.
The next day he rose and went away with them, and some of the brothers from Joppa accompanied him. 24 And on the following day they entered Caesarea. Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends. 25 When Peter entered, Cornelius met him and fell down at his feet and worshiped him. 26 But Peter lifted him up, saying, “Stand up; I too am a man.” 27 And as he talked with him, he went in and found many persons gathered. 28 And he said to them, “You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a Jew to associate with or to visit anyone of another nation, but God has shown me that I should not call any person common or unclean. 29 So when I was sent for, I came without objection. I ask then why you sent for me.”
30 And Cornelius said, “Four days ago, about this hour, I was praying in my house at the ninth hour,[d] and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing 31 and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard and your alms have been remembered before God. 32 Send therefore to Joppa and ask for Simon who is called Peter. He is lodging in the house of Simon, a tanner, by the sea.’ 33 So I sent for you at once, and you have been kind enough to come. Now therefore we are all here in the presence of God to hear all that you have been commanded by the Lord.”
Food is not forbidden. It is not unclean. Some food is better for us than other foods, and that’s where the verse in 1 Corinthians 10:23 comes in: “All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up.
Lysa puts it this way: This is permissible, but is it beneficial? If we ask this question of ourselves before putting food in our mouths, before speaking, before writing, before going on a date, before taking a drink, before making a purchase, etc., we can avoid a lot of mistakes. Granted, we will still make mistakes. And God gives more grace. James 4:6-8a says, But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.