Time, Money, Health: The Conclusion
I never got around to finishing this series because what I thought I was going to say in this final post was drastically changed!
I was going to lay out some baby steps to healthier eating and tell you some specific things our family was doing so that eating healthy was not so overwhelming.
But before I got a chance to compose the post, I started going to my new doctor (who I absolutely love!) and the diet she prescribed was a radical change! Baby steps weren't going to cut it for me.
So much for trying to keep things from being overwhelming!
Basically I had to keep doing all the things I had been doing (local, organic food) but with the elimination of gluten and several other food intolerances we discovered that I had.
That's the extremely short version of it all, but my point is that while I was hoping to preach “baby steps” to you all, in reality I had to practice radical strictness for myself.
No matter what path I would have taken, I believe my conclusion to the whole matter of balancing time, money, and health would have been the same:
The balance isn't the same for everybody.
While I may be allotting a generous portion of our budget for food and spending more time preparing my food, you may be only changing up a few key ingredients in your kitchen.
A year or two ago, my mouth would have dropped open if you would have told me how much we'd be spending on food right now. And back then, it wouldn't have been the right balance for us. But my husband has been blessed with a raise and good food was a priority for us, so we put extra money toward it.
What we spend on food may not be what you're supposed to be spending (or can even afford to spend.)
Here's the mistake many of us make: We think that just because we've found the balance that is right for us, everyone else's balance should look just like ours or they're not doing something right.
For those who have a lower income, the temptation comes to think that those who spend extra money on organic food are being too extravagant, too concerned about their health when “everybody's going to get cancer anyway”, and shouldn't be spending so much money, time, and effort on their eating preferences.
For those who can afford it, and choose to make their health a priority with how they spend their money, it can be tempting to be critical of others who don't eat all the same things you do.
Those on both sides of the spectrum need to ask themselves some questions.
Am I spending my money as wisely as possible? I may not have much, but am I being a good steward of my body with the money I do have?
Is there information regarding my health I know I should pay attention to, but I'm choosing to ignore it because I know it's going to require some financial adjustments? (In other words, I use “I can't afford it” as an excuse when I probably could adjust things to make it happen if I chose to.)
Am I criticizing others for their choices instead of focusing on my personal responsibility to manage my own money and health wisely?
Am I trusting in my food choices to keep me healthy, or am I remembering that my health is a gift from God? If I can't afford all the food I'd like to eat, am I still thankful for what I have and trusting God to keep me healthy? 1 Timothy 4:4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:
As I write posts on various topics regarding healthy eating, (such as my post from yesterday on Why I Drink Raw Milk) I hope you'll keep in mind that these topics are merely for your consideration; not because I'm telling you I think you have to do this or you are inferior to me if you don't. I have come to my conclusions about certain foods gradually and after thorough research of my own. I didn't just decide to start spending extra money because somebody put me on a guilt trip. And I'm not here to put you on a guilt trip, either. I'm here to encourage you and provide resources to help you come to your own decisions on what is right for you.
Tell me, where are you in your healthy journey? Are you still struggling to find the right balance? Or have you found the balance that is right for your family and just need to make sure you stay on track?