“I Strive to Be Healthy by…” Ensign, Mar. 2014, 14–17
Here young adults share their patterns of healthy living based on teachings from the Word of Wisdom, from other scriptures, and from our latter-day prophets. How have these teachings blessed your life? These young adults bear testimony that as we learn and honor these teachings for healthy living, we will receive the promised blessings.
In today’s world, addictive substances are sometimes viewed as a way to deal with pressures and stresses. In addition, many drink coffee because they feel they need extra energy. Because my mother taught me the importance of good sleeping habits, I know that these additional substances aren’t necessary; adequate rest is a much more effective solution (see D&C 88:124). When I get a good night’s sleep, I have more energy for the day. I am better able to handle the stresses of life, my mind enjoys increased clarity, and I am better able to work under pressure.
Anthony Castillo, Florida, USA
Being healthy and living the Word of Wisdom (see D&C 89) are not merely about staying away from coffee, tea, tobacco, alcohol, and harmful drugs; good health is also about fueling my body with good things and wisely engaging in activities that will enable me to function optimally. I am passionate about mountain biking. By maintaining my physical and spiritual health, I can pursue my passion and know that I will be blessed with strength and endurance.
Brock Dunlap, Texas, USA
We learn from the scriptures that the soul has two parts: body and spirit (see D&C 88:15). Gardening is a healthy hobby that nourishes both. It’s hard work; it would be so much easier to run to the store to pick up my veggies and herbs. However, the benefits of gardening go far beyond having access to healthy food. I love the moments of focused meditation that come along with working in a garden. It is a time that I can clear my mind of distractions and focus on the task at hand. Also, gardening is a way for me to gain momentum for living a healthy lifestyle. When I garden, I find that I’m more aware of what I’m eating throughout the day and that I’m more inclined to exercise. It is truly energizing. And when I treat my body well, my spirit benefits also. I feel closer to Heavenly Father and know that I’m becoming the soul he wants me to be.
Laura Gauthier, Illinois, USA
For a long time it was difficult for me to get any fruits and vegetables into my diet because of some serious food allergies. I could hardly eat more than four blueberries at a time without feeling ill. When I discovered green smoothies, everything changed. At first my body struggled, but over time my allergies diminished substantially and I became full of energy. I love creating new smoothies, and I try to put the most nutrient-dense and colorful fruits and vegetables into them: kale, Swiss chard, spinach, lime, peaches, mango, strawberries, coconut, and so on. I am grateful for the Word of Wisdom and for the blessings I’ve received as I’ve incorporated its principles into my life.
Tara Walker, Idaho, USA
Being diligent in both exercising and eating right has helped me realize how blessed I am to have a healthy body and how important it is to take care of it. I want to be able to live a long, healthy life. I want to be in the best physical, mental, and spiritual condition I can be for as long as possible so I can reach my full potential on earth. I think that is one of the reasons why our Heavenly Father gave us teachings in the scriptures and from living prophets about how to stay healthy—so we will be able to do what we came to earth to do and to carry out His will.
Allyson Macy, Utah, USA
For me, exercise is one of the best ways to rejuvenate my body and my mind. When I get carried away thinking about problems and questions that I have, it is exercise that helps me see things more clearly. I don’t always run or lift weights; sometimes I just go for a walk. It’s interesting that after exerting energy to exercise, I always have more energy and feel more alert. When I get in a routine and exercise regularly, I have a happier outlook on life. I know that the Lord has given us a stewardship over our bodies. Exercise is one way that we can show Him that we are grateful for the blessing of a mortal body.
Ryan Brown, Michigan, USA
I know that the Word of Wisdom is a true code of health for both our spirits and our bodies. As I have learned more about how to eat well, exercise, and seek balance in other aspects of my life, I have gained a deeper understanding of the sacred relationship between our bodies and our spirits. I have learned to respect my mortal body and be grateful for it, no matter what is going on in my life. My testimony of the importance of good health has been reinforced through teachings in the Doctrine and Covenants and teachings from our living prophets. I know we are blessed when we seek to follow these teachings and live them fully.
Christine Baird, Texas, USA
My favorite blessing promised in the Word of Wisdom is that we can “find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures” (D&C 89:19). For a long time, this was a very abstract phrase to me. But now I understand that this promise includes improved self-discipline and self-control. We gain greater power to exercise our agency because our minds are clearer, our bodies are stronger, and our hearts are at peace. As I live the Word of Wisdom and maintain a healthy lifestyle, I find that the Lord more readily answers my prayers for health, peace, and joy.
Linda Flores, Washington, D.C., USA