The Word of Wisdom is a law of health revealed by the Lord for the physical and spiritual benefit of His children. On February 27, 1833, as recorded in section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord revealed which foods are good for us to eat and which substances are not good for the human body. He also promised health, protection, knowledge, and wisdom to those who obey the Word of Wisdom.
In the Word of Wisdom, the Lord revealed that the following substances are harmful:
Alcoholic drinks (see Doctrine and Covenants 89:5–7).
Tobacco (see Doctrine and Covenants 89:8).
Tea and coffee (see Doctrine and Covenants 89:9; latter-day prophets have taught that the term “hot drinks,” as written in this verse, refers to tea and coffee).
When people purposefully take anything harmful into their bodies, they are not living in harmony with the Word of Wisdom. Illegal drugs can especially destroy those who use them. The abuse of prescription drugs is also destructive spiritually and physically.
The Lord also declared in the Word of Wisdom that the following foods are good:
Vegetables and fruits, which should be used “with prudence and thanksgiving” (see Doctrine and Covenants 89:10–11).
The flesh “of beasts and of the fowls of the air,” which is “to be used sparingly” (see Doctrine and Covenants 89:12–13).
Grains such as wheat, rice, and oats, which are “the staff of life” (see Doctrine and Covenants 89:14–17).
To those who keep the Word of Wisdom, the Lord promised:
“All saints who remember to keep and do these sayings, walking in obedience to the commandments, shall receive health in their navel and marrow to their bones;
“And shall find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures;
“And shall run and not be weary, and shall walk and not faint.
“And I, the Lord, give unto them a promise, that the destroying angel shall pass by them, as the children of Israel, and not slay them” (Doctrine and Covenants 89:18–21).
The best course is to completely avoid the substances that the Lord prohibits in the Word of Wisdom. Those who have engaged in addictive behaviors can stop and become free from addiction. Through personal effort, strength from the Lord, help from family members and friends, and guidance from Church leaders, anyone can overcome addiction.
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“Word of Wisdom,” True to the Faith
Addiction Recovery Program, LDS Family Services
“Word of Wisdom,” Encyclopedia of Mormonism
“Emotion and Addiction,” Ensign, October 2016
“The Lord Has Given Us a Law of Health,” Ensign or Liahona, February 2012
“He Told Me, ‘No Way,’” Liahona, July 2010
“Addiction Recovery: Healing One Step at a Time,” Ensign or Liahona, June 2009
“Run and Not Be Weary,” Ensign or Liahona, June 2009
“The Hot Chocolate Mishap,” Liahona, December 2007
“The Night of the Test,” Liahona, September 2007
“Good Choices,” Liahona, October 2005
“Sharing Time: ‘Ye Are the Temple of God,’” Liahona, May 2002
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“Word of Wisdom,” Lesson Helps for Teaching Children
“Word of Wisdom”
“The Word of Wisdom (February 1833)”
“A Brand New Year: Physical Health”