If God is So Good Why Are Black People So Unhealthy?

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(ThyBlackMan.com) I have been in ministry for some twenty-plus years. Like most African Americans, I was nurtured in the womb of the black religious experience. There is no other in institution in a black America that is so wedded to the notion of God and health than the black church. Each Sunday, our pews and pulpits are lined with parishioners and preachers with rotund bellies and all of the aches and pains associated with it metabolic consequences. In the oldest tradition of call and response, we say “Amen!” to the word being preached; we declare “God is good all the time!” with loud voices. But in truth, although we are ‘saved’, we are not well. It isn’t God!

Our Health

To put it bluntly: black people in America are sick; our health resembles that of a Third World nation. In every negative health category, we are at the top. In positive health outcomes, we are at the bottom. Black women have the highest rates of obesity in the Western world, followed by – you guessed it – black men. As a result, we are struck higher rates of metabolic disorders, cancers and diabetes than any other ethnic group in America.

What’s even more shocking is now our unhealthy lifestyles are beginning to trickle down to our children. Obesity’s next demographic are the great-great grandsons and daughters of slaves – who, by the way, on average, were much healthier than their modern day counterparts.

If God is so good, why are we so unhealthy? The answer to that question: lifestyle. The political answer to that question, though, is that we may assume that, because God is so good, we don’t have to do anything – we don’t have to walk, we don’t have to move, we don’t have to do anything but trust God. Right? It’s become a way of life.

How to Change:

Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? I Corinthians 3:16

Simple: stop making excuses and get to moving. Start walking clubs in our communities. Make it a goal to engage in physical activity at twenty minutes per day. Do exercises during commercials of your favorite television or cable program.

We must begin to see ourselves holistically, as more than the compartmentalized versions of Western society.

We must begin to take care of our body, our mind and our spirit. Self-care of our body, mind and spirit is a Divine undertaking. It’s the real meaning of loving one’s self.

A trip to the local gym, a vigorous twenty-five minute power walk and even a few moments in meditation to quiet the mind and reduce the mental stress are all things we can do TODAY to make a difference!

The one thing we absolutely cannot do is NOTHING. If our death rate from disease continues at this pace, our race will be pathologically sick in a generation’s time.

Let’s change the way we eat. Let’s eliminate salt and sodium. Let’s stop drinking excessively.

Most of all, let’s recover that community ethos we had once upon a time when we were colored; when we spoke to each other when passing. That alone will go a long away to reversing the serious illnesses wreaking our communities.

God is good but we must do better!

Staff Writer; W. Eric Croomes

This talented brother is a holistic lifestyle exercise expert and founder and executive coach of Infinite Strategies LLC, a multi-level coaching firm that develops and executes strategies for fitness training, youth achievement and lifestyle management. Eric is an author, fitness professional, holistic life coach and motivational speaker.

In October 2015, Eric released Life’s A Gym: Seven Fitness Principles to Get the Best of Both, which shows readers how to use exercise to attract a feeling of wellness, success and freedom (Infinite Strategies Coaching LLC, 2015) – http://www.infinitestrategiescoaching.com.