During my first year of marriage I started experiencing the effects of eating a mostly processed “dead food” diet. I gained almost 50 pounds during my first pregnancy, but after losing the weight by eating better and exercising, I kept losing without trying. I began to feel sick. I was hungry no matter how much I ate, and I had no energy. Every morning I woke up with very painful hunger pains. I had to sit on the side of my bed with my head over my knees. I felt hot and had absolutely no energy. I had a horrible headache every morning as well, with congestion in my ears and sinuses. The congestion in my ears was so bad that one or both of my ears were completely plugged. I would eat and then feel hungry within an hour. I was unable to go for walks or work in the yard, something I loved to do. I had a hard time staying awake to read a book to my baby. I was very backed up and felt constantly bloated. I chose to be happy, but I felt irritable all of the time.
I had many experts look over me and many tests done, but no one could help, so I felt compelled to search things out on my own. I knew something wasn’t right, and I wanted to figure it out. As I was led to people, books, and resources about natural health, the most profound and powerful feeling moved through me from head to toe, and I knew that my body could heal. The Spirit whispered to my heart through the gift of the Holy Ghost that I was born capable to heal. It makes sense! We are creations of a loving Heavenly Father. Look at the magnificent mountains, breathtaking sunsets, beautiful fields of flowers and trees. We are the most precious creation of all. Surely we are born capable to heal!
I started to eat more fruits and vegetables and a little less processed food. I also started exercising more consistently. I began to feel better with even these small changes! It was so exciting and brought so much hope. I had been living in fear and despair for so long that feeling hopeful was so refreshing.
It wasn’t easy. I ran into some challenges as I realized I was addicted to food. I prayed for help and never gave up. As I continued to research and read, I was able to make bigger and bigger changes in my diet. It was extremely motivating to learn how the body works, what it needs, and why! Knowing what processed food was doing to me emotionally and physically made it easy to say no when I craved it. I started feeling so good. I never knew just how bad I felt until I started feeling better. The energy, clarity and balance I felt became my new motivation to eat healthy and take care of myself.
Making small changes made getting healthy doable for me. Slowly, the color in my face came back, then the energy and a healthy weight balance. But the most profound healing I experienced was emotional stability and a clear mind. What used to cause me to break down and feel depressed and lost did not affect me like it used to. I found that I felt closer to Heavenly Father and was able to receive answers from him more clearly and more often.
With my second pregnancy I began to miscarry at 3 months. I read all I could and prayed. I was impressed to use specific herbs and to eat a strict healthy diet. It was easy to do because it was for this spirit that I knew needed to come to earth. When I delivered that baby boy full term, the doctor told me my son was a miracle baby and that he really didn’t think he had any chance of making it. The same problems happened with my last 2 pregnancies and both were delivered full term healthy and strong!
After a few years of studying in the holistic natural field, literally devouring everything I could read on the subject, I felt prompted that one day I would teach and support others to heal. It was still a few years after that thought that I realized the information I was reading and following was identical to the Word of Wisdom. Through Heavenly Father’s guidance, I learned that the Word of Wisdom is much more than just staying away from coffee, tea, and drugs. It was also about consuming the right food. The food we have been blessed with that grows from the earth is a gift from our Creator, the one who created us. This food not only feeds our physical body but also our mind and spirit. It affects our mood and our energy and blesses us with the ability to put our spirit at the forefront. Instead of the natural man controlling us we are able to decide what our destiny is and what we want.
I love the scripture in Moses 2:29:
And I, God, said unto man: Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree in the which shall be the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
That verse sparked something inside me leading to much research and prayer on how much animal product I should consume. I felt inspired to eat none or very little unless plant-based food is limited. As I slowly replaced animal products with more fruits and vegetables and other healthy alternatives I began to feel a significant change. I felt lighter and more energetic. I slowly cut animal products out until one day I realized I just didn’t crave them any more, other than cheese cravings every now and again. The China Study by T. Colin Campbell is a powerful and informative book on the subject of meat consumption and healthy living. The story of Daniel and the King is a great example of the blessings gained when consuming plant-based food. The best part about light and knowledge is each person can try it out for themselves and see how they feel, and trust their own experience.
We are given a beautiful promise in verse 19 of the Word of Wisdom that we can “find wisdom and great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures.” I love this promise! I have been blessed with answers, guidance from on high, I would have never found on my own. This has brought so much stability, direction, and joy to my life. Satan no longer has a hold on me through pain in my body and addiction to food. I have harnessed the natural man in me, learned how to manage my thoughts and emotions and enjoy success and great joy.
Heavenly Father has guided me along the way, letting me know what he wants me to teach and leading me to those who are ready and willing to learn. I started a business as a Holistic Health Coach; it has been a blessing to watch the lives of others change by taking caring of the bodies they were given. I have watched client after client heal from tumors, high blood pressure, thyroid disease, infertility, depression, anxiety, excess weight, skin problems, rheumatoid arthritis and more. More importantly, and usually surprising to my clients, is the clarity, confidence, and success they feel, along with a renewal in relationships with spouse, kids, parents, co-workers and best of all, with God.
When we feed our body healing food, exercise, meditate, bask in the healing sun, forgive and serve others, we are then able to gain strength. We are able to see our self-worth clearly, connect with Heavenly Father on a deep level, strengthen relationships around us, and fulfill our purpose. Those that I have been blessed to help have then gone on to help many others. Our actions are like a small pebble thrown in the water, which creates many ripples and is so far reaching.
I am very grateful to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I know Heavenly Father wants us to feel good, to be free from disease (mental and physical), and to use our creative powers in serving others as we go. Instead of always needing others to be sent to help us, we are able to be more of a tool in His hands to serve others and help prepare the way for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Cynthia Sumner is 36 years old and lives in Eagle Mountain, Utah. She and her husband have 4 children. Cynthia is a Holistic Health Coach and Mentor, Certified Nutritional Herbologist, Speaker and Author. She and her family love to run, bike, hike, play sports, and dance. She loves to help others move forward and can be reached at 801.369.1235 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can find more information and about Cynthia and the services she offers on her website: www.greenhealingleaf.com and www.cynthiasumner.org.