All throughout the Bible, references are made to the medicinal properties of foods and herbs.
Representing health and longevity from Almighty God, the importance of diet and of preparing and eating food was oftentimes seen as a spiritual act.
If you want to consume some of the most common foods mentioned for their health properties in the Bible, then try these top 10 healing foods.
“Whether you eat, drink or whatever you do, do all for the glory of God ~ 1 Corinthians 10:31”
1. Olives and Olive Oil – Then it shall come about when the Lord your God brings you into the land which He swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you, great and splendid cities which you did not build, and houses full of all good things which you did not fill, and hewn cisterns which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant, and you eat and are satisfied. (Deuteronomy 6:10-11)
The Jews were the elite olive merchants of their day. During antiquity, this precious commodity was used for its healing capabilities, for cooking, to light lamps, for soaps, for cosmetics and even for currency. Olive oil was considered so sacred to ancient culture that it was even used to anoint kings and priests. Hence, the Hebrew for Messiah, Moshiach, meaning “anointed one!”
Research has been conducted that proves regular consumption of olives and olive oil contributes to heart, brain skin and joint health. They have even been linked to cancer and diabetes prevention. Needless to say, this sacred foodstuff has lived up to its ancient reputation!
2. Pomegranate – For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, flowing forth in valleys and hills; a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey. (Deuteronomy 8:7-8)
Tasty, messy and just recently gaining ground in the American market these past few years, several research studies have shown that pomegranates contain strong anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-obesity and anti-tumor properties. According to researchers, “Many beneficial effects are related to the presence of ellagic acid, flavonoids, anthocyanins, and flavones, which seem to be its most therapeutically beneficial components.” Subsequently, pomegranates are being considered valid treatment options for chronic diseases such as cancer, insulin resistance, intestinal inflammation and obesity.
3. Fermented Grapes – May he kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine. (Song of Solomon 1:2)
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has touted for years that regularly drinking a 4-oz glass of red wine will lower your risk of developing heart disease. Nonetheless, because of the inherent dangers in consuming too much alcohol, the Mayo Clinic cautions drinking much more than this amount.
When grape juice is fermented, natural anti-oxidant and flavonoid properties are exemplified through a substance called resveratrol. Consequently, researchers have focused much of their attention on evaluating the health benefits of resveratrol in recent years, which has been linked to chronic disease reversal including diabetes and obesity.
4. Flax – An excellent wife, who can find? For her worth is far above jewels… She looks for wool and flax. And works with her hands in delight. (Proverbs 31:10,13)
One of the most important plant fibers in the Bible, flax has been used to make linen for as long as recorded history. Although it has been widely replaced by cotton in recent years, flax remains one of the most important fiber plants in the world.
Having a rich history of medicinal use dating back to Babylon in 3000 BC, flax seed has been wholeheartedly embraced by natural health and medical circles alike because it provides a natural, vegan source of Omega-3 essential fatty acid, lignans, and fiber. Subsequently, flax can help fight against cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
5. Sprouted Grain Bread – Take wheat and barley, beans and lentils, millet and spelt; put them in a storage jar and use them to make bread for yourself. (Ezekiel 4:9).
In the Book of Ezekiel, God gave the prophet Ezekiel a recipe for what has proven to be the perfect bread as science has recently shown us that it creates the “complete protein,” one that contains all essential amino acids. The main reason that Ezekiel bread is healthier than other breads is because the grains and legumes are soaked and sprouted which makes them easier to digest.
Harvesting “sprouted grains” happens right after the seed has started to sprout, but before it has developed into a full-grown plant. During this critical growth state, the young shoot digests a portion of the starch to fuel its growth. Subsequently, because the grain’s starch has been utilized, the level of vital nutrients including proteins, vitamins, and minerals enhanced. Additionally, research studies have suggested that iron and zinc actually become more “bioavailable,” (i.e. more easily absorbed) after sprouting.
6. Raw Milk – The lambs will be for your clothing and the goats will bring the price of a field. There will be goats’ milk enough for your food,for the food of your household,and sustenance for your maidens. (Proverbs 27:26-27)
Raw milk is filled with the vitamins and minerals that contribute to a healthy dental fluid flow and help maintain strong teeth. Loaded with calcium, vitamin K2, magnesium, phosphorus, and fat-soluble vitamins researchers have carried out a comparative study on the properties of cows’ milk compared to those of goats’ milk and have discovered that goat’s milk may be even more beneficial.
Unlike cows’ milk, scientists from the University of Granada has revealed that data concerning goats’ milk suggests that it could prevent diseases such as anemia and bone demineralization. Additionally, goats’ milk has properties that help with the digestive and metabolic utilization of minerals such as iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium.
7. Lamb – Now you shall eat it [the unblemished lamb] in this manner: with your loins girded, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste—it is the Lord’s Passover. (Exodus 12:11)
Due to the significance of the Passover Lamb and equating that role to Christ, lambs are the most revered animal in history, and the most honored food in the Bible. Lamb is the meat of young sheep that are generally one year old or younger. Due to slaughtering the animal at such a young age, the marble fat content is considerably lower than older varieties of meat, which contributes to heart health and helps prevent again obesity. Rich in protein, vitamin B12, and minerals it is arguably the healthiest red meat on the planet.
On a side note, make sure to purchase local, organic, grass-fed varieties when possible. Grain-fed animals are loaded with genetically modified corn feed, countless additives and are simply not worth the risk.
8. Bitter Herbs (coriander and parsley) – They shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. (Exodus 12:8)
Scholars are not in complete agreement which plants the authors of Bible were referring to when writing about “bitter herbs,” but coriander and parsley generally make the list.
Coriander is the seed of the powerful anti-oxidant and natural cleansing agent cilantro. Europeans refer to it as the “anti-diabetic” because of its uncanny ability to regulate blood sugar, and Indian folk medicine praise it for being an effective anti-inflammatory.
Also used for chronic disease reversal, parsley has been shown to normalize blood pressure, help prevent cancer and offer joint pain relief due to its anti-inflammatory properties. It is a rich source of several crucial vitamins including Vitamin A, B12, C and K.
9. Vegetables – Please test your servants for ten days, and let us be given some vegetables to eat and water to drink. (Daniel 1:12)
Instead of eating the tasty dainties of the Babylonians, Daniel and his friends requested to live on a vegetarian diet. When it was time for them to be presented to the king, Nebuchadnezzar and all of the leaders were astounded to see that the 4 young Jewish friends were more fit and looked better than the other young men who ate the Babylonian fare. Often referred to as the Daniel “diet,” history and biblical text actually support that Daniel continued his vegetarian lifestyle throughout his entire life.
Of all the food groups, vegetables are arguably the most nutrient-dense and safest to eat. There’s relatively no risk in consuming too many of them; whereas, if you eat fruit all day, you run the risk of spiking your blood sugar or developing dental caries because of the excess sugar.
Vegetables are so effective at healing that, according to the National Cancer Institute, cruciferous veggies (broccoli, cabbage, collards, kale, radish etc.) can help prevent cancer because they are rich in glucosinolates – a large group of sulfur-containing glucosides. Known to break down during chewing and digestion, these powerhouse chemicals can slow down and even reverse cancer cells growth. Additionally, it has also been reported that glucosinolates can treat the following health concerns:
- Bacterial and viral infections
- Carcinogenic toxicity
- Tumor angiogenesis (blood vessel formation)
- Tumor metastasis (tumor migration)
10. Raw Honey – Have you found honey? Eat only what you need that you not have it in excess and vomit it. (Proverbs 25:16)
It’s no wonder raw honey is referred to as “liquid gold.” The medicinal applications to the skin and internal body seem limitless. First of all, raw honey is loaded with key vitamins (B1 – B6 and C) and it contains several minerals (calcium, magnesium, manganese, potassium and zinc).
In addition to being a fantastic replacement to energy drinks for athletes and people needing a little boost, raw honey also contains a full spectrum of anti-oxidants and supports the growth of probiotics in gastrointestinal tract including (Bifidobacteria). Another fascinating quality of honey is its ability to help prevent seasonal allergies. However, be sure to purchase the local variety as it will contain indigenous pollen species unlike generic store bought brands.
Who would have thought that you could get nutritional advice in the Bible, huh? At the end of the day, if it were good enough for people back then to eat, it’s probably good for us today.