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Eight Laws of Health

"God has ordained laws for the government, not only of living beings, but of all the operations of nature. Everything is under fixed laws, which cannot be disregarded. . . . "The Faith I Live By, page 179, paragraph 2; Chapter Title: Here And Hereafter

We believe acquiring or maintaining good/optimum health has everything to do with lifestyle choices. Therefore we believe the every day, consistent application of the eight laws of health listed below will reward us greatly with improved health and happiness. These eight laws of health govern the whole man--man as a social being, man as a spiritual being, and man as a physical being. If the whole man is attended to, then only happiness and abundant health will be the result. Even in the case where disease has taken a foothold in the body, we believe that the first step in restoring health is through the proper application of the eight laws of health without the use of "drugs". Only if this fails, do we believe in drug use. We are told that:

"Pure air, sunlight, abstemiousness, rest, exercise, proper diet, the use of water, trust in divine power,--these are the true remedies." -- "Ministry of Healing," p. 127.

"Nature will want some assistance to bring things to their proper condition, which may be found in the simplest remedies, especially in the use of nature's own furnished remedies--pure air, and with a precious knowledge of how to breathe; pure water, with a knowledge how to apply it; plenty of sunlight in every room in the house if possible, and with an intelligent knowledge of what advantages are to be gained by its use. All these are powerful in their efficiency, and the patient who has obtained a knowledge of how to eat and dress healthfully may live for comfort, for peace, for health, and will not be prevailed upon to put to his lips drugs, which, in the place of helping nature, paralyzes her powers. If the sick and suffering will do only as well as they know in regard to living out the principles of health reform perseveringly, then they will in nine cases out of ten recover from their ailments.Medical Ministry, pp. 223-224.

Eight Laws of Health

herb imageTrust in Divine Power
herb imageProper Nutrition
herb imageProper Use of Water
herb imageTemperance
herb imageRest
herb imageSunshine
herb imageFresh Air
herb imageExercise

The following statements were made over a hundred years ago with regards to the above. Science is only now catching-up with research to substantiate these statements quoted from the pen of Mrs. Ellen G. White, the founder of the SDA Church.

herb imageTrust in Divine Power

"...Since the laws of nature are the laws of God, it is plainly our duty to give these laws careful study. We should study their requirements in regard to our own bodies, and conform to them..." Counsels on Diet and Foods, page 18, paragraphs 1, 2; Chapter Title: Reasons for Reform

"It is impossible for us in our own strength to maintain the conflict; and whatever diverts the mind from God, whatever leads to self-exaltation or to self-dependence, is surely preparing the way for our overthrow. The tenor of the Bible is to inculcate distrust of human power and to encourage trust in divine power. Conflict and Courage, p. 177

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herb imageNutrition

"I have been shown that the principles that were given us in the early days of the message are as important and should be regarded just as conscientiously today as they were then. There are some who have never followed the light given on the question of diet. It is now time to take the light from under the bushel, and let it shine forth in clear, bright rays." Counsels on Diets & Foods, p. 23

"The eating of flesh meats has made a poor quality of blood and flesh. Your systems are in a state of inflammation, prepared to take on disease. You are liable to acute attacks of disease, and to sudden death, because you do not possess the strength of constitution to rally and resist disease.-- T., V. II, p. 61.

"When we feed on flesh, the juices of what we eat pass into the circulation. A feverish condition is created, because the animals are diseased, and by partaking of their flesh, we plant the seeds of disease in our own tissue and blood. Then, when exposed to the changes in a malarious atmosphere, to prevailing epidemics and contagious diseases, these are more sensibly felt, for the system is not in a condition to resist disease.--U. T., Nov. 5, 1896."Healthful Living, p. 63

"Far too much sugar is ordinarily used in foods. Cakes, sweet puddings, pastries, jellies, jams, are active causes of indigestion. Especially harmful are the custards and puddings in which milk, eggs, and sugar are the chief ingredients. The free use of milk and sugar taken together should be avoided

"Sugar is not good for the stomach. It causes fermentation, and this clouds the brain and brings peevishness into the disposition." Studies on Diets & Foods, p. 144.

"Do not eat largely of salt, avoid the use of pickles and spiced foods, eat an abundance of fruit, and the irritation that calls for so much drink at mealtime will largely disappear." Councils on Diets & Foods, p. 311.

"How can anyone desire to live on the flesh of dead animals, when he has the privilege of using the fruit, grains, vegetables, and nuts that God has given us in such abundance?" Peter's Counsels to Parents, p.26.

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herb imageProper use of Water

"In health and in sickness, pure water is one of Heaven's choicest blessings. Its proper use promotes health. It is the beverage which God provided to quench the thirst of animals and man. Drunk freely, it helps to supply the necessities of the system, and assists nature to resist disease." Counsels on Diets & Foods, p. 419.

"If, in their fevered state, water had been given them to drink freely, and applications had also been made externally, long days and nights of suffering would have been saved, and many precious lives spared.-- H. to L., Chap. 3, p. 62.

"Frequent bathing is very beneficial, especially at night just before retiring, or upon rising in the morning.-- C. T., p. 141.

"A bath, properly taken, fortifies against cold, because the circulation is improved; . . . for the blood is brought to the surface, and a more easy and regular flow of the blood through all the blood-vessels is obtained.-- T., V. III, p. 71. " Healthful Living, p. 227.

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herb imageTemperance

"n order to reach the highest standard of moral and intellectual attainments, it is necessary to seek wisdom and strength from God and to observe strict temperance in all the habits of life."Reflecting Christ, p. 86

"To keep the body in a healthy condition, in order that all parts of the living machinery may act harmoniously, should be a study of our life. The children of God cannot glorify Him with sickly bodies or dwarfed minds. Those who indulge in any species of intemperance, either in eating or drinking, waste their physical energies and weaken moral power."

"But even health reformers can err in the quantity of food. They can eat immoderately of a healthful quality of food." Counsels on Diets & Foods, p.136.

"here are some who would be benefited more by abstinence from food for a day or two every week than by any amount of treatment or medical advice. To fast one day a week would be of incalculable benefit to them."Counsels on Diets & Foods, p. 189.

"Recreation is needful to those who are engaged in physical labor, and is still more essential for those whose labor is principally mental."Counsels on Health, p. 195

"Thousands who are afflicted might recover their health if, instead of depending upon the drug store for their life, they would discard all drugs, and live simply, without using tea, coffee, liquor, or spices, which irritate the stomach, and leave it weak, unable to digest even simple food without stimulation." The Place of Herbs in Rational Therapy, p. 15.

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herb imageRest

"Sleep, nature's sweet restorer, invigorates the tired body and prepares it for the next day's duties. Child Guidance, p. 341.

"In many cases of sickness, the very best remedy is for the patient to fast for a meal or two, that the overworked organs of digestion may have an opportunity to rest."Counsels on Diets & Foods, p. 189.

"God reserved the seventh day as a period of rest for man, for the good of man as well as for His own glory. He saw that the wants of man required a day of rest from toil and care, that his health and life would be endangered without a period of relaxation from the labor and anxiety of the six days."My Life Today, page 140.

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herb imageSunshine

"In the building of houses it is especially important to secure thorough ventilation and plenty of sunlight. Let there be a current of air and an abundance of light in every room in the house. Sleeping rooms should be so arranged as to have a free circulation of air day and night. No room is fit to be occupied as a sleeping room unless it can be thrown open daily to the air and sunshine." The Adventist Home, page 148.

"It would have been better if from the first all drugs had been kept out of our sanitariums, and use had been made of such simple remedies as are found in pure water, pure air, sunlight, and some of the simple herbs growing in the field. These would be just as efficacious as the drugs used under mysterious names, and concocted by human science, and they would leave no injurious effects in the system." The Place of Herbs in Rational Therapy, p. 15

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herb imageFresh Air

"Vigor Declines as Years Advance.--Those who have the aged to provide for should remember that these especially need warm, comfortable rooms. Vigor declines as years advance, leaving less vitality with which to resist unhealthful influences; hence the greater necessity for the aged to have plenty of sunlight and fresh, pure air.--MH 275 (1905)."Mind, Character, and Personality Volume 2, page 747.

"In the location of sanitariums our physicians have missed the mark. They have not used the provisions of nature as they may. God desires that the places chosen for sanitarium work be beautiful, that the patients be surrounded with everything that delights the senses. May God help us to do our utmost to utilize the life-giving power of sunshine and fresh air. When we as a people closely follow the Lord's plan in our sanitarium work, nature's resources will be appreciated."Testimonies for the Church Volume Seven, p. 79.

top of page herb imageExercise

"Many have suffered from severe mental taxation, unrelieved by physical exercise. The result is a deterioration of their powers, and they are inclined to shun responsibilities. What they need is more active labor. This condition is not confined to those whose heads are white with the frost of time; men young in years have fallen into the same state, and have become mentally feeble."Christian Temperance & Bible Hygiene, p. 160.

"Neglecting to exercise the entire body, or a portion of it, will bring on morbid conditions.

"The bloom of health fades from their cheeks, and disease fastens upon them, because they are robbed of physical exercise, and their habits are perverted generally.

"Continued inactivity is one of the greatest causes of debility of body and feebleness of mind.

"Inaction of any of the organs of the body will be followed by decrease in size and strength of the muscles, and will cause the blood to flow sluggishly through the blood-vessels." Healthful Living, p. 134.

"Exercise will aid the work of digestion...The diseased stomach will find relief by exercise."Healthful Living, pp. 169-170.

"Invalids should have out-door exercise. That class of invalids, who have made themselves such by sedentary habits, or constant mental labor, should have a change. It is bad counsel that tells these persons to refrain from physical exercise. The brain-weary ones should, in a great degree, let the mental powers rest, while they, and also those whose habits of life have been sedentary, should stir the physical energies. A part of the prescription for every such patient should be light physical labor, pleasant employment out of doors."The Health Reformer, July 1, 1868.

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