"What Would Jesus Eat?"
Among evangelical Christians, that's been a popular question in recent years. At first, the question was simply "What Would Jesus Do?" shortened to "WWJD" on bracelets and bumper stickers. The acronym reminded people to think about what Jesus would do before acting in a given situation.
But since then, "WWJD" has morphed into commands for specific areas of life. "What would Jesus drive?" the recent anti-SUV campaign. "How Would Jesus Raise a Child?" a new release in the Christian bookstores.
And last summer: "What Would Jesus Eat? The Ultimate Program for Eating Well, Feeling Great, and Living Longer." There's also a companion, "What Would Jesus Eat Cookbook."
The author of both, Dr. Don Colbert, is a family physician in a practice of more than 20,000 patients in Orlando, Florida. Seeing people "making the same dumb mistakes," getting the same diseases after years of choosing fast and processed foods, Colbert says, he wanted to educate people about how better nutrition can ward off disease.
But with a title like "What Would Jesus Eat?" and with some of the corresponding content of Colbert's book, he has done what other nutritionists have not usually done: he has raised nutrition to a religious and theological level.
A recent check of Christian bookstore shelves revealed that food, nutrition and dieting are popular topics of books in the "Christian Living" section. Yet most Christian authors don't go so far as to mix food and theology. We looked at several Christian books that keep food to an "eat this and you'll feel healthier" approach.
So why did Colbert take the more theological road?
"I thought I'd go back to the training manual--the Bible--and see what Jesus ate. Lo and behold, Jesus ate the healthiest diet ever developed, the Mediterranean diet."
Colbert's primary goal, then, was to promote healthful eating habits, but looking to the Bible for his subject matter at times propelled his book into theological waters.
What did Jesus eat?
(Please finish reading the entire article at Post Gazette.)
This is a variation on Dr. Don Colbert's recipe for hummus, which is one of his favourite foods in the "What Would Jesus Eat?" diet plan. His version involves buying dried garbanzo beans, soaking them, and then cooking them until they've softened a bit. We couldn't find dried garbanzo beans, so we substituted canned ones, uncooked.
2 cups garbanzo beans (one 15-ounce can plus part of a second one)
1/2 cup tahini (see note)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice of 2 medium lemons
1/2 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Puree in food processor until smooth. Store in refrigerator. Serve with pita bread, crackers, vegetables or other dipping snacks.
Note: Tahini is a sesame seed paste typically found in health food stores.
"What Would Jesus Eat? The Ultimate Program for Eating Well, Feeling Great, and Living Longer"
Dr. Don Colbert, author of "What Would Jesus Eat?" and a corresponding cookbook, offers many suggestions for making healthful food choices. Here are a few:
"What Would Jesus Eat? The Ultimate Program for Eating Well, Feeling Great, and Living Longer" and "The What Would Jesus Eat Cookbook", both by Don Colbert, M.D., are published by Thomas Nelson and are sold at Christian bookstores and by online booksellers such as Amazon.com and Christianbook.com.
Rebecca Sodergren, who grew up in Forward, is a Wichita Falls, Texas, freelance writer. This book review appeared in the Post Gazette on November 13, 2003.
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