We don’t need to be creative at a master level to gain benefits; we need only lose ourselves in the passionate involvement of whatever it may be that entrances us. Whenever we do something we love, the energy we tap into is more powerful than science’s arsenal of drugs.
—Anatomy of an Illness, Norman Cousins
By some good fortune I recently found a book titled The Power of Consistency by Weldon Long. Although I’m not looking to excel in any type of sales position, as Long’s book would no doubt help me do, this was still possibly one of the most interesting books I’ve read in a long time. I’d like to tell you just a bit about the man who wrote it, and why I believe his experience and journey applies so very much to those of us who want to succeed in our endeavors. For me, and maybe for you, that means recouping or maintaining good health as we enter this New Year.
Might this be a good time to seriously look into healing if you need it? Or find a way to slow down the deterioration that comes along with living in our imperfect world? If that’s the case, Long’s message is for you! Yes, we all want to have happy, successful lives, but without good health we’re doomed to find less success in our endeavors. This is a truism we simply cannot deny. It takes an enormous amount of energy to deal with bad health, and this is especially true when it was our own bad choices or habits that led to the problem.
Weldon Long grew up in a bad environment and ended up in prison for a very long time. On June 10, 1996, he learned that his father passed away. Still behind bars, in that moment he looked deeply into the eyes that glared out at him through the stainless steel mirror in his prison tomb. For as long as he could remember, he’d known only prison, poverty, and struggle. He had no money, no hope, and, by all accounts, no future. As he stared at his pitiful countenance, he grieved over his dead father, the small son he’d left behind, and the life he’d essentially wasted. But then Weldon Long made a plan. As it turned out, this was to be the one thing that would help bring him through his remaining years in prison and put him on a path to a profoundly better life. In fact, Long’s plan helped him become one of the most wealthy and successful people of his time, and he remains so today. I won’t give away anymore of his story, but I highly recommend that you read this fascinating book.
What I will give you, however, is Long’s plan as I apply it. It will bring you a very special gift that no amount of money can buy. A gift without which almost any Earthly success you desire may evade you until you have, at the very least, a mediocre amount of that gift. What is it? Good or at least better health, or the possible healing of some serious physical or mental illness. I hope to outline the why and how consistency is the number one attribute that’s essential to a life well lived. The power of consistency comes from the simple proposition that we tend to take actions that are consistent with the things we repeatedly say to ourselves. To get up in the morning and look forward to a pain-free, lively day requires the power of consistency. It takes some real commitment—and yes, planning.
Good or better health, or the possibility of healing, may be elusive until we acknowledge the fact that nature has made us creatures of habit. When we make something a habit in our life, good or bad, it becomes a pattern we repeat effortlessly. Simply stated, bad health may be due in part to an unwillingness to nurture healthy eating habits. As organic food pioneer Adelle Davis liked to say, you are what you eat. Changing bad habits one at a time is like a set of dominos going down in a row: do one good thing consistently, and you’ll find that it becomes easier to do other good things consistently.
Consistency, according to its definition, is to:
- Adhere to the same principles, course, or form.
- Hold firmly together.
- Stay the course with unrelenting effort.
Before you start your journey, lets look at the five key questions that Weldon Long finally had to answer for himself. These questions helped him form a plan that he worked on consistently, day in and day out, to become successful—a goal he ultimately in fact achieved. Ask yourself:
- What you want.
- What you want to become.
- What you want to contribute.
- What you need to do to accomplish these things.
- What limiting beliefs may be holding you back in life.
I recently wrote about my friend Jane in a post about senior nutrition. Since she truly wants to achieve better health and therefore fulfill her many other goals, I asked her to answer these five questions. Jane’s problem has been that she doesn’t know where to start, let alone how to go about it consistently.
Here are the answers from my friend Jane, now 62 and not in good health:
What do I want?
- I want to have more energy.
- I want to lose between 20–30 pounds.
- I want less pain, or no pain at all, from my arthritis.
- I want to cook simple, healthy meals and snacks.
- I want to have more friends on my journey to better health.
What do I want to become?
- I want to become a member of the Weston A. Price Foundation.
- I want to become a real foods teacher to other seniors.
- I want to become more active in my community.
What do I want to contribute?
- I want to contribute my time as a volunteer at a homeless shelter.
- I want to contribute my food knowledge to low income families.
- I want to contribute by becoming a WAPF chapter leader.
What do I need to accomplish these things?
- I need to become a member of the Weston A. Price Foundation.
- I need to learn how to make easy nutrient dense meals and snacks.
- I need to eat a daily diet of whole foods and whole food supplements.
- I need to spend less time daydreaming and more time doing.
- I need some modest exercise and relaxation for 30 minutes twice a day.
What limiting beliefs may be holding me back in life?
- I don’t believe I’m young enough to start a new way of living.
- I don’t believe I can learn how to enjoy cooking.
- I don’t believe I can stay with this plan.
As you can see, answering these five questions forces you into the stance of thinking realistically about your life. Like Weldon Long, you can dramatically change your life to the good. When you answer these questions to come up with your own plan, include even those hopes and dreams that seem totally unrealistic at the moment, and soon you’ll be on the road with a well-thought-out map. You can stop thinking and start doing. No more daydreaming about what could be…if only. Remember that many of us, without really realizing it, depend solely on positive thinking, affirmations, and other types of mental exercises. Without consistent action you may find yourself where you were last year—sick and tired of being sick and tired!
Possibly the most difficult thing we can do is allow ourselves to form new habits. Why is that? More than likely, it’s because we all want it now and with little effort. Sally Fallon says in essence that whole foods lovingly and properly prepared are a type of spiritual sustenance to the body and mind. After taking a serious look at my overall health challenges, this idea helped me do more to achieve optimal health than anything else.
Hopefully I’ve encouraged you to begin the journey that will take you from your field of dreams to the real world you want to build. Let me now share some food recommendations and suggest whole food supplements that may allow you to stay the course as you rebuild your health, lose unwanted pounds, and get more energy to achieve your God-given destiny and live out your purpose to the highest degree possible.
Tips from the Traditional Cook: Building Your Toolbox
An essential step in rebuilding your health, or bringing it to a higher level, is learning the dynamics of your subject. Getting to a better level of health means you’ll need to learn new things, like how to transition to what Sally Fallon calls an ancestral or traditional diet.
This is the foundational first book that we all used to start our journey to better health. In a previous post titled “How to NT a Recipe,” I talked about why this cookbook is so essential to keep in your toolbox going forward. Sally Fallon lays the foundation on which all traditional diets have revolved for thousands of years. She reintroduces these principles and foods to us, and the result is enormous success as people recover from devastating diseases. Please read it from cover to cover; it’s an awesome adventure.
Cook Your Way to Wellness DVD & Tell Me More Booklet
If you’re new to the Weston A. Price Foundation or still haven’t ventured into the most critical requirements of a traditional diet, this 90-minute DVD and booklet that teaches and demonstrates the methods in Nourishing Traditions will help. This then is the second most important tool to keep in your toolbox. Sally Fallon calls it “a great companion to Nourishing Traditions! Perfect for beginners new to Nourishing Traditions principles.”
I can only say wow after reading Fallon’s latest book on the health-giving power of bone broth, bone marrow, gelatin, and more. This is another must-have in your toolbox! Along with many awesome recipes, Nourishing Broth will give you a comprehensive understanding of how these special bone broths can help with numerous ailments, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, psoriasis, wound healing, infectious disease, digestive disorders, cancer, mental health, and sports fitness. Another phenomenal tool you’ll definitely want to own.
Standard Process Whole Food Supplements
The best tool for nutritional imbalances. The reason these are my favorite whole food supplements is that, unlike synthetic supplements that may be made in some laboratory with manmade substances, Standard Process supplements are made with real food. Quoting Bernard Jensen (1908–2001): “No therapy or drug known to modern medical science can rebuild tissue that has been damaged by disease or trauma. Food alone can accomplish this feat. It is for this reason that nutrition is an indispensable weapon against disease.”
My second recommendation is that you consider consulting a holistic practitioner if you’re unfamiliar with your nutritional needs. If you plan to follow a traditional diet, make sure your holistic practitioner understands the food philosophy of the Weston A. Price Foundation—you don’t want to end up going vegetarian or being put on soy milk, tofu, or some other antinutrient diet.
It’s also important to remember that supplements must be considered part of your food budget. Many of us think we can’t take supplements due to the cost, but if you and your practitioner choose wisely, you’ll find that whole food supplements will definitely add to your wellness and far outweigh the cost to your health of going without. Remember, it takes much more energy to be ill and out of balance, so find a holistic practitioner who knows the Standard Process product line.
If you’re ready to get started on your path to a traditional diet, try these nutrient dense recipes.
Classic Bone Marrow Recipes from Sally Fallon Morrell
Note: The key ingredient in both of the following dishes is bone marrow. You can find Fallon’s recipe in Nourishing Traditions and Nourishing Broth.
Bone Marrow Custard
- 2 oz. bone marrow
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 whole egg
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- Prepare the marrow as indicated. It should be a pale color, not grey.
- Blend cream, marrow, and eggs. Season to taste.
- Pour into 4 small buttered ramekins, place in hot water, and bake at 300°F for about 20 minutes, or until the custard is set. Let cool before unmolding. Serve as an accompaniment to meat.
Tomato Marrow Soup
Use the marrow from the bones used to make stock for this delicious soup—the red of the tomatoes will cover up any grey.
- 2 medium onions, sliced
- 3 tbs. butter or ghee
- 6 fresh tomatoes, seeded, peeled, and chopped
- ½ cup white wine or vermouth
- 6–8 cups beef stock
- 4 ozs. bone marrow
- Sea salt and pepper to taste
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- About 1 cup cultured cream
- Gently sauté onions in melted butter until very limp and golden brown. Add tomatoes and sauté over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until all liquid has evaporated.
- Add wine or vermouth and boil down slightly. Add beef broth and marrow. Bring to a simmer. Skim off any froth that may rise to the surface and simmer about 15 minutes.
- Mix with a handheld blender. Season to taste and serve with cultured cream.
This unusual recipe comes from a medieval Dutch cookbook. The pasties—called by the wonderful name of sluberkens—were typically served as a first course; modern tastes might prefer them for dessert.
Makes 6 servings.
- 3 ozs. bone marrow
- ½ cup rapadura or maple sugar
- 2 tbs. currants
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 2 egg yolks
- About 1 cup yoghurt dough (page 485 in Nourishing Traditions)
- 2 tbs. melted butter
- 1 tablespoon rapadura or maple sugar
- Combine marrow with rapadura or maple sugar, egg yolks, and cinnamon. Stir in currants.
- Roll dough into 6 thin 5-inch rounds and place a spoonful of filling into each. Fold over and pinch edges.
- Brush each with butter and sprinkle with sugar mixture. Bake at 350°F for about 20 minutes.
Photo from iStock/ezza116