Sometimes it can be so difficult for us to tell the origin of a problem in our thinking and behavior. Is it a spiritual issue, a medical issue, a side effect of a medication, a nutritional issue or a combination? These things can be tough to discern – which is probably why Jesus instructed us not to judge others. How can we possibly know all the things that may be going on in a person’s soul, mind, and body at a given moment?
As a pharmacist, I am aware that sometimes behavioral/emotional problems can stem from people eating things with food coloring (especially red #40), preservatives, or just a lack of a healthy diet in general (our normal Western diet is probably the worst diet in the world nutritionally, unfortunately).
Sometimes emotional/behavioral issues come from things like thyroid problems, messed up hormone levels, PMS, brain cancer, sleep deprivation, not enough time in the sunlight, other kinds of tumors, strokes, low oxygen levels, illness, pain, low blood sugar, low blood pressure, and a whole myriad of health problems. Of course addictions to drugs/alcohol or to anything, really, can greatly affect mood and emotions, often creating irritability or even hostility.
Other times medications create mental/emotional/behavioral issues – antihistamines, decongestants, birth control pills, narcotics, prednisone, energy drinks, and others. Sometimes the first few weeks someone is on certain meds for depression or bi-polar or other psychiatric meds can create major mood issues and even thoughts of self-harm, the same can also happen when these drugs are quickly discontinued.
(My purpose in this post is not to give medical advice. I just want people to realize that there are many medical reasons for emotional/behavioral issues – please talk with your doctor or pharmacist about medications or diseases that may be causing a problem for you. Some medications cannot be abruptly discontinued – especially psychiatric meds, some blood pressure meds, prednisone, some narcotic pain meds, etc… Talk with your doctor before discontinuing any prescriptions.)
Some people find great improvement in their mood and attitude when they “eat clean” – you can google that phrase or “clean eating” for lots of resources. The basic idea is that you try to eliminate preservatives, artificial colors, refined sugar, refined white flour, genetically modified foods, unhealthy fats, additives, and chemicals. Instead, the goal is to eat lots of fresh vegetables, some fresh fruits, certain dairy products, fermented foods that have naturally good bacteria, whole grains, low-fat meats, and healthy fats. (I have actually started doing this myself in May of this year.)
Sometimes there are things that are solely spiritual issues. We are going to be talking more about how to address spiritual issues in future posts. And sometimes it can be a combination. I have seen wives with major health issues improve physically as they dealt with lies they were believing spiritually and I have seen some women’s health issues improve dramatically when they release bitterness. It is all connected – body, mind, and soul in ways we will never fully understand in this lifetime.