Veteran’s Day

My grandfathers served in World War I and II. I don’t know much about Papa’s time served during WWI. I’m not sure if he ever talked about it very much or maybe I was too young to pay much attention. But I do know a bit about my Grandpa Manka.

Japan Iwo Jima MarineAt 17 1/2 years old, my Grandpa Manka enlisted in the Marine Corp on April 12, 1944, and earned the Purple Heart during duty at Iwo Jima. He was discharged Sept. 12, 1945.

It was a year and a half that changed his life forever. He went there thinking that he was going to be one of the Marine’s who took Japan but found himself staying  there wounded with physical and mental injuries from which he would never fully recover.

He often said that the price that he had paid for our country wasn’t too great. He would have willing given his life to protect this country and our freedom.

He felt that each and every man has a responsibility to serve our country in times of need.

More than anyone in my life, he taught me that you should always be willing to fight for what you love.

Veteran’s Day shouldn’t be about time off from work or shopping. For me, it’s a day that causes me to remember a great man whom I was honored to call Grandpa.

I encourage you to take a moment to remember those who have served. And, if they happen to be alive, take a little bit of time to listen to the stories they are willing to share and say thank you.




From 200-175 BCE, Jewish scribe Shimon ben Yeshua ben Eliezer ben Sira of Jerusalem spent about 25 years writing a book of wisdom. This is what he has to say about my favorite topic…


It is better to be poor, but strong and healthy, than to be rich, but in poor health. A sound, healthy body and a cheerful attitude are more valuable than gold and jewels. Nothing can make you richer or give you greater happiness than those two things.   

Clearly, Sirach values health and well-being far more than riches. But what about you? How important is it to you to be healthy? Is it important enough that you are willing to make changes in your diet and lifestyle to develop good health? Do you value good health more than you value momentary pleasure? Is your health more valuable to you than your possessions?

When we are asked questions like this, we respond automatically with the answer that we know we should give. Of course! I value my health.

But let me ask that question another way?

Do you value your health more than your car?

Of course!

Let’s test that answer.  Go out and pour ten gallons of coke into your gas tank. What? You wouldn’t do that because it would tear up your car? Not only would it tear up your car but it would cost a small fortune to fix it.  So you won’t do that, will you?

But you know that you are feeding your body all kinds of things that can eventually make you really sick. And you keep eating and/or drinking those foods  over and over and over again with little to no thought of what it’s doing to you or what it’s going to cost to get well.

So let me ask you again.

Do you value good health?



Health reasons…..

I’m going to tell you a secret that I learned quite by accident. But first the story about how I discovered this secret…..

friedwontonA few weeks ago I met my brother and his family in Jacksonville for dinner. He  ordered fried wontons as an appetizer. Being the nice man that he is, he passed the plate around to make sure that everyone got one or two.   He asked why wouldn’t I eat them when I said no thank you. I told him told him that I couldn’t have them for…..

health reasons

He shrugged and his shoulders and said okay.

In the past when I was asked this question, I’d say things like I want to lose weight or that I was watching what I ate. And almost always they’d say that eating it just this one wouldn’t hurt anything. And, more often than not, I’d eat whatever they were offering just to be nice and avoid conflict.

If he had asked for an explanation, I would have explained that because  my thyroid requires that I avoid gluten.

But  like most people, he didn’t ask.

Now you may be thinking that you are different from me and  don’t have any health reasons to turn down anything that is being offered. But you do! Here, I’ll give you a short list of health reasons…..

  • You want to be healthy.
  • You don’t want to get diabetes or heart disease like others in your family.
  • You need to lose those pounds to take the pressure off of your back or knees.
  • You feel better when you avoid those foods.

No one ever said that mine and your list of health reasons has to come from a doctor’s office…..




There are things that I believed in the past that I nopfp_tab_12oz longer believe are true. Time and experience has taught me differently.

For example, in high school I used to drink Tab. This  had to be the most gosh awful drink ever made by Coke. I was convinced that drinking Tab  would make me skinny. And maybe, just maybe, I’d be accepted by the cool kids who were drinking it too.

efgt1Like I said. Time and experience teaches us differently.

In Eat Fat, Get Thin, Dr. Hyman confess that when he  began his medical practice 30 years ago he believed that we should eat the diet illustrated on the  Food Pyramid.

But his time as a physician and experience with thousands of patients has taught him differently…..

Dr. Hyman researches hundreds of studies to prove to us  that the Standard American Diet is not only making us fat but it’s killing us along the way.

Along with many other experts, Dr. Hyman  recommends that we eat whole foods such as vegetables, fruits, proteins, and fats.

Or as I like to think of it – we eat the foods that God created for us in the first place.

Because of my thyroid issues, I had already made most of the changes he suggests in this book to my diet and I’ve seen great results. Since I’ve added more of the healthy fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, butter, and avocados to my grain and gluten free diet, I find that I’m not craving the foods that I once wanted so badly. What’s even better is that I don’t feel as if I’m being denied those foods when I see others eating them.

Plus, I’m losing about a half of a pound a week.


If you need to be scientifically convinced by a doctor that the Standard American Diet that is  filled with high carbs such as bread, pastries, crackers, cookies, and pastas along with all the  processed food that you’ve been eating and drinking  is making you gain weight, get sick, and feel bad about yourself then you should definitely read this book.

But if you already know what to do, then why not just do it?!?