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August 6, 2020

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Jane BirchMay 11, 2016

CONCERNED: Thank you for sharing your opinions. I agree that from your perspective your proposed title would be better, and I like it too. If you take a closer look at the science, I think you are likely to agree with me that oils are not wholesome foods, and then you could think about whether it might be better to not subject our body temples to foods that are damaging to them. I'm not suggesting this is a commandment, just wisdom. BEN: Thanks! You make my point exactly. "Wholesome" means "conducive to bodily health" or "healthy or sound." By this standard, the evidence clearly indicates (to many of us at least) that consuming oils are not at all wholesome for the average human. Many of the uses you cite are for very sparing amounts of oils or applied to the skin, which is a different matter. You make some good points about the quality and source of oils and the need to do research! PAULA: As mentioned in the article, cold-pressed oils are better, but they still have almost all of the downsides of processed oils. CHRISTOPHER: I believe when it comes to food, the "whole" form that the Lord created is the "wholesome" form. I have not noticed that humans make it more nutritious by stripping away healthy nutrients. And I agree with you that "The Lord certainly did not intend us to eat a Paleo diet!" GRACE: I have posted an article on coconut oil here:

ConcernedApril 24, 2016

Whether or not your claims about oils bear out, I think it is unwise to conflate what you take many paragraphs to bear out with a title that specifically says that the Word of Wisdom would discourage oils. One small paragraph at the end mentions the Word of Wisdom and our personal mandate towards prudence after many paragraphs that promote non-standard medical suggestion. Perhaps a better title would be: Whole food advocates believe that cutting oils will be beneficial to your health. I think the link to the word of wisdom is tenuous at best.

Ben DavisApril 23, 2016

I will just say that I'm very bothered by this article. The blanket statement that oils aren't good for you and that the Word of Wisdom doesn't support or condone their use is unfounded. The author miss uses a few words here. "Wholesome" means "conducive to bodily health" or "healthy or sound", not "whole form only". Thus, poison ivy is not a "wholesome" plant. "Prudence" means to be "wise in practical affairs". God ordained "good for the body" (aka wholesome) plants to be used by our wisdom. God has given us the herbs (plants) for our benefit and use. Even the fruits are for our use and what we can do with the fruits and plants are for our use (ex: essential oils). The oils that can come from these plants (olive oil, coconut oil, etc) can be extremely beneficial for our bodies. Let me site a couple of sources here: 1) Eat Fat, Lose Fat written by Dr. Mary Enig, PhD and Sally Fallon. Sally Fallon is the one who also wrote Nourishing Traditions and has studied many ancient cultures and discusses how they eat, which is essentially Word of Wisdom based. She is also one of the leading experts in food and health known around the world. This book specifically talks about Coconut Oil and its health benefits. 2) The movie Lorenzo's Oil. Lorenzo lived 22 years longer then doctors predicted because of his mom using specific oils to feed his body. The two main oils were Rapeseed and Olive Oil. I won't pretend to match wit for wit with the author. I know the research that I've done and how I feel about using oil. These two examples alone give me an understanding that oils aren't bad for you like it has been stated. I do agree that a whole food diet is the most beneficial for our bodies. That's how my wife and I eat and what we suggest others do. Just for example, what good is storing 500 pounds of wheat if you don't even know how to use it? Oils are good for us and are good for our bodies. Do we need them in large quantities and consuming everything we eat? Probably not. If they weren't for our use though and weren't good for us, why would the scriptures specifically mention Olive Oil and Butter? (I consider butter an oil.) The Israelites used oils in making their breads. Even the scriptures talk about essential oils (eg: frankincense and myrrh) which are derived from plants, just like cooking oils are derived from plants. Olive oil is also used in blessing the sick. (There is some significance to this that I would suggest you research.) Also, it was prophesied that the Savior would eat butter and honey to know to refuse the evil and choose the good. (Isaiah 7:15). This being said, not all oils are the same. We live in a society that likes cheap things and to make the most amount of profit they can. The quality and source and even the processing of the oil is the main key here. My suggestion is to do your research. Find out about oils AND see which ones your body is drawn to and learn how to use them in "prudence" and correctly.

PaulaApril 22, 2016

What about cold pressed oils?

Christopher TheissApril 22, 2016

This author confuses "wholesome" with "whole". It should be made clear what qualifications, research, et al. is the basis for such statements against processing "whole" foods to extract beneficial components. The Lord certainly did not intend us to eat a Paleo diet!

Jane BirchApril 21, 2016

HI MARIE: I agree with what you say, though I doubt that the Egyptians stored the wheat in oil. Even the best oil goes rancid within a few short years, but wheat can last for decades and even centuries in certain conditions. Wheat would go bad much more quickly if stored in oil. HI MIKE: I agree! I do hope you'll get a chance to actually read the article and see where I do this. HI GRACE: Like the other oils, the so-called health benefits of coconut oil don't make sense when placed in a larger context. I'll address this more directly in an upcoming article. Thanks for your interest!

GraceApril 21, 2016

I'm disappointed that coconut oil was not mentioned. I've read so many good things about is use, especially in regards to mental health. Why was it not included? Thanks. An interesting article.

MikeApril 19, 2016

So are you insinuating that eating cooking oils the Word of Wisdom? Although I agree 100% with what you say in this article, I think you should clarify with your reader base that the Word of Wisdom does not directly attack cooking oils rather than this is YOUR interpretation of the what the Word of Wisdom and what it means to you.

Rebecca SmithApril 19, 2016

I find a number of statements in Sister Birch's article here to be extreme and narrowly focused. She paints all oils with a disparaging brush, while also neglecting vast reservoirs of research supporting the healthy consumption of oils such as extra virgin cold pressed olive oil, or extra virgin coconut oil. Her description of the oil creation process as destructive of all that is beautiful in whole plants is likewise far beyond the mark. Certainly no one who follows nutritional research even casually would disagree with the clear health dangers of consuming hydrogenated fats and other commonplace vegetable oils that typify the Standard American Diet. But she makes no distinction between these and healthy oils. She did not touch upon the proven benefits of essential oils in this article, which while generally not made for oral consumption, are still absorbed into the bloodstream and powerfully cure many devastating illnesses. But one is lead to believe she might view the creation process of these healing oils in the same light. She cites secular health gurus to support her position while completely neglecting any reference to the plentiful biblical support for widespread use of oils in a healthy and godly life. After all, 2/3 gifts offered by the three kings to a young Jesus were oils. I find much of what Sister Birch recommends toward the fuller obedience to the Word of Wisdom to be sound, and worth a closer look. Unfortunately this installment falls far short for this mom of special needs kids who are helped greatly by a whole foods, plant-based diet.

KellyApril 19, 2016

I'm sorry, but I don't agree with any of this. You have not quoted anything authoritative from a doctrinal standpoint. You've quoted medical doctors with a specific view that I find is inconsistent with scriptural concepts. From the New Testsment institute manual... (25-3) Matthew 26:36. “Then Cometh Jesus … unto a Place Called Gethsemane” “Gethsemane.—The name means ‘oil-press’ and probably has reference to a mill maintained at the place for the extraction of oil from the olives there cultivated. John refers to the spot as a garden, from which designation we may regard it as an enclosed space of private ownership. That it was a place frequented by Jesus when He sought retirement for prayer, or opportunity for confidential converse with the disciples, is indicated by the same writer (John 18:1, 2).” (Talmage, Jesus the Christ, p. 620.) (The Life and Teachings of Jesus and His Apostles, Section 5: The Week of the Atoning Sacrifice to the Resurrection, Chapter 25: “Not My Will, but Thine, Be Done”) Clearly the inception of pressing oil from fruit is a key symbolism in the very atonement Christ provided for all of us. The lord expressed no animosity or attitude towards the concept. The word Gethsemane means oil press. The widow and Elijah story of the meal and oil also shows the lord provding oil and meal to the widow for her faithfulness in serving Elijah... 1 kings 17:12 And she said, As the Lord thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die. 13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. 14 For thus saith the Lord God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the Lord sendeth rain upon the earth. 15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. 16 And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord, which he spake by Elijah. (Old Testament, 1 Kings, 1 Kings 17)

Marie fletcherApril 19, 2016

For thousands of years,olive oil was not processed nor heated. It is only our. Modern impatient manufacturing that now uses heat, mixtures of other oils together and inferior olives to make poor olive oils. Notice that it is a fruit-from a tree and has many spiritual meanings. Also, transporting olive oil from the Mediteranean to the USA is a problem--the closer the olives are to the consumers The better the quality. California is producing olive oil now under California brand in Walmart. In one of our missions to Spain we met a member who stored his wheat in pottery by pouring the good olive oil into the grain. He said that was the way the Israelites or Egyptians under Joseph kept and stored their. Grain.



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