March 2016 - Archives

Metabolic Syndrome by Risë Rafferty

Metabolic Syndrome

March 30, 2016 | Risë Rafferty, RDN

Nearly 35% of adults in America and 50% of those 60 years of age or older are estimated to have metabolic syndrome, also called syndrome X and insulin resistance syndrome. These are staggering statistics. Potentially 3 of 10 adults in America are living with a syndrome that they may not even realize they have.

Metabolic syndrome is not a disease itself. Rather it is a cluster of several risk factors that have been found to be a major contributor to the development of cardiovascular disease, stroke, kidney disease, and type 2 diabetes. These risk factors include:

abdominal obesity high fasting blood sugar levels elevated triglycerides low HDL cholesterol elevated blood pressure

Having three or more of these risk factors indicates metabolic syndrome.

Apparently not all fat is alike. The fat that packs itself around the abdomen poses the greatest danger. Abdominal obesity is defined by a waist circumference measurement of  > 40 inches in men, > 35 inches in women.

A fasting blood sugar level > 110 is another early …
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Risë Rafferty, RDN

Health Educator
Light Bearers

Twelve by David Asscherick


March 28, 2016 | David Asscherick

On February 8, ARISE Australia’s fourth three-month session began enthusiastically here in Kingscliff, Australia with students from all around the world. Norway, Germany, Finland, the United States, Canada, and South Africa, in addition to Australia of course, are all represented!

I’ve been doing this for fifteen years now, ever since Pastor Nathan Renner and I co-founded ARISE in partnership with the Michigan Conference. We were super enthusiastic for our first-ever class, and that enthusiasm for training, discipleship, and teaching remains absolutely undiminished.

One of the quotations that really stoked our fire in those early days was this: “With such an army of workers as our youth, rightly trained, might furnish, how soon the message of a crucified, risen, and soon-coming Savior might be carried to the whole world! How soon might the end come—the end of suffering and sorrow and sin!” (Education, p. 271).

Let’s be honest, the size of the evangelistic enterprise before us can be absolutely overwhelming.

Here at Light Bearers, our passion for training and discipleship grows …
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David Asscherick

Light Bearers

Too Dark for Me

Too Dark for Me

March 25, 2016 | Elise Harboldt

“Do you cut yourself?” I ask. “No,” she whispers. “I burn myself.” She pulls up her sleeves to show me dark red lines all the way up her arms. “I use a curling iron.” 

“I took the whole bottle of pills,” he says. “My wife found me passed out and called 911.”

“I want out,” she says. “I can’t promise you I won’t follow through. Life is too dark for me.” 

I work in a mental health practice, and hear these stories over and over. People who often look normal on the outside give a glimpse into their painful inner worlds. The darkness is deep and the stories sad: abuse, trauma, anxiety, depression, addiction, substance abuse, brokenness, and pain.

I’d like to think these stories are anomalies, but they aren’t. Every 16 minutes someone in the United States commits suicide. It’s the tenth leading cause of death in Americans over age 10. At least one in four American adults suffers from a diagnosable mental illness such as depression or anxiety …
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Elise Harboldt

Beautiful Minds Medical

Abel Still Speaks by Jeffrey Rosario

Abel Still Speaks

March 4, 2016 | Jeffrey Rosario

Immediately after the fall of humanity recorded in Genesis 3, the story moves to the next generation of the human race. It’s the story of Cain and Abel. Yet in this chapter, there is no mention of a deceptive serpent. Humans have been so infected with the poison of sin that they are now perfectly capable of deceiving themselves. Deception now resides in the heart.

The conflict between Cain and Abel is the first manifestation of the struggle foretold in Genesis 3:15. These brothers embody the controversy between good and evil that will take up the biblical story till the end. In Genesis 4, the focus lies in how humans choose to relate to God. But this is not a story about believers and unbelievers. Both Abel and Cain acknowledge that God merits their worship; both bring an offering and both approach the altar. Here we have two professed worshipers––very different worshipers.

The text tells us that “Abel brought of the firstborn of his flock” (Genesis 4:4). He offered to …
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Jeffrey Rosario

Light Bearers

Precious Seed by Risë Rafferty

Precious Seed

March 3, 2016 | Risë Rafferty, RDN

One of my favorite flowers possesses delicate blue petals that drop off before evening, only to open a new bouquet every morning. The flower is delicate, yet tenacious, resilient, and beautiful. Science has found that of even greater significance in this plant are its seeds, which have powerful therapeutic properties. Studies conducted with animals and humans have revealed the impact these seeds can have on multiple aspects of health, even on cardiovascular disease, the number one cause of death.

The most commonly measured blood markers indicating risk of heart attack and stroke are blood lipids. These include total cholesterol, LDL and HDL cholesterol, and triglycerides, essentially the fatty content of the blood. Blood is drawn and sent to the lab where clinicians assess the levels. Elevated total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides with corresponding low HDL cholesterol is indicative of risk. LDL is the form of cholesterol that is denser and damaging and therefore, referred to as lousy.

A common group of pharmaceuticals that is prescribed when cholesterol levels are …
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Risë Rafferty, RDN

Health Educator
Light Bearers