In 2008, a study referenced by the CDC stated “by 2030, 86.3% adults will be overweight or obese; and 51.1%, obese.” As the health crisis in America continues to look grim, I believe there is hope. I believe the hope rests in our students.

Though the trajectory of our nation’s health seems grim, health education in schools seems to be less important than other subjects. Health and physical education is often the last to be staffed, the shortest schedule block of the school day, and the program with the lowest budget. Many times it is treated as a “less than” subject, merely a glorified recess. If our culture continues to underestimate the value of quality health education, the next generation will soon reflect the aforementioned statistic, or worse, exceed it.

Educators don’t mean to treat health as less important. But oftentimes there is so much on their plate and they are just trying to keep their heads above water. I get it! But a little intentionality goes a LONG way. Students need more from PE than just running around and playing games. They need to be taught the simple principles of how to think about and approach health so they can build strong habits while they are young. They need to form a Biblical worldview for their health.

I will be writing an article next month that will go into depth on my simple checklist for a quality health education program. But until then I want to give you 3 principles that we at FORM Curriculum teach to students to help them learn about God’s design for their health.

Stewardship – Matthew 25:14-30

This scripture passage teaches about the parable of the talents. The lesson here is that we are stewards of what God has entrusted to us. Yes, this passage uses talents (money) to teach the concept, but this principle also applies to the body that God has given us to do all He has called us to do. We are called to steward our body so we can better serve God and others.

Standing Out – Daniel 1

In this passage, Daniel and his friends are given favor by God and exalted to a place in the king’s palace. They have all the “King’s Delicacies” available to them, which contain many foods that are not healthy to be eaten constantly (fatty meat and alcohol). Daniel requests that he and his friends do not partake in those delicacies, but instead eat vegetables and water for 10 days. His request is granted and at the end of the 10 days, he and his friends significantly stand out from the rest of the king’s men. Even 10 times better! We are called to stand out in our culture and stewarding our body is just one way to do that.

Transformation – 2 Corinthians 3:18

Our desire should be to look more and more like Jesus in every area of our life. Jesus did an excellent job of taking care of His body, mind, and emotions so that He was available and able to do all the Father had for Him to do. We should endeavor to do the same.

I hope these 3 principles are helpful as you ponder how your health education program can be excellent in every season!

You can also get a free copy of our health devotional guide on our website HERE! It has 32 principles just like this one that you can implement directly into your program! Hope it helps!

Wang Y;Beydoun MA;Liang L;Caballero B;Kumanyika SK; (2008). Will all Americans become overweight or obese? estimating the progression and cost of the US obesity epidemic. Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.).

Photo by Philip White on Unsplash

Ashton Tate is the founder of Glory to Glory Fitness in Franklin, TN, and the creator of The F.O.R.M. Curriculum. After walking through a life-changing health transformation he has dedicated his life to helping others live a healthy lifestyle to better serve God and others. At Glory to Glory Fitness their mission is to get quality health education to every student in America by equipping educators with the resources and systems they need to make a difference in students’ lives. His resources currently impact thousands of students in schools all over the United States.