It’s not that I’m a food snob. That’s not the reason I walk the aisles of my local grocery store with a judgmental attitude that I prefer to call “discernment.” It’s because I’m wiser than I once was.
No matter what’s on my grocery list, I notice things with invisible labels:
- Empty Calories
- Not the Best Choice
- Better Option in the Next Bin
- You’ll Regret This One
- Not Worth the Miles It Will Take to Work This Off
- Instant Gratification/Long-Term Payment Plan
- Might as Well Mainline Trans-Fats
- Heart Attack Platter
- Eat at Your Own Risk
- Why Is This Shelved with Real Food?
I also notice gems—like veins of gold sparkling among the layers of tundra gravel. Superfoods! Be still my— I mean, be active, my heart!
- Olive Oil
Some resources list ten superfoods. Others 25. But of all the lists I’ve found online, First Place is the only one that acknowledges the super-est superfood. A nutritional powerhouse, this superfood enhances the impact of all the others. It boosts mood, provides a mega-dose of endorphins, raises oxytocin levels, which in turn helps the body function much more efficiently, and makes life generally more palatable.
The super-est superfood is friendship.
I’ve noticed a common thread lately when the subject of friendship works its way into a conversation. People consistently mention “forever friends,” those they may not have seen for years or even decades, but with whom they can pick up where they left off in a heartbeat.
One of my forever friends and I started our day-to-day friendship in second grade. At the end of fourth grade, my family moved to another state. She and I corresponded by letter occasionally and an annual Christmas card. She always signed hers, “Your forever, friend.” That’s all we had connecting us all those years.
Except for the most important element—Jesus.
Because our friendship from its earliest days had been fueled by our love for Jesus, we were joined heart-to-heart across the miles, despite no real personal connection. A few weeks ago, we set a date for a face-to-face meeting via video call. So much had happened in each other’s families that neither of us had known about, but the most important nutritional value of our friendship—our love for Jesus—had only grown stronger over the years.
That call was a super-est superfood feast for my soul. She “strengthened my hand in God,” as Jonathan did for his friend, David, in the Bible (I Samuel 23:16). A powerful “protein shake” for body and soul.
When you list the superfoods you’re incorporating into your meal plans, into your life, don’t forget to include the super-est superfood—friends. Whether they walk or run with you, hold you accountable to your goals, bake healthy granola bars with you on weekends, or strengthen your hand in God, there’s nothing like a friend to boost whatever you’re doing right to make it even more effective.
Here’s a shout-out to all the “forever friends” who make life sweeter…without the calories!
Cynthia Ruchti is an author and speaker, drawing on 33 years writing and producing a 15-minute radio broadcast. Her fiction and nonfiction have been recognized by a number of industry awards. Her tagline is, “I can’t unravel. I’m hemmed in Hope.” She and her husband live in the heart of Wisconsin, not far from their three children and six grandchildren.