What Does the Bible Say About Foods to Eat?


As Christians, we are called to honor God with our bodies, which includes taking care of our health. While many Christians focus on spiritual health and growth, physical health is just as important, and our diets play a significant role in our overall well-being. The foods we eat can have a profound impact on our physical health and our ability to serve God.

Throughout the Bible, we find guidance and instruction on the foods we should eat. In the Old Testament, God gave specific dietary laws to the Israelites, and in the New Testament, Jesus and the apostles taught on the importance of wise food choices. However, as Christians, it can be challenging to navigate the many different dietary opinions and fads prevalent in our society today.

In this blog post, we will explore what the Bible says about the foods we should eat. We will examine Old Testament dietary laws, New Testament perspectives, and the health benefits of certain foods. We will also provide practical applications for Christians to make wise choices when it comes to their diets, so they can honor God with their bodies and serve Him to the best of their ability.

food in the Bible

Old Testament Dietary Laws

In the Old Testament, God gave specific dietary laws to the Israelites. These laws were intended to set them apart from the other nations and to teach them about holiness and obedience. The laws included restrictions on the types of animals that could be eaten, as well as guidelines for preparing and handling food.

One of the most well-known dietary laws is the prohibition on eating pork. Leviticus 11:7-8 states, “And the swine, though it divides the hoof, having cloven hooves, yet does not chew the cud, is unclean to you. Their flesh you shall not eat, and their carcasses you shall not touch. They are unclean to you.” This law was intended to protect the Israelites from diseases that could be transmitted through the consumption of pork.

Other prohibited animals included shellfish, such as shrimp and lobster, and certain birds, such as eagles and owls. Additionally, the Israelites were instructed to avoid eating animals that had died of natural causes or had been killed by other animals.

While these dietary laws were specific to the Israelites, they provide insight into God’s concern for his people’s health and well-being.

New Testament Perspective

In the New Testament, Jesus declared all foods clean, as recorded in Mark 7:19: “because it does not enter his heart but his stomach, and is eliminated, thus purifying all foods?” This declaration was revolutionary at the time, as it challenged the long-held beliefs of the Jewish people. Jesus was teaching that it is not what we eat that defiles us, but what comes from within our hearts.

Paul also addressed the issue of food in his letters to the Corinthians and the Romans. In 1 Corinthians 8, he discussed the issue of eating meat sacrificed to idols. He emphasized that idols are not real and that eating such meat was permissible, but cautioned against causing a weaker brother to stumble.

Romans 14:2-3 also addresses the issue of food: “One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him.”

From these passages, we can see that while the dietary laws of the Old Testament no longer apply, Christians should still exercise wisdom and discernment when it comes to their diets. We should be mindful of the impact our food choices have on our health and well-being, as well as on our witness to others.

Health Benefits of Certain Foods

While the Bible does not prescribe a specific diet plan, it does provide guidance on the types of foods that are beneficial for our health. For example, many fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can help protect our bodies from disease.

One of the most well-known examples is the apple, which has been called “the fruit of the gods” due to its health benefits. Apples are high in fiber and antioxidants, which can help reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and other chronic diseases.

Fish is another food that is often praised for its health benefits. Fish is an excellent source of lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce inflammation in the body and lower the risk of heart disease. Some types of fish, such as salmon and mackerel, are particularly high in omega-3s.

Nuts and seeds are also nutritious foods that can provide a range of health benefits. They are high in healthy fats, protein, fiber, and vitamins and minerals. Studies have shown that eating nuts and seeds can help lower cholesterol levels, reduce inflammation, and decrease the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Practical Applications

So, what does all of this mean for our daily lives? As Christians, we should strive to honor God with our bodies by making wise choices when it comes to food. Here are some practical applications:

  1. Eat a variety of foods: The Bible does not give a specific diet plan, but it does emphasize the importance of balance and moderation. We should strive to eat a variety of whole, nutrient-dense foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.
  2. Avoid processed foods: Many modern foods are heavily processed and loaded with sugar, salt, and unhealthy fats. These foods can contribute to chronic health problems such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. We should aim to eat foods that are as close to their natural state as possible, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins.
  3. Practice self-control: The Bible teaches us to exercise self-control in all areas of our lives, including our diets. We should not allow our desire for unhealthy foods to control our actions, but instead, strive to make wise choices that honor God.
  4. Be mindful of others: As we saw in Paul’s letters, we should also be mindful of the impact our food choices have on others. We should be considerate of those who may have dietary restrictions or preferences, and avoid causing them to stumble.
  5. Seek God’s guidance: Ultimately, our food choices should be guided by our relationship with God. We should seek his wisdom and guidance as we make decisions about what to eat and how to care for our bodies.


In conclusion, the Bible does not provide a specific diet plan, but it does emphasize the importance of making wise choices when it comes to food. While the dietary laws of the Old Testament no longer apply, Christians should still strive to honor God with their bodies by making choices that promote health and well-being.

By following these principles, we can improve our physical health, better serve God, and be a positive witness to those around us. As we seek to honor God with our bodies, let us remember the words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:31: “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all to the glory of God.”

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