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Christianity Today, September 6, 1999
Embrace Vegetarian Diet
If you ask George Malkmus, a North Carolina minister, why
Christians become ill, he will tell you they have neglected
eating an apple a day.
Malkmus, whose book Why Christians Get Sick (Destiny
Image) has sold more than 200,000 copies, is also the creator
of the Hallelujah Diet, a low-fat vegetarian plan based on
Genesis 1:29: "I give you all plants that bear seed everywhere
on earth…they shall be yours for food."
More than a century after Seventh-day Adventists linked
diet and doctrine and 30 years after the hippie generation
discovered organic foods, evangelical Christians are flocking
toward the Hallelujah Diet as a healthier way of life.
Malkmus was a Baptist pastor in New York when he developed
colon cancer in 1976. Having watched his mother die of colon
cancer after repeated rounds of chemotherapy, Malkmus resigned
from his church and sought the advice of Texan health
evangelist Lester Roloff.
After a year of following Roloff's diet advice, including
drinking two quarts of fresh carrot juice each day, Malkmus
asserts that his tumor disappeared—along with his allergies,
hemorrhoids, and dandruff.
Doctors say the Hallelujah Diet, like other low-fat,
high-fiber programs, may be good preventive medicine, but that
it does not kill cancer cells.
Malkmus says not all Christians have been receptive to his
newfound recipe for health. That may be due to Malkmus's other
radical convictions, such as the idea that all pharmaceutical
drugs—and vitamins—are toxic and his claim that childhood
vaccinations are unsafe.
Still, Malkmus's diet has joined the ranks of Christian
health plans selling off the shelves. Hallelujah Acres em
ploys 25 people to staff phones and ship his books, tapes,
videos, and jars of barley green around the world.
Recent Christian diets have tapped an untouched health
industry niche with the success of Gwen Shamblin's Weigh Down
books, and the adoption in churches nationwide of a plan
Religion News Service.
Copyright © 1999 by the author or Christianity Today
International/Christianity Today magazine.
September 6, 1999 Vol. 43, No. 10, Page 21
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