Counsels on dietary norms and wellbeing of adherents: a case of Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Kericho District, Kenya
This study aimed at answering what could be enabling the se'v~nth Day Adventists 111 Kericho District enjoy better well-being thus longevity than non-Seventh Day Adventists. T~,e study endeavored to show the relationship between Seventh Day Adventists' teachings. beliefs and practices to well-being. The study was also interested in finding out other factors that could be enhancing health amongst the Seventh Day Adventist. The extent of incorporation of the Seventh Day Adventists' teaching, beliefs and practices in the lives of the adherents was also analyzed. Since Adventists are known for the so called siecio! diet/health reform, tracing the historical development of the health reform amongs: Adventists was also investigated. The study employed case study research design since it aimed at analyzing Seventh Day A.dventists teachings, beliefs and practices in detail, context and in totality. The study else used the particular case of Seventh Day Adventist Churches in Kericho District. The study used questionnaires to collect primary data from key informants, ordinary members of the Churches and non-Seventh Day Adventists who neighbour the Church. In-depth interviews and focus group discussion were applied in the study too. In reporting the nndings of the study, descriptive approach was utilized. lhe study was based on the assumptions that the various components parts of a social group such as: teaching, beliefs and practices int1uence the total behavior of a particular social group Lor instance social, economic, and political and even lifestyle. The general systems theory associated with Buckeley (1967) was applied in the study, since the stud) aimed at explicating the people's representation of their teachings, beliefs and oractices in relation to health and general well-being. The study used non-probahility convenience sampling technique to identify the sample representing members of the Churches. nonprobabil.ity purposive sample for the key informants; leaders and random sampling for the n()11-Adventist informants, it was found that the Seventh Day Adventist teachings advice on dietary norms. It was also noted that to a very greater extend, the Seventh Day Adventist teachings on wellbeing have been incorporated into the lives of adherents. It was noted that the Kipsigis traditional culture had laid foundation which was later on continued by the Seventh Day Adventists counsels on healthful living; hence explaining the greater percentages of incorporation of the teachings in the lives of adherents.