Emmy award-winning studio host and network broadcaster James (J.B.) Brown is used to dealing with a lot of numbers in his storied career as a sportscaster. But just two years ago, he became concerned about his own personal numbers. At 295 pounds, his blood pressure was high, he was pre-diabetic, and he suffered from sleep apnea. June is National Men’s Health Month and according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 73% of adult men are overweight or obese. The CDC also reports that men die at higher rates than women from 9 of the 10 top causes of death, partially because women are 100% more likely than men to visit the doctor for annual exams and preventative care.
“My dad died at 46 of stomach cancer,” says Brown, who is now 67 years old. “I was aware that by being overweight, I was asking for trouble. I had undertaken a number of weight loss efforts in the past, but when I found a program that was centered on Biblical principles I knew that was for me.”
Brown credits the NutriMost program for helping him lose over 30% of his body weight since he began in October of 2016. Brown, who is also an ordained minister, said his weight-loss program was developed by a Christian doctor, and that the programs, objectives, and steps are Biblically-rooted.
“There’s a 40-day weight reduction period — the number of transformation,” he explained. “There’s a three-day recovery period — new birth or resurrection. And then there’s the maintenance phase. So it’s gone really well, but as I looked at their affirmations — and they’re good affirmations — I made mine all about the Lord. I want to be a strong vessel for His use: energetic, enthusiastic, healthy. So it’s kind of the same principle as in Matthew 6:33, which says ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these other things will be added.’ If I seek to be a strong, healthy, energetic vessel for Him, everything else — my family, my employer, my wife, my grand kids — they’ll all be beneficiaries.”
In the football off-season, Brown spends his time traveling and speaking at conferences and churches across the country. Brown, along with Coach Tony Dungy, speaks at events together, and Brown does a lot of work with at-risk kids, a cause for which he expresses a particular passion.
“My wife and I served as youth ministers in our church many years ago. In my experience, one of the biggest concerns with children and young adults today is the absence of love in their lives. I watch kids even in 4th and 5th grades talk to each other in such disrespectful and demeaning ways. Even their body language oftentimes suggests that they are apathetic, and their countenances reflect despondency. When you have kids at these young ages that are already so hardened toward other people, it just breaks my heart. I want to help these young kids learn to speak kindly toward one another and teach them respect, but we must get to the root of the problem. This is an issue that, ultimately, affects everyone in our society, and it must be addressed.”
And when the football season kicks off, Brown knows his ministry doesn’t stop.
“My job is to model what I believe, whether it’s in the secular field or doing ministry,” says Brown. “I try to do my job with excellence so that there’s no complaining, no issues at all about me, not only meeting the mark but exceeding the mark, treating people like Christ treats us, with grace and love. My belief in Jesus Christ is the foundation of my life, and the Word of God undergirds everything I do.”