Digging your Grave with Your Spoon!

overweight (7)

Digging your Grave with Your Spoon!

 Richard Hollerman

People often look at overweight men and women and simply condemn them for appearing the way they do, or denounce them for spending too much money at the fast food establishments. This is an oversimplification that needs to be corrected. There may be unknown factors that reveal causes for obesity that we simply cannot fathom.

Yes, there may be a lack of self-control. There is the failure to choose low-fat and low-caloric foods wisely. There is the economic issue of poor food choices being less expensive (but sometimes more expensive). There is also the influence of one’s parents and immediate family. Sometimes one’s ethnic background pays a role in one’s weight. And, although there is a lot of information (in the media) about making good food choices, some people are simply ignorant of basic nutrition. So there are a lot of reasons why a given person may be overweight and obese.

Let’s discuss this somewhat more.  Some doctors and health professionals have given little thought to the issues of good nutrition and adequate exercise since they have probably only received one classroom course in the field of nutrition. And not all physicians made good health choices themselves. When I was young, our family used the services of a primary care doctor in the small town where we lived.  This doctor and his brother (both were in the same profession and the same office) were both smokers!  Some time ago (about ten or twelve years ago), I had a doctor who was very friendly and knowledgeable, but he was also extremely obese! We can see that patients who are in situations like this will probably be less than inclined to lose weight themselves and practice good health rules.

Let’s ask this question: “What about the negative consequences of being overweight?” There is an extreme danger and this must be faced squarely if we would be honest with God and do what we should do. In a recent article, Kate Kelland makes these charges about being overweight:


Some half a million cases of cancer a year are due to people being overweight or obese, and the problem is particularly acute in North America, the World Health Organization’s cancer research agency said on Wednesday.

In a study published in the journal The Lancet Oncology, the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said high body mass index (BMI) has now become a major cancer risk factor, responsible for some 3.6 percent, or 481,000, of new cancer cases in 2012.

(msn.com/en-us/health/medical/fat-to-blame-for-half-a-million-cancers-a-year-who-agency-says /ar-BBfQRo4?ocid=iehp http://www.msn.com/en-us/health/medical/ fat-to-blame-for-half-a-million-cancers-a-year-who-agency-says/ar-BBfQRo4?ocid=iehp)

Thus, in North America alone, being overweight accounts for half a million cases of cancer! This should be enough to shake our composure and make us see the danger of weighing too much for our age and our physical frame. The article continues:

“The number of cancers linked to obesity and overweight is expected to rise globally along with economic development,” said Christopher Wild, IARC’s director. (Ibid)

The article emphasizes the connection between being overweight and developing cancer:

The IARC study found that, for now, North America has by far the worst cancer problem linked to weight, with some 111,000 obesity-related cancers diagnosed in 2012, accounting for 23 percent of global cancer cases linked to high BMI. In Europe, obesity is to blame for around 6.5 percent of all new cancers a year, or around 65,000 cases.

The writer went on to say that in Africa cancer from being overweight is extremely low (only 1.5 percent of cancer).  Yet, in our economically developed nations, overweight definitely is related to developing cancer. All of this may seem like cold statistics to us, but it represents family members, fellow-workers, neighbors, and others who die a premature death because of their uncontrolled obesity and overweight.

The article concludes with these final remarks:

Melina Arnold, who co-led the IARC study, noted that women are disproportionately affected by obesity-related cancers. For postmenopausal breast cancer, for example – the most common women’s cancer worldwide – the findings suggest that 10 percent of cases could be prevented by not being overweight. (Editing by Kevin Liffey)

We have often been told that if we are overweight, we probably will have high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and other serious health conditions. But we may fail to take into consideration our problem with overweight. Being “fat” (to use an older term) is more than a consideration of our physical appearance.  It is directly related to the dreaded disease of cancer!

These new findings should sink into our heart and mind.  Paul the apostle says that “no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it” (Ephesians 5:29). If we do something like overeat or choose the high-fat and high-caloric foods, or fail to do enough physical activity, isn’t it true that we “hate” our flesh or physical body?  If we fail to “nourish” and “cherish” our body and instead do many different things that would harm our body, aren’t we doing something unnatural, something that makes no sense, something that may send us to the grave?

The Christian should do all he (or she) can to live a healthy life for the glory of God and the cause of Christ (cf. Romans 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 10:31). This new finding about the connection between being overweight and developing cancer gives additional reasons for treating our body with care, with self-control, and with a purpose of living for Christ.


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