The Dangers of Obesity!


The Dangers of Obesity!

The Dangers of Obesity

Richard Hollerman

Probably most of the readers of this piece will be professing Christians.  Further, most of you come from a perspective in which the use of tobacco is looked on with a lot of negative thoughts and feelings. If you are like me, you wouldn’t hesitate to say that smoking (as well as the use of smokeless tobacco) is sinful and displeasing to God.

Why would we say this?  I’ve written a couple articles/booklets on the use of tobacco, and in these I point out various reasons why smoking involves sin and disobedience to the will of God. For instance, (1) The use of tobacco harms the body (1 Corinthians 6:19-20); (2) it is a poor example to one’s children (Ephesians 6:4), (3) it harms the whole family through second-hand smoke (Romans 13:10); (4) it wastes money or is a violation of good stewardship principles (1 Corinthians 4:2); (5) it is a poor example to all people (1 Timothy 4:12; Titus 2:7); (6) we know that Jesus would not use tobacco and we are to walk in His steps (1 Peter 2:21; 1 John 2:1-6). These are only a few of several dozen reasons why we would abstain from smoking and the use of smokeless tobacco.

In light of this, has it ever occurred to you that some of the same reasons may be offered to the subject of diet?  Think of the foregoing reasons and apply them to what you and I eat—and you’ll see the close connection.  Furthermore, since diet is so inextricably connected to being overweight, we can apply those points to the issue of our weight. By the way, we are not just referring here to the quantity of what we eat but also the content of what we eat. The reason why hundreds of millions of people in this world are slim and in good health are because of the nature of the food they consume.

We know that there are certain factors involved with someone being overweight, such as genetics and childhood learning experiences. Other factors also are involved and this might make it difficult for a given person to lose weight. But this must account for a very small percentage of persons who are overweight–or obese.  In rough numbers, researchers say that some 70% of Americans are overweight, with perhaps 30% being considered “obese” (greatly overweight). We need not give precise percentages here but all of us know that this is a huge problem in this country.  (Interestingly, recently Mexico became the nation with the highest rate of obesity in the world.)


The Dangers of Obesity!

Let’s limit this discussion by just looking at some of the many health consequences related to being overweight. We are taking this from our article in the website, Why I Don’t Eat Junk Foods:

High blood pressure, which may then also lead to:


Ear noise & buzzing


Shortness of breath

Excessive sweating


Vision changes

Nose bleeds

Blood in urine

Kidney damage / failure


Elevated serum cholesterol levels

Elevated LDL (“bad” cholesterol) levels

Decreased HDL (“good” cholesterol) levels

Elevated triglyceride levels

Elevated blood glucose

Decreased blood oxygen

Decreased testosterone levels

Heart disease and Strokes, potentially leading on to:

Heart attack

Congestive heart failure

Sudden cardiac death



Chest pain

Brain hemorrhage


Cancers including (but not limited to):

          Endometrial cancer

          Colon cancer

          Gall bladder cancer

          Prostate cancer

Kidney cancer

Esophageal cancer

Uterine cancer

Breast cancer

Ovarian cancer

Pancreatic cancer




Obstructive sleep apnea



Erectile dysfunction



Loss of libido

Irregular menstrual cycles

Gestational diabetes

Type Two Diabetes, potentially resulting in:

Slow healing of cuts & wounds

Abnormally frequent urination

Increased thirst

Nerve damage

Blurred vision

Heart Disease

Kidney Disease



Erectile dysfunction


Pregnancy and birth complications

Increased need for Ceasarean sections

Birth defects for the infant such as:

Spina Bifida

Low blood sugar

Brain damage


Neural tube defects


Heart defects


Gall bladder disease, potentially leading on to:

Gall stones

Abdominal pain

Back pain


Increased surgical risks


Fatty liver disease, potentially leading on to:

Cirrhosis of the liver

Severe liver damage / failure

Insulin resistance syndrome

Reduced immune function

Swollen joints / fluid retention

Muscular aches and pains, particularly:




Biomechanical injuries & faults, including:

Sunken arches / flat foot

Heel spurs

Plantar fasciitis

Shin soreness

Creaking knees

Achilles tendonitis

Calcific tendonopathy

Sprained ankles

Bone chips


Social and career ostracism & discrimination which may result in loneliness, poverty, sexual frustration

Periodontal disease

Restless Legs Syndrome

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Does any of this concern you?  If you are overweight to any degree, does it alarm you that you surely have developed or are in the process of developing one or more of these conditions? When we learn that one-pack-a-day smokers will shorten their life by about seven years, we respond with agreement and much concern. But when we learn that being overweight is another serious health matter, too many of us just pass it by with an excuse.

If you are a secularist or an agnostic, you may pass all of this by without too much concern since it shortens your life and decreases your health for only a few short years. After that you just die (so you mistakenly assume). But if you are a professing Christian, you know that in the great Judgment by the Lord, each one will be “recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad” (2 Corinthians 5:10; Ecclesiastes 12:14).

Because of this, we urge you to begin doing all you can to lose those excess pounds. We don’t have the space at this point to discuss how you can do this, but there are several “keys” such as consuming foods with fewer calories, eating smaller and fewer meals, exercising, drinking more water, and maintaining a general overall health. It is also helpful to obtain help from a sympathetic and knowledgeable physician.  Our website, under Links, offers many websites that will help you to maintain a good weight.

May God bless you as you determine to keep your body fit for His service and be a good steward of what He has given to you. “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Colossians 3:17). “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).

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