“Eat and Drink and Be Not Extravagant”

Scientific proof is accumulating to prove that obesity and weight gain have a direct negative impact on health, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, higher rates of diabetes, heart disease, fatty liver, arthritis, gallstones, and even increased rates of getting some sorts of cancer.


Studies indicate that the rates of developing high blood pressure in obese adults are 3 times higher than their counterparts with normal weight, and the dangers of high blood pressure are known to everyone: On the long run, it causes heart disease, arteriosclerosis, heart attacks, heart failure, strokes and kidney failure and much more.


It was also discovered that weight gain leads to higher blood cholesterol rates, and the dangers of high cholesterol are known to most people; studies indicate that it contributes to arteriosclerosis, heart attacks and other cardiovascular conditions.


It was also found out that weight gain leads to higher possibilities to develop diabetes by 2-10 times more than people with normal weight. The rates increase in direct proportion depending on the weight gain.


It is not a secret to most people that diabetes causes dangerous conditions such as heart disease, damage to blood vessels connected to different parts of the body like the eyes and the limbs, kidney failure and damage to the nerves and other conditions that include almost every part of the body.


The relation between obesity and cancer has been confirmed after the studies conducted by the National Cancer Institute in America on 750,000 men and women for 12 years. The study discovered that the rates of developing cancer in the colon, large intestines and prostate were higher in overweight men compared to those with normal weight. Furthermore, the rates of developing cancer in the gallbladder, uterus and breast were higher in overweight women in comparison to those with normal weight.


The study concluded that obesity and weight gain are among the dangerous health conditions that increase mortality rates and developing fatal illnesses.


Studies conducted by Dr. Abdul Rahman Al-Naim and a group of Saudi doctors at the King Khalid Hospital in Al-Riyadh, with the participation of 177,13 Saudi citizens, indicated that the rates of weight gain and obesity in the Saudi society are among the highest rates in the world, in comparison to the World Health Organization or the United States’ percentages. The numbers were also higher among women than men.


These statistics are alarming, especially that the majority of the Saudi population is currently under 30. In other words, the rates of developing all the health conditions mentioned above will increase during the next two decades, which will exploit the national human and financial resources.


We live in a time governed by limited human and financial resources, which requires prioritizing and mindful usage of the resources available in the right channels to reach the best results possible.


The United States has noticed these factors and reconsidered the health system in general, and put precautions as a top priority and spent fortunes on it to receive good revenues in the near future.


The standards of health development – on the general and comprehensive level – do not only exist in our ability to own the latest technologies and medical devices and perform the most difficult operations in our hospitals – like organ transplants and artificial hearts – but also depend on coming up with long-term health programs to prevent health conditions before their occurrence and avoid side effects before they take control.


We need extensive health programs to spread awareness in our society about healthy eating habits, the harmful effects of obesity and weight gain, ant the importance of daily exercise and regular visits to the doctor and have regular medical checkups to measure blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and other levels that indicate hidden health conditions. We also need to develop programs and sport centers for everybody in society, youngsters and adults, men and women, in a way compatible with the Islamic etiquette.


It is also important to use the media for that goal, and set a budget that meets the seriousness of expected problems in the near future.


The Islamic Sharia helped in taking all possible methods that benefit humanity. Our societies enjoy divine qualities and rules that cannot be found in other secular societies; it is necessary to use these rules and teachings to spread awareness and health precautions.


The prophet (PBUH) said “No human ever filled a vessel worse than the stomach. Sufficient for any son of Adam are some morsels to keep his back straight. But if it must be, then one third for his food, one third for his drink and one third for his breath.” He also said “We are a people who do not eat until we are hungry. And if we eat, we do not eat to our fill.” And right was the holy prophet… who doesn’t speak from his own inclination. It is not but a revelation revealed.