“Gluttony” is listed as one of the seven deadly sins. This implies that overeating is no laughing matter and shouldn’t be ignored. Moderation is vital in all we do; once we drift into having too little or too much of anything, then the side effect tends to be problematic. Whether it is through dishing out huge portion sizes or going back for seconds…thirds…and even a forth, overeating wreaks havoc on the body. It causes weight gain which increases the risk of contracting lifestyle diseases, it makes individuals sluggish, and it pressures the pocket.
When food is yummy, it becomes twice as hard to put down the fork. For some, when this happens self-control is defeated. And so overtime each extra fork full of food swallowed, welcomes extra pounds on the body. Not only is overeating a big weight gain factor, but it also puts the overeater at risk for acquiring lifestyle diseases such as obesity, hypertension and diabetes—especially when the food being overeaten is unhealthy. Lifestyle diseases can be described as diseases associated with or brought on by a person/group way of life. While genetics may influence some of these maladies, in most cases unhealthy habits such as gluttony and lack of exercise are the cause.
One of the main functions of food is to fuel the body. It offers the nutrients necessary to energize the body for work. This Jamaican proverb adds confirmation, “Empty bag cyaa stan up” (An empty bag cannot stand up) which means a hungry person cannot work. On the contrary, after overeating, work is the last thing on the overeater’s mind. Stretching the stomach pass its natural capacity leaves an uneasy feeling that tends to drive the body into lazy-mode. Energy wonders off and drowsiness sets in. In essence, gluttony robs energy and productivity.
Lastly, overeating presents two aspects of excess spending that can be explained in two sentences. It is only logical that eating more equals to cooking more, which results in buying more groceries. Secondly, the extra food eaten more often than not leads to lifestyle diseases, which results in the added expenses of paying for doctor bills and medications.
The truth is regardless of the reason people overeat, it can be conquered by practicing self-control. Accept that overeating is an unhealthy habit with long term life-threatening effects, and insist on portion control—no matter how good the food is. Proverbs 23: 20-21 sums this up nicely; “Be not among drunkards or among gluttonous eaters of meat, for the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags.”