Nowadays, the harms of filling our “vessel” are well-known. To get a better idea about the risks associated with overeating, we consulted Dr. Ahmed Mohamed Aboulghate, a member of the Egyptian Medical Association for the Study of Obesity (EMASO).
He told AboutIslam, “Overeating and obesity are so dangerous that not only did the WHO recognize obesity as a disease but in fact, it named it ‘the Epidemic of the 21st century’!”
Aboulghate further reinforced this by mentioning that in recent years obesity has been the number-one cause of deaths in the US, “even preceding smoking, which has been on the top for decades.”
Aboulghate asserted that while modern-day medical advances have significantly increased human life expectancy, this may be the first generation to show a declining slope; all because of obesity.
According to Aboulghate, the spectrum of diseases induced by overeating starts from small discomforts – such as indigestion and sleep disorders – to a long, horrifying list of complications – such as “Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, heart diseases, liver, and gallbladder diseases, and decreased fertility.”
Obesity also increases the risk of “complications during pregnancy, respiratory disorders like sleep apnea syndrome (serious life-threatening attacks of inability to breathe during sleep, because of accumulation of fats in the airways), osteoarthritis (joint inflammation, especially of the lower back and knees), as well as up to 20 types of cancer,” said Aboulghate.
And as if these physical problems were not enough, Imam Shafi`i, an Islamic scholar who is considered the founder of the Shafi’i school of jurisprudence (fiqh), pinpointed several intangible harms brought about by overeating.
These include the weighing down of the body, hardening of the heart, driving away insight, sleepiness, and weakening of one’s aptitude for worship. (Al-Duqur).