Is Your Church Making You Fat???

No, this isn’t another article celebrating those who are thin. Despite popular opinion, being ultra thin is not for everyone. The subject gained interest soon after I posted a social media poll asking church members to name the various occasions their churches hosted events involving food. The response was overwhelming.  Parishioners across the nation started naming activities like church anniversaries, Pastors anniversaries, friends & family celebrations, bake sales, fish frys, harvest celebrations, cookouts, homegoings AND homecomings just to name a few. Some of the occasions didn’t even official names, they were just simply referred to as 1st or 3rd Sunday meals.

Feast of the Lord??

My personal favorite was a fundraiser my own church made up called “Twelve Tables”.  Each of the twelve tables depicted a month during the year and the theme of course was FOOD! The tables all represented holidays and displayed a virtual cornucopia of delicacies. One ticket, afforded you the opportunity to partake in a year’s worth of meals. July’s table was filled with cookout favorites like ribs, potato salad and burgers, January boasted pig’s feet, collard greens and black-eyed peas then there was November…the grandest of all feasts complete with a full Thanksgiving spread.

What’s Up With All This Food At Church?

One year, during one of these events a church member had fallen ill.  911 was called and an ambulance arrived. When the crew entered the church, they stopped dead in their tracks taken back by the unbelievable sight of wall-to-wall food in our fellowship hall. One of the EMT workers said “It’s wonder no one has had a heart attack in here. What’s up with all of this food???

Great question. What IS up with all of the food at our churches?? Fellowshipping has somehow become synonymous with the Feast of the Lord….LITERALLY!

Churches are increasingly becoming a breeding ground for people slowly digging their own graves with a knife and fork. 

But its not just church members, nationally nearly 38% of adults are obese and approximately 8% are considered extremely obese.  Yet, diet and weight loss procedures have often been a confusing and even daunting task for many. Overall, the goal is not that everyone should be skinny but each individual should strive to maintain a healthy weight range to avoid potential issues such as limited mobility, heart diseases, breathing disorders, diabetes and a host of other preventable ailments.

Here are some stats from U.S. states:

  •  Louisiana, Alabama, West Virginia and Mississippi have the highest adult obesity rates nationally with over 35% of adults who are considered obese. Louisiana being the highest at 36.2%
  • Mississippi has the highest rate of diabetes at 14.7%.
  • West Virginia has the highest rate of hypertension at 41%.

Charles Butler Jr. the founder of the Stellar-nominated gospel group “Charles Butler & Trinity” knows the struggle of weight loss all too well. At his peak weight, he was 499 pounds. But today, with the help of the medical professionals at the Decalo Weight Loss Center in Maryland he has lost 150 lbs and counting within 9 months and without surgery! He also serves as their Brand Ambassador.

The picture below of Charles wearing a suit was taken 2017 on the red carpet at the Stellar Awards. The other picture, again on the Stellar red carpet was taken just last month and really shows his remarkable transformation!

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CF United:  What do you think is one of the greatest misconceptions about people who are overweight?

CB: I think one of the greatest misconceptions is that we are unkempt. That we live a piggish lifestyle, but even at my heaviest I was always well-groomed, always smelled well and always kept myself up.  So that’s one of the biggest misconceptions, which is why one of the things I’ve always hated is when people have said “Oh you smell so good” it was like I was not supposed to.

CF United: What was the turning point for you that made you lose the weight? 

CB: The turning point was definitely travel and being able to fit comfortably on an airplane. I knew this what I was supposed to do and if I had to ride coach I did not want to be uncomfortable or make someone else uncomfortable. Between travel and even seeing pictures of myself on the red carpet. I just knew I wanted to be better and live better.

I actually thought about this coming home last month from the Stellar Awards.  I had a connector flight and it took us all on a small jet and I said God no….I was so comfortable on the other plane. But when it came time to board I didn’t have the usual anxiety. I didn’t say I have to get on another plane or ya’ll have to rearrange anything. I just got on my plane, sat down, slept and came home.

CF United: How did you find out about the Decalo Weight Loss Center?

CB: I got a call from a gentleman I knew who asked me if I’d mind taking on an endorsement with the Decalo Weight Loss Center. He saw me once on the red carpet and at that time I had lost about 20 lbs, to me that was not a significant amount of weight but I said to myself you know what… I can’t do this anymore and I said “Sure” I would do it and he said, “You have to be serious about it” and that’s when I said “You know let’s do it”. When I went into Decalo I weighed 499 lbs  I didn’t know it…you never could not of told me I weighed that much.  I just let it go. It was the fear of the unknown, it was like if I don’t know I’ll never know and because I never had medical issues I figured I’m good.

 

CF United: You’ve tried in the past to lose weight. What was different about the Decalo Weight Loss Center?

CB: The accountability, the staff is excellent! There’s a lady named Tish that I deal with on a weekly basis and she’s awesome to communicate with. I will never forget, once when I was in Philadelphia I went to a restaurant for a dinner party and literally almost had a small breakdown because there was nothing on the menu except pizza, pasta and salad. So I went to the bathroom and called Tish and I said, “I’m salad’ed out…I don’t know what to eat”.  She literally sat with me on the phone and went over the menu. THAT right there meant the world to me. It was the most human thing ever for her to sit on the phone with me while she was in her office and say, “Ok…what’s on the menu?”.  She said, “I know you don’t want salad, so let’s not do salad” and then she asked if they had alternative crusts with the pizzas and they didn’t so she asked what types of pastas they had? Eventually, I wound up getting lobster ravioli.  She said, “Ask them if they can go light on the sauce” and they were able to do that. She was sooo accommodating and that made a world of difference.  And after all of that, I think I ate less than half of the meal.

CF United: Decalo also offers online products such as the BellyTox Tea. What is it and how has it helped you?

In the beginning of my weight loss journey, I noticed at first there are these big numbers but then the weight loss numbers started to decline. My first week at Decalo I lost 18 lbs, then afterwards I was losing maybe one or two pounds per week so the BellyTox Tea literally accelerated my weight loss. The Belly Detox Tea has a 14-day AM and PM tea.

Kudos to Charles for sharing his amazing weight loss journey. Find out more about the “BellyTox Tea” or call the Decalo Weight Loss Center and be sure to mention you saw them on Church Folks United!

Overall, it takes approximately 21 days to form a new habit. Perhaps you’ve already fallen off on a New Year’s resolution. Don’t give up on the rest of the year.  Your season for a healthy beginning can start today. If staying motivated or even getting motivated is a challenge, consider partnering with someone willing to share the journey like a spouse, a close friend or a support group. If emotions are what trigger your overeating, consider some meditative techniques and of course prayer.  You might even want to try getting yourself moving with some spiritual vibes combining gospel music with inspiration and exercise but don’t attempt a drastic overhaul overnight. Remember, gradual changes can eventually become routine.  It’s your temple invest in it and cherish it.

This is a judgment-free zone! Feel free to share your own journeys and testimonies here at Church Folks United to help encourage, uplift and bless others!

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