According to a 2006 Purdue University study, evangelicals are considered the heaviest of all religious groups. The study found that Baptists lead the group, with a 30 percent obesity rate, compared to Jews at one percent and Buddhists and Hindus at less than 0.7 percent.
Similarly, a 2011 Northwestern University study that tracked more than 3,000 people for 18 years, revealed that those who attend church or a bible study on a weekly basis are 50 percent more likely to be obese. On a larger scale, nearly one-half of the American population will be obese by 2030, reports a 2012 study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Almost all spiritual institutions in America and the world will agree that God wants you at your very best in every single aspect. Here at Health Fitness Revolution, we know He wants America and the world to be healthy and fit. That’s why our team is the first in the United States and the world to begin exploring the role of health and fitness in spiritual institutions. Because leaders of spiritual institutions hold a strong influence on their congregation, we published the first article of its kind on the Top 10 Fittest Christian Leaders in the United States.
We followed with articles on the Top 10 Fittest Religious Leaders in the United States, and the Top Fittest Female Pastors in the United States. In our continued efforts to make a stronger impact on the spiritual world in America, we ranked the Top 20 Fittest Churches in America, the Top 20 Fittest Churches in Texas, and finally the Top 50 Fittest Mega Churches in America. From our perspective, we have only scratched the surface of the enormous potential that spiritual institutions can contribute in the fight against obesity, a plague that is threatening to destroy the very nature of our creativity, productivity, discipline, focus, determination and freedom that the Western civilization stands for.
“My main message to churches is to live like Jesus,” said Samir Becic to The Christian Post. “Two thousand years ago, we didn’t have access to processed food so Jesus only ate organic. Jesus was active; He was kind and always helping people. All those components that Jesus had 2,000 years ago are prefect examples of how to live a healthy lifestyle in the 21st century. Spiritual balance, social interaction, kindness, happiness, physical activity and organic food — that is my main message.”
“We want to focus on the Christian community because they have the highest obesity rate of any community in the U.S., and we believe that our bodies truly are our temples. When you are healthy, you’re able to be more focused on God, I believe that with my heart and soul. That’s a key component to a healthy lifestyle,” said Becic.
Samir Becic, founder of Health Fitness Revolution, started the Total Life Challenge at Lakewood Church, the largest in America, four years ago. Now, he is determined more than ever to challenge the thousands of churches and spiritual institutions across the country. As of right now, more than 500 churches in America are using Health Fitness Revolution resources in order to equip their congregations with the necessary knowledge and education about healthy lifestyle and physical fitness.
“Spiritual awareness is one of the key components of healthy lifestyle that impacts the whole body and rejuvenates the spirit,” Becic said. “Physical fitness and healthy nutrition allows that spirit to flourish to new dimensions and many people experience a closer relationship to God. The Mega-Churches of today hold a strong influence on the general opinion of mainstream America. Followers look for daily guidance from pastors and heads of ministries on the best way to live their lives and raise their families. It is enormously important to provide the churches with the correct knowledge on fitness and proper nutrition so they can influence and better their members’ lives.”
If your spiritual institution would like to get healthy and fit, email Health Fitness Revolution at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.