Obesity and being overweight have become one of the leading health problems around the world today in children, teens, and adults. In 2017, the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) had recorded that 14.8% of American high schoolers were obese and that another 15.6% were overweight.
But why does obesity continue ravaging the lives of many people and why should everyone know its health risks?
What is Obesity
Obesity is a health condition wherein a certain individual has an immense level of excessive fat which is defined by both environmental and genetic factors. This is most commonly measured with the help of Body Mass Index (BMI). If you have a BMI of 30 or higher, you fall under the category of obesity.
How to measure BMI
BMI is used to measure obesity and in adults. Your BMI can be calculated by dividing your current weight in kilograms and your height in meter squared. If the result is 30 to 39, you’re considered obese. More than that and it’s considered as severe obesity.
If you fall into any sort of unhealthy weight, whether it’s underweight or overweight, it’s always best that you consult an expert. There could be underlying causes to your weight or that you are at risk of certain health issues because of it.
Risks of Obesity
Some of the well-known risks of obesity include:
- High blood pressure
- High cholesterol
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Sleep apnea
- Gallbladder problems
- Respiratory problems
- Fatty liver disease
- Kidney problems
- Joint and bone problems
- Cancer such as breast and colon cancer
These health issues can be chronic and can lead to a lifetime of going to the hospital and treatments. Not only does it make it hard to live more comfortably but you also have to suffer financially as medical expenses are not cheap.
The most frightening result of obesity is death. Any of these health risks could lead to a high mortality rate which is definitely not something you can just nod off.
Depression and Obesity
Another health risk of obesity is that it’s highly linked with depression. While others may believe depression leads to obesity, a recent study from both the University of Exeter in the UK and the University of South Australia shows that it’s obesity that can lead to depression.
These studies suggest that being overweight and obese can cause depression with or without other health problems.
This is something that should be pondered on, especially since more people are being more open about mental health issues and its risks, especially depression. It’s one of the leading causes of death as more people struggle with depression and stigma, the more people resort to suicide and self-harming.
It’s not just about experiencing relentless body shaming or having low self-esteem, having depression could lead to an even poorer lifestyle which could then lead to other health problems.
Causes of Obesity
The main cause of obesity is eating too much but moving too little. The body stores the excess fat, and since you aren’t moving or you don’t have an active lifestyle, every calorie you take just adds up to your weight.
Normally, the type of food that can lead to obesity are those with high levels of refined sugar and processed foods. This includes sodas and junk foods, most especially from fast foods. A single meal of a milkshake, fries, and hamburger can already total to 1,500 calories.
It may sound typical, but a physically active adult man only needs around 2,500 calories a day while an active adult woman needs around 2,000 calories only. Imagine eating this type of food for every meal, every single day.
While a lot of people go overboard their needed calorie intake a day, they often exercise and move around, burning the excess calories and not allowing it to be stored as fat. That way, they can still be physically fit despite taking in more than the average calorie they need for that day.
Basically, the best way to avoid obesity is to control what you eat and to lead an active lifestyle.
Other health problems
However, obesity can also be traced back to other health problems. In these cases, obesity and gaining extra weight is caused either by the problem itself or the medications and treatments involved.
The thing is, these aren’t as normal as the leading and most common cause of obesity. Still, these problems exist.
One of them may be growth hormone deficiency which is common for adults and may be the reason why a lot of obese people are adults. Their metabolism significantly slows down because of lack of HGH. Supplements like Saizen growth hormone could help in increasing levels of HGH and weight loss due to the boosting of metabolism.
It can be tough to start losing weight once you’re obese. It’s a long and arduous journey. However, the start is accepting that you’re facing a health issue and that you have to treat it. For a healthy way of losing way, it’s always best that you contact your physician.