Understanding Obesity

Posted: Jul 29 in Medical Weight Loss News by

what is obesityCarrying extra weight is always dangerous to your health, even if the amount of excess weight is small. When an individual gains enough weight to be considered obese, the problem becomes even more serious. Unfortunately, this condition is much more widespread than many people realize. In fact, according to data published by the Centers for Disease Control, more than one-third of all adults living in the United States are currently obese.

What Causes Obesity?

Although some people mistakenly believe that weight gain is always the result of overeating, obesity rarely has a single cause. For most people, the development of obesity occurs as a result of several contributing factors. Risk factors for obesity may include:

  • A busy lifestyle
  • Poor nutrition
  • Bad food choices
  • Easy access to processed foods
  • Lack of physical activities
  • Genetic predisposition
  • Age, race, or ethnicity

Effects of Obesity

Once an individual has become obese, the condition can lead to the development of many other dangerous health conditions. According to the CDC, obesity can lead to:

  • High blood pressure
  • Gallbladder problems
  • Liver problems
  • Increased risk of stroke
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Various types of cancer
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Osteoarthritis
  • High cholesterol

Obesity is also a costly disease, both for the individuals suffering from it and the medical community as a whole.

Reversing the Condition

If you are living with obesity, weight loss is essential to your health and your future. However, losing weight is not always easy, especially when you are working against multiple contributing factors. Below are some techniques commonly used to facilitate weight loss for obese patients.

  • Exercise: Exercising on a regular basis burns more calories, contributes to the development of muscle mass, and improves the function of important organs, such as the heart and lungs. On its own, however, exercise has minimal contribution to weight loss.
  • Commercial Diets: Eating a balanced diet that is low in fat and sugar can help with weight loss. Weight loss is facilitated by careful portion control and selection of food types.  Restricting calories is usually referred to as dieting and is often successful in achieving temporary weight loss. Unfortunately, most commercial diets cannot be maintained long terms and so weight often returns once a normal eating habits are resumed. The process of losing and gaining weight cyclically is called yo-yo dieting.
  • Weight loss medication: Certain medications can suppress the appetite and/or speed the metabolism, which improves the patient’s ability to lose weight.
  • Medical Weight Loss: In cases where other methods are not successful in helping a patient lose weight, medical weight loss has been shown to provide long-term weight loss for many people. Medical weight loss is a combination of medical monitoring, calorie controlled medical weight loss foods, FDA approved appetite suppressants and nutrition and behavioral education.

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