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Obesity: What is it, Causes and how to prevent it

by | Apr 27, 2021 | Obesity | 0 comments

What is obesity

Obesity is a disease characterized by a pathological accumulation of body fat with consequences that are also important for health and quality of life. Obesity is one of the world’s major public health problems.

It has a long-lasting impact on life because it can lead to high blood pressure, diabetes mellitus, sleep apnea, and cardiovascular disease.

Obesity is also established thanks to the body mass index (BMI). When this is equal to or greater than 30, we’re talking about obesity.

Losing weight is a decisive step in treating obesity-related health problems.

This is essential to make changes in one’s lifestyle: follow a healthy diet, lead an active life, and constantly devote oneself to physical activity. In severe cases, good help may be obtained from surgery.

What are the causes of obesity?

Obesity is usually due to an imbalance between intake and energy consumption.

This imbalance between the calories you eat and the calories you consume leads to excess fat accumulation.

Therefore, in particular sedentary lifestyle, nutrition, quantity, and quality of night sleep play a fundamental role.

Leading an inactive and sedentary lifestyle reduces the chance of burning calories. Instead, they are well consuming by physical exercise and everyday activities.

Another factor that can cause an increase in body weight is nutrition. A diet that includes an excessive introduction of unhealthy calories and eating habits is decisive in obesity.

Other conditions are favorable: sleeping a few hours at night can lead to hormonal imbalances, leading to increased appetite and a desire for caloric foods and carbohydrates. 

Some frequently used medications can promote appetite and cause weight gain if attention is not paid to diet and physical activity. 

Examples include anti-depressants, anti-epileptics, anti-psychotics, diabetes medications, steroids, and beta-blockers. 

Care should also be in the post-partum period. Some women, after the necessary weight gain due to pregnancy, sometimes struggle to return to normal. 

In some cases, this may contribute to the development of obesity.

More rarely, obesity is due to genetic conditions, such as Prader-Willi syndrome, endocrine diseases, such as Cushing’s syndrome, or other diseases, such as polycystic ovarian syndrome. 

Arthritis patients may then develop obesity due to the need for reduced physical activity.

What are the symptoms?

The presence of too much weight undermines normal daily activities. So obese people can often feel drowsy, even if they do not make excessive efforts.

May suffer from:

  • excessive sweating
  • sleep problems
  • snoring
  • pain in the back
  • knees
  • hip.

How to prevent it?

Obesity is closely depending on lifestyle, so it is essential to prevent weight gain and the health problems it causes. Regular exercise, healthy nutrition, active life are necessary for correct body weight.

An adult should take at least thirty minutes a day five times a week to moderate exercises, such as fast walking or swimming.

Privileging nutritious, healthy, low-calorie foods such as vegetables and whole grains in your diet is an important food choice.

Limits on saturated fat, sugars, and alcohol too. Knowing your habits and your body also allows you to pinpoint what situations your desire to eat to ensure the best possible management.

Keeping your weight under control also helps prevent excess weight because it keeps you in the eye and noticing small weight gain before it becomes a problem.

Diagnosis: BMI Obesity

The BMI is using in the diagnosis of obesity too. When this is equal to or greater than 30, it indicates obesity. The body mass index calculates by dividing the weight in kilograms (kg) by the height at the square expressed in meters (m).

  • Less than 18.5 = underweight
  • 18.5 – 24.9 = normoweight
  • 25 to 29.9 = overweight
  • 30 and above – obesity
  • 40 and above = extreme obesity

However, the body mass index is not the only useful data in diagnosing obesity, also because it provides incomplete information.

The BMI does not directly measure body fat and does not distinguish between lean and fatty mass.

 So, for example, an athlete can have a BMI that corresponds to obesity, but not because of it.

The patient have to fill out their health diary, an essential tool for the patient and the health professional.

During the day, the patient will score every time he eats and drinks, with his hour, the type of food or drink taken, and the amount (in grams or measurements like dishes, glasses, spoons, etc.).

It must also involve the presence, before and after each moment, of the feeling of hunger and satiety.

The diary will also contain notes on the movement during the day, and the emotions and thoughts related to the diet and influence it (boredom, nervousness, relaxation, fun).

The interview with the psychologist is a fundamental step to getting to know the patient, to discover his or her relationship with diet and food style. Even in the case of surgery, it is possible to avail itself of psychological support.

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