Obesity

Obesity child

Overview of obesity

Obesity is a primary global concern at present, affecting children, teens, and adults equally. It not only increases the body weight but also leads to a wide range of clinical complications. World Health Organization has estimated that post-1980, the global obesity rate has doubled. According to recent epidemiological studies by WHO, more than 1.9 billion adults all over the world were found overweight in 2014. Among them, about 600 million were obese. The total cost of treatment and hospitalization due to obesity and associated diseases in the United States was $99.2 million in 1995.

 

What is obesity?

Obesity manIn general terms, obesity can be defined as the increase in body weight due to the presence of excess fat. But health organizations have indicated a marked difference between obesity and overweight. Overweight may be caused due to the overall weight of body muscles, bones, fat and water. Obesity is caused exclusively due to the presence of excess fat in the body. Body Mass Index (BMI) plays an important role in determining whether a person is overweight or obese. A BMI of 25-29 kg/m2 is attributed to overweight. A BMI of 30 kg/m2 or above refers to obesity. Both overweight and obesity result from excess unused energy within the body that is stored as body fat.

 

What is the reason behind obesity?

There are numerous environmental and physiological factors that contribute to obesity in an individual. Dietary habits and the extent of physical activities performed by a person also determine his possibility of becoming obese. The generalized factors of obesity are as follows-

  • Excess calorie intake: Frequent and excess intake of food containing high calorie, saturated fats and animal protein result in excess fat within the body. Also, few people suffer from Binge Eating Disorder which is characterized by excess intake of food (of any kind) within very short intervals of time.
  • Limited physical activities: Complete lack of physical exercise (along with heavy eating) and extreme lethargy can be a primary cause of obesity. In this case, the fat acquired from the food does not get a chance to burn completely and gets deposited within the body.
  • Heredity: Studies by Center for Disease Control and Prevention show that BMI is influenced to a great extent by genetic factors and contribute to fat deposition within a person’s body. Two obese parents are 75% likely to have an obese child and only one obese parent has a possibility of 25-50%.
  • Hormones: A variation in hormone level within the body occurs during puberty, pregnancy or after menopause which can lead to disturbed fat metabolism and resultant fat deposition within the body. Impaired functioning of the thyroid gland (due to disturbed endocrine activities) causes Hypothyroidism which can lead to obesity.
  • Medications: Some medications such as glucocorticoids can cause abnormal fat gain (truncal adiposity in most cases). Few other drugs like Insulin and oral hypoglycemics cause obesity due to excess gain of adipose tissues within the body.
  • Emotional Stress: Emotional stress and depression can trigger weight gain in 10-20% cases. Inhabitants of northern latitudes suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) particularly during Winter, which leads to severe depression and ultimate fat deposition.
  • Chronic diseases: Existing diseases within the body such as Cushing’s Syndrome, Hypothalamic diseases, and Hypogonadism can cause abnormal endocrine activities or erroneous fat metabolism which might lead to obesity.
  • Ethnicity: Different ethnic groups follow different diet patterns which determine the amount of fat metabolism and fat deposition within the body.

 

What are the warning signs?

Obesity childThe obese condition can be easily identified by observing the inevitable signs and symptoms of an increase in body weight and fat deposition. The following signs must be carefully observed-

  • Abnormal deposition of fat in different parts of the body, especially in the waist and abdominal portions
  • High BMI
  • Increased waist circumference (above 40 inches in males and above 35 inches in females)
  • Inability to fit into clothes and tight feeling (around the chest) when they are worn
  • Heavy sweating
  • Shortness of breath
  • Extreme fatigue and decrease in work-level productivity
  • Inability to perform physical activities for long
  • Snoring tendencies
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Joint pains
  • Feeling of social awkwardness due to distorted bodyline
  • Irritability and mental depression

 

What are the different types of obesity?

Obesity may be roughly classified into six different categories based on age, mental health, economic conditions, and gender. These are as follows-

  • Young healthy females: This category is obese but does not have obesity associated clinical complications.
  • Heavy drinking males: They can grow alcoholic obesity and clinical complications (cardiovascular disorders)
  • Anxious middle-aged: It refers to women with disturbed mental conditions.
  • Affluent and healthy elderly: Usually they have high alcohol intake and high blood pressure.
  • Physically sick elderly: Aged people with chronic diseases like osteoarthritis.
  • Poor health: It includes people having several chronic diseases.

 

Can there be additional systemic complications?

An obese condition can lead to several clinical complications like –

  • Cardiovascular disorders ( atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, cardiomyopathy)
  • Hypertension and stroke
  • Chronic diseases like osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, Diabetes (Type 2)

 

What laboratory tests do the doctors recommend?

Proper clinical diagnosis of obesity can be carried out via accurate measurement of BMI and blood pressure.

 

Treatment and prevention

Obesity dietThe treatment of obesity varies from person to person because there are a lot of varying factors that could contribute to a higher BMI. Try to follow a regulated and consistent weight loss plan and don’t rush to lose weight fast. Slow and consistent weight loss results are more effective and long-lasting than quick-fix weight loss programs.  For extremely obese people, bariatric surgery might be a good option. It is important to find the exact cause of obesity – diet, lifestyle, genetic, or endocrine/metabolic disorders. Treating the underlying conditions and practicing healthy dietary practices can help regulate weight in many obese individuals.

The following preventive measures must be adopted to keep obesity at a bay:

  • Bring considerable improvements to your eating habits. Eat healthier versions of food instead of opting for processed/ instant versions.
  • Refrain from eating while watching TV. In fact, decrease the amount of time you spend sitting and live a more physically active life.
  • Make healthy substitutions such as switching over to whole grain instead of refined grains. Eat nutritionally dense foods which have a lower GI (glycemic index).
  • If one suffers from an eating disorder, he/she should consult a psychiatrist to treat the condition and improve eating habits.

TL;DR?

Obesity infographic

 

Facts

  • The global obesity rates have tripled in the past 4 decades. 1 out of every 3 Americans falls under the obese category.
  • Studies suggest that 70% of body weight variations have a genetic link.

Facts

  • Globally, more than 10% of the population can be categorized as obese.
  • CDC or Centre for Disease Control defines obesity as the state where an individual has BMI greater than equal to 30.

Facts

  • The annual medical cost associated with obesity and its related illnesses was roughly $ 147 billion in the year 2008.
  • According to a 2016 survey, there are more than 650 million obese people and 1.9 billion overweight individuals worldwide.

Related Conditions

Want to live a healthy lifestyle?

Subscribe to free FactDr newsletters.

REVAMP YOUR

If you're enjoying our website, we promise you'll absolutely love our new posts. Be the first one to get a copy!

Get factually correct, actionable tips delivered straight to your inbox once a week.

I want the latest scoop on :

We hate spam too. We will never share your email address with anyone. If you change your mind later, you can unsubscribe with just one click

By clicking Subscribe, I agree to the FactDr Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of FactDr subscriptions at any time.

Display this infographic on your website

 

Dos and Don'ts

Dos
  • Eliminate all forms of sugar from the diet. This includes giving up processed food, fast food, and sodas.
  • Add a healthy amount of physical activities in your daily routine.
  • Take out time to de-stress yourself.
  • Eat more home-cooked foods.
  • Try to find if there are any underlying bodily conditions could be responsible for your higher BMI.
Don'ts
  • Resort to crash diets or skipping meals to lose weight. These habits make your body store more fats as the brain interprets this as a state of starvation.
  • Overeat just because you are eating only healthy foods. Don’t eat too close to bed time.
  • Keep longer intervals between each meal. Eat 5-6 smaller meals.

 

 

 

Related Conditions

Trending Topics

anal sex
Anal Sex : Tips from expert on how to be kinky yet safe Whether it irks you or stokes your fantasies, anal sex has always been an intriguing sexual act. Learn…
diverticulitis diet
Diverticulitis diet: The right way to eat if you suffer from the disease Are you suffering from diverticultis but clueless about your diet ? Read this complete plan for diverticulitis diet…
autoimmune diseases facts
Autoimmune Diseases: Find out if your body is attacking you right now Did you know your body can harm itself? What are autoimmune diseases and why does it harm some…
nature health benefits
Green Healing: The amazing health benefits of being in nature You have no idea what sitting in a closed room does to your body and mind.Can a stroll…
Jicama: A fiber-rich tuber for your weight loss goals Pronouced as HEE-kah-ma, Jicama is the "new kid on the block" that has taken the world by the…
hidden benefits walking
9 benefits of walking we bet you didn’t know! Did you know walking can be the miracle pill for eternal youth? Everyone knows walking is good for…
understanding addiction
Addiction explained: An obsession that could cost you your life Is addiction a behavioral disorder? Or is it a chronic disease? How does addiction cause chemical and structural…
liver detox facts
7 liver detox facts and why ignoring these could kill you! Are you taking care of this organ that handles over 500 different vital functions in your body? Your…
dance health benefits
5 unbelievable effects of dance on your overall health! You enjoy dancing, but did you know what else it does to your body? Dancing is not only…
GM Diet: The fastest way to lose weight or yet another hoax diet? General Motors started this trend of extreme dieting for 7 straight days to ensure its employees were able…
Creatine: Is this the right peak athletic-performance supplement for you? Creatine is the amino acid that boosts our energy. Did you know creatine supplements can help you reach…
yoga health benefits
How to practice yoga for astounding health benefits Can a 5000-year-old system be the ultimate body healer? Did you know yoga can make you smarter and…
sleep deprivation
Don’t let your sleep deficit grow into memory loss or heart attack Why is sleep important for us? How could sleep deprivation harm you? We bet you didn't know about…
L-arginine: Your search for the ultimate fitness booster ends here L-arginine is an amino acid necessary for the body to perform various functions.  It is essential in producing…
Improve sex life
9 best tips from around the world for better sex life How can the pungent-smelling garlic pack in a punch to your libido? How could something as slimy as…
Penis pump: Pump your way out of erectile dysfunction One of the options to treat erectile dysfunction is by the use of a penis pump. It is…
alcohol toxic
7 startling facts that will make you quit alcohol today Does drinking really make you friendly and happy? How many calories does a can of cold beer add…
Pumpkin Seeds: Why pumpkins are more than just for pies! Pumpkins have been long associated with Halloween carvings and delicious pies. But did you know that pumpkin seeds…
How chlorophyll is more than just a green pigment meant for photosynthesis Cholorphyll - you must know the usual function of this chemical in plants. But did you know that…
eating disorder anorexia
Eating Disorders: Lifestyle choice or a psychological condition? Is eating disorder just a harmless bad habit? Or does it represent grim psychological disorders? Do you want…
eating myths debunked
8 ‘healthy eating’ myths you believed until now Is a zero-carb diet really healthy for you? Are organic products worth their cost? Did you know how…
green tea benefits
Green Tea: Does it really aid weight loss and reverse aging? A centuries-old concoction of fresh green leaves, green tea holds the secret to healthy weight loss & delayed…
low fodmap plan
Troubled with IBS? Here’s a complete roadmap to the low FODMAP diet Leaky & inflammatory gut troubling you? No medicine bringing you relief from the pain? Why not try the…
kefir bottle
Kefir: Top reasons why this probiotic drink should be consumed by you Yet another remarkable fermented food, kefir is a much healthier version of yogurt. These chewy white grains can…
Maltitol: Things you must know about this artificial sweetener Sugar alcohols are produced by fruits and vegetables. Maltitol is an artificially produced sugar alcohol and is used…
tips for perfect sleep
Stop hitting the snooze button: 8 proven steps to perfect sleep Are you tired of not getting enough sleep? All your efforts for a sound sleep going in vain?…
boost immunity tips
Step up your defence: 15 proven tips on how to boost your immunity Want to naturally build up a stronger immunity? Tired of frequent colds and runny nose?You will never believe…
ashwagandha brain
Ashwagandha: The best-kept secret of Ayurveda now revealed! Ashwagandha literally means "smell of horse". Don't get bogged down by that one tiny detail because this ayurveduic…
Agave nectar: The bitter truth about this sweetener revealed Agave nectar is considered to be sweeter than the normal table sugar and even contains higher amounts of…
Grapeseed Oil: Find out how to use this oil without any side-effects Grapes are known for their delicious fresh taste and the fact that they make wine a healthy drink.…
hYdroxycut pills
Hydroxycut: How safe are these so-called weight loss supplements? Hydroxycut is a blend of several different ingredients formulated to promote weight loss; powered by a key weight…
Chlorella: Therapeutic powers of the billion-year-old algae now within your reach Chlorella - A billion year old nutrient-rich algae that can potentially ward off cancers and high cholesterol; the…
How can berberine supplements help you live longer and healthier? Berberine is a turmeric look-alike herbal extract that is credited with numerous health benefits ranging from diabetes cure…
stress depressed anxiety
Are you depressed or just stressed? Know when to see a doctor Why are some people more anxious than others? Is being depressed the same as feeling sad? Have you…
turmeric skin
We bet you didn’t know that turmeric could be this beneficial! Did you know that turmeric, a humble ingredient found in most Indian kitchens could cure countless ailments and…
Garlic health benefits cloves
Garlic: Nature’s white pill as an effective home remedy What are the secrets hidden in these tiny white pills? Find out the immense health benefits of using…
LDL cholesterol level
Lecithin: Learn how you can utilize this fatty acid to improve your cholesterol count Lecithin is primarily a fatty acid found in common foods such as soy and eggs. However, this fatty…
How cooking with CLA safflower oil can help you lose weight? Read and discover more about CLA safflower oil and how it can aid faster fat metabolism in people…
Top 15 fat burning foods you need to start eating from today! Tired of going to gym everyday but seeing no change in your weight? Try these top fat burning…
social media adddiction
Your health in the age of Social Media: Why is digital detox a necessity? Did you know that more than 400 million people are dangerously addicted to social media? Are you one…
cancer facts
8 hard-hitting truths no one tells you about cancer Did you know that 1.5 million new cases of cancer are reported every year? Can second-hand smoking kill…
carrageenan seaweed
Carrageenan: How a simple seaweed extract could better your gut health & immunity Eat more ice cream to prevent cold and flu? –With carrageenan you get one simple seaweed extract that…
acne removal tips
Anatomy of acne: 7 instant steps to kiss those zits goodbye Blackheads, whiteheads, or pimples-call them what you may. Acne is never good news.Did you know some of the…
MANUKA HONEY child
Manuka Honey Manuka honey is a specific type of honey produced by honey bees that collect nectar from the flowers…
Hate making breakfast?Fast and healthy breakfast recipes just for you! Tired of snatching a bagel every morning for breakfast during the rush hour? Here are few fast and…
Bulletproof coffee recipe
Bulletproof Coffee – Breakfast of champions or yet another health fad? Can this special ketogenic coffee really make your body race as fast as a bullet?
paleo keto diet
Paleo vs. Keto: Which diet plan is best suited for your body goals? Is eating like a caveman the right way to go? Can you really eat fats to burn fats…
High Fiber Diet – Fire up your fiber intake for these health benefits! Regular bowels, healthy detox, higher immunity, and guaranteed weight loss - a high fiber diet can bring all…
Amaranth: Why is this native Peruvian grain called the “crop of the future”? Full of healthy high proteins and gluten-free, the grain, Amaranth, the tasty and ancient pseudo cereal from Peru,…
nutritional yeast bread
Nutritional Yeast : How can a fungi culture be good for your body? Nutritional yeast: How a simple culture of fungi can transform your skin, digestion, immunity , and much more.…
MCT oil athletes
MCT Oil : The kind of fats you should be eating MCT oil or Medium Chain Triglycerides is the new buzzword in the fitness industry. What makes this oil…
canola oil cooking
Canola oil: How safe is it to consume this popular cooking oil? Extracted from rapeseeds, Canola oil derives its name from Canadian Oil. Did you know that some forms of…
maltodextrin sugar
Maltodextrin: What are the hidden health benefits of this food additive? Maltodextrin is one of the few food additives that has been relatively deemed safe. Many experts now have…
Moringa drink
Moringa: This could be the most nutrient-dense food known to us! Moringa is a lush green tree brimming with over 90 essential nutrients required for a healthy mind and…
black seed oil benefits
Black Seed Oil: What secret benefits could it bestow on your health? Black seeds or nigella seeds are tiny packets of health brimming with amazing benefits. Find out why should…
Fructose: Healthy fruit-product or loaded with toxic calories? Fructose is a sugar derived from fruits and other plant sources. Does this mean that fructose consumption is…
hidden causes obesity
8 hidden causes of obesity you probably didn’t know! Did you know that around 2 billion people worldwide are either overweight or obese? Are you too a…
lifestyle diseases
The Big 5 lifestyle diseases: How your everyday living might be killing you You'd be shocked to know how unhealthy and potentially fatal your everyday routine could be. Has the modern…
healthy habits
10 healthy habits: Have a hearty kick-start to the New Year! Do you set goals that are too difficult for you to maintain? Are to struggling to follow healthy…
antibiotic resistance
Antibiotic Resistance: How common diseases become deadly Can a cold kill you? How important is to get a flu shot? Why do antibiotics fail against…
global warming health
Rising mercury and your health: How Global Warming is damaging your body Don't ignore the rising temperature. Global warming causes more than just heat strokes. It could be a lot…
Activated charcoal: The instant health benefits of this “diamond in the coal mine” How can the pitch black activated charcoal help you whiten your teeth? Or have a hangover-free sunday morning?…
Milk Thistle skin
Milk Thistle: Find possible cures for fatal diseases in these purple blooms Milk thistle is well-known for treating liver conditions. However, did you know that it comes with a plethora…
castor oil hair
Castor oil : A vitamin-rich oil for shiny locks and healthy bowels Castor oil bestows unlimited benefits, whether you use it for your hair or skin. But did you know…
iron food shellfish
Iron-Rich Foods: Eat these foods to keep fatigue and anemia away! How to ensure a muscles as strong as iron? Eat iron rich foods ! Iron is one of…
Salt dangers
Sodium chloride: The wonders and dangers of the simple table salt Sodium chloride is a salt containing sodium and chlorine ions at a 1:1 ratio. It is edible and…
Pomegranate: Why are they called ruby red pearls of health? The shrub Punicagranatum yields a red fruit which is what you normally call pomegranate. The fruit is round…
gout diet purines
Gout Diet : Get relief from painful joints by eating these foods Are you a victim of this painful condition? Are medications providing only short relief? Find a list of…
Anhedonia: Does the chronic inability to feel joy affect you too? How often do you feel dragged down by an invisible force? Do you feel an inexplicable emotional numbness…
stress adverse effects
Fight, flight, or freeze: 8 ways stress can ruin your body Did you know that stress is in-built in our systems? It helped our ancestors respond to danger. How…