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Obesity: A Look at Current Understanding and Approaches to Treatment

Excessive body fat is the root cause of obesity, a complicated condition with several causes. Being overweight is more than simply an aesthetic issue. It's a medical issue that raises the odds of developing other conditions, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, and cancer.


Some individuals have trouble losing weight for a variety of reasons. Obesity disease is a complex disease that develops from interactions between genetics, physiology, environment, and dietary and lifestyle decisions.


The good news is that even a small amount of weight reduction may help alleviate or avoid many of the health issues connected with obesity. Weight loss is possible by combining a better diet, more exercise, and a shift in mindset. Treatment options for obesity include medically prescribed drugs and surgical methods of reducing body fat.


Why Do People Become Fat?


Excessive body fat and poor health may result from obesity, a complicated, chronic illness with several contributing factors. Excess fat stores in the body are not a disease in and of themselves. However, too much fat might alter the way your body works. A person's health may deteriorate over time due to the reasons for obesity, and they may even worsen over time.


The good news is that reducing your overall body fat may help your health tremendously. The effects of weight gain or loss, no matter how little, may be significant. However, not everyone will find success with the same weight reduction strategy. Most individuals have made at least two attempts to reduce their weight. The second half of the equation is equally as crucial as the first: maintenance.


How is Obesity Diagnosed?


Body mass index is used for the diagnosis of obesity (BMI). Their weight and height determine a person's Body Mass Index (BMI). The doctor will determine your BMI and note it in your medical files. According to body mass index (BMI), there are weight categories of "normal," "overweight," and "obesity."


  • Standard: between 18.5 and 24.9.
  • Normal weight range: 18-24
  • An obesity index of 30 or higher


Although body mass index (BMI) has limitations as a health indicator, it can make for a useful screening tool. When determining your health, you must consider your age, race, and waist size.


To be more specific, waist circumference is an important complement to body mass index. If your waistline is more than 40 inches (for males) or 35 inches (for women), you likely have more abdominal fat than is healthy. This is significant because persons with excess body fat are more likely to develop health problems, including hypertension and type 2 diabetes.


Your doctor may use your body mass index (BMI) to track changes in your weight and overall health. When your body mass index (BMI) is very high, they will also provide tips to improve your health. Since obesity is now considered a medical condition, its diagnosis and treatment are integral elements of standard healthcare.


When I'm Overweight, What Happens to My Body?


There are several physical manifestations of obesity. Some of them are just the physical consequences of being overweight. There is a direct correlation between excessive weight and increased strain on your bones and joints. Subtle changes in the blood's chemical composition may enhance your danger of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and stroke.


There are consequences that we don't fully understand now. Certain malignancies, for instance, have been linked to fat. We can only speculate about its origin, but it does. The cause of obesity is associated with an increased risk of dying at a younger age. Equally compelling is the evidence that reducing body fat by only 5-10% may greatly reduce these dangers.


Do Obese People Have a Higher Chance of Becoming Sick?


Here are few diseases caused by obesity:


  • Diabetic Retinopathy
  • Having an abnormally high blood pressure
  • Problems with lipid metabolism
  • Coronary illness
  • Certain Malignant Tumours
  • Stroke
  • Inflammation of the gallbladder
  • Arthritis
  • Apnea during Sleep


How To Avoid Obesity?


It is far simpler to avoid gaining weight in the first place than it is to lose weight. Once your body has adjusted to your new, higher "set point," that is, the weight at which it will continue to monitor your progress. Despite your best efforts, your body will always do all it can to keep you at a constant weight by adjusting how it responds to hunger and how much energy it uses.


Suppose you or your kid has been putting on weight recently, especially if you have a history of obesity in your family. In that case, it's best to get on top as soon as possible. It's never too early to take stock of your lifestyle and make adjustments that are within reason if you want to avoid future difficulties with obesity and weight loss.


Here's an illustration:

  • Do everything you can to give up a little bit of comfort


During the day, do you often indulge in a high-calorie snack or "pick-me-up," such as sugary soda? Even eating an additional 150 calories a day for a whole year would result in a weight gain of 10 pounds. That's the same as a small bag of potato chips or two regular-sized Oreos with extra filling.

  • Put in a little something to do


The alternative is to consider how you may use the additional 150 calories daily. Take the dog for a quick 35-minute walk, go for a 25-minute hike, or utilise an elliptical machine.

  • Purposefully go shopping


Store nutritious options at home and splurge on goodies only on rare occasions. Because of their lower glycemic index and greater fibre content, whole foods are better at stabilising blood sugar levels than processed snacks and sweets.

  • Foster health in all aspects of life


Cut down on your screen time and go for a walk instead. Controlling your hormone levels requires that you manage stress and get enough sleep. Don't worry so much about how much weight you're gaining; you are about making good adjustments and doing healthy things.


In Conclusion


You may have encountered the prejudice that views fat as a moral failing on the part of the individual. If you've reached the point of seeking medical help, you've probably already made many attempts at self-management of your weight.


The good news is that there is growing hope for treating obesity thanks to medical discoveries. Finding the proper combination may take trial and error, but you and your doctor can reclaim control of your health. A little amount of weight reduction may have far-reaching effects on obesity diseases, and adopting a healthy diet and way of life can pay dividends for the rest of your life.

Dr. Gaganjot Kaur
Internal Medicine
Meet The Doctor
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