What Is Obesity

Obesity is more than just a few extra pounds. It is the heavy accumulation of fat in your body to such a degree that it rapidly increases your risk of diseases that can damage your health and knock years off your life, such as heart disease and diabetes.

What Causes Obesity?

Obesity can be hereditary, so some people are at an increased risk. Genetic factors can affect appetite, the rate at which you burn energy (metabollic rate) and how the body stores fat. Examples of genetic diseases are polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and hypothyroidism. Even if your genes make weight gain more likely, it is not inevitable that you will be overweight.

Obesity develops from:

  • Over-Eating
  • Irregular Meals
  • Lack Of Daily Physical Activity

Our lifestyles have changed rapidly, with the ready availability of convenience foods and car journeys replacing walks to work and school. It is LIFESTYLE that makes weight gain more likely.

What Problems Can Obesity Cause?

Psychologically, being overweight can affect your body image and damage selfesteem. In some cases this can cause social anxiety and depression.

Common physical problems include:

  • Difficulties breathing
  • Difficulties walking or running
  • Increased sweating
  • Pain in the knees and back
  • Skin Problems
  • Gallstones

The following medical conditions are also more common in obese people than in those of normal weight.

  • High blood pressure
  • High colesterol
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Diseases related to hardening of the arteries such as heart attack and stroke (cardiovascular disease)
  • Some types of cancer

These conditions are often known as OBESITY – RELATED diseases and are some of the most common causes of death before the age of 75. This is why obesity increases your risk of mortality.

Do not ignore weight related issues that you feel have gone beyond your control. Take the first step to regaining control and consult your G.P.