To some, being overweight or obese is a result of one or a combination of the following factors: genes, metabolism, behavior, environment, culture, and socioeconomic status. It is important to know that excess weight or obesity could be a symptom of underlying health problems. Being overweight also increases risk for many health problems. The following are some health conditions that can be exaggerated by being overweight.
Type 2 Diabetes
According to the International Diabetes Federation and World Health Organization people who are overweight or obese have a higher risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. Both have often been referred to as “diabesity.” To combat overweight and obesity and lower the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes one must eat healthy and be active.
High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is linked to overweight and obesity in several ways. Having a large body size may increase blood pressure because your heart needs to pump harder to supply blood to all your cells. Excess fat may also damage your kidneys, which help regulate blood pressure.
Heart Disease and Strokes
Health problems include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and high blood sugar. In addition, excess weight may cause your heart to work harder. Overweight and obesity are known to increase blood pressure, the leading cause of strokes.
Gaining weight as an adult increases the risk for several cancers. Human cancer statistics show that when overweight and obese people cancer experience worse symptoms, faster cancer cell growth, and that the cancer spreads faster than in people with lower body fat.
Sleep apnea and other sleep-disordered breathing are often associated with people who are overweight. A person who is overweight may have more fat stored around his or her neck. This may make the airway smaller, which can make breathing difficult or loud (because of snoring), or breathing may stop altogether for short periods of time. In addition, fat stored in the neck and throughout the body may produce substances that cause inflammation, a serious risk factor to sleep apnea.
Obesity increases the risk of diabetes and high blood pressure, the most common causes of chronic kidney disease. Recent studies suggest that even in the absence of these risks, obesity itself may promote chronic kidney disease and quicken its progress.
Pregnant women who are overweight are more likely to develop insulin resistance, high blood sugar, and high blood pressure as well as increases the risks associated with surgery and anesthesia, and severe obesity increases surgery time and blood loss. Gaining too much weight during pregnancy can have long-term effects for both mother and child. These effects include that the mother will be overweight or obese after the child is born. Another risk is that the baby may gain too much weight later as a child or as an adult.
So What Can You Do About It?
If you are overweight, you may be at increased risk for all of these health conditions. Keeping your body in proper condition requires supporting each of the 5 Pillars of Health. ilick here learn about each of these Pillars and how they work together to keep you healthy.
If you need help getting on track to a healthier, fuller life, attend a free dinner presentation to learn more about our Life in Motion Wellness Program!
If you are ready to take the next steps to becoming healthy but not sure where to start, why not schedule a Wellness Consultation with Dr. Jones? Dr. Jones will help you learn how to have a healthy, full life.