Obesity by Doris Silva
Obesity is a condition where a person has accumulated so much body fat that it could negatively impact their health. According to the Centers for Disease and Control (CDC), they estimate that three-fourths of the American population will likely be overweight or obese by the year 2020. Their latest polls show more than one-third if U.S. adults are obese and seventeen percent of children and adolescents aged 2-19 years are overweight. Obesity causes many health conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and certain cancers. Medical care costs for obese Americans are very high. This is due to the chronic obesity-related medical conditions that arise from being overweight. Obesity is very common in the U.S. with more than 3 million cases per year. It’s usually self-treatable but can have lasting health conditions if not taken care of right away.
What is obesity?
Obesity is the condition of being grossly overweight. More than two-thirds (68.8 percent) of adults are overweight or obese. Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years. Childhood obesity is now the number one health concern among parents in the United States, topping drug abuse and smoking.
Who can be affected by obesity?
Ultimately anyone can be affected. Obesity can occur in anyone, doesn’t matter what age, color, or ethnicity you are.
The most common causes are genetic factors, lack of physical activity, unhealthy eating patterns, or a combination of these factors. Only in rare cases is being overweight caused by a medical condition such as a hormonal problem.
How do you know if you are obese?
Body mass index (BMI) is a calculation of height and weight. For many, BMI is an effective estimate of body fat. A BMI of 25-29.9 is overweight and any BMI higher is considered obese.
What are the symptoms of obesity?
There are many symptoms of obesity. You may experience fatigue, snoring, or have a pot belly. You might also have high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol or joint pain/disease. Along with these medical conditions, you may also encounter psychosocial problems such as low self-esteem, discrimination, and reduced quality of life. See a provider for more information.
How do you prevent obesity?
There are many ways to prevent obesity. Aiming for a healthy, balanced and varied diet is a great way to prevent it. Remember snacks and drinks should not be used as a reward. If snacks are eaten, they should be healthy snacks such as fruits or vegetables. Also, it is important to exercise. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, park farther away, encourage your kids to go outdoors and play. Limit the time you spend sitting doing sedentary activities. You should get at least 30 minutes of exercise per day.
Did you know?
According to the CDC, obesity affects some groups more than others. Non-Hispanic blacks have the highest rate of obesity (48.1%) followed by Hispanics (42.5%), non-Hispanic whites (34.5%), and non-Hispanic Asians (11.7%). Obesity is higher among middle age adults age 40-59 years (40.2%) and older adults age 60 and over (37.0%) than among younger adults age 20–39 (32.3%).
The information provided is for general interest only and should not be misconstrued as a diagnosis, prognosis or treatment recommendation. This information does not in any way constitute the practice of medicine, or any other health care profession. Readers are directed to consult their health care provider regarding their specific health situation. Marque Medical is not liable for any action taken by a reader based upon this information.