Causes of Obesity and How To Treat It

by | Jun 3, 2021 | Health, Nutrition, Planning | 0 comments

Causes of obesity and how to treat it

Obesity

Every year, along with spring and warm weather, the topic of overweight (especially getting rid of it) becomes relevant.

While aesthetics may be the primary reason for many to get rid of excess fat, not everyone knows we should do primarily it to improve health.

Unfortunately, being overweight is a progressive health problem worldwide, and they also included obese people in the Covid-19 risk group for coronavirus disease.

In this article, we explain

  • what obesity is;
  • the role of diet in gaining excess weight;
  • how obesity can negatively affect a person’s health;
  • what role the body mass index plays in its diagnosis;
  • as well as address other important issues.

Can excess fat help you

Obesity, or adiposity, is a significant increase in weight that is a disease.

Of course, the starting point for each is different, considering his constitution (a set of physiological and anatomical features that determine the response to environmental exposure): asthenic, normosthenic, hypersteneic.

The body is physiologically cunning and has revealed that the best way to store energy is as triglycerides (lipids), which it “packs” into adipocytes or fat cells.

You might think that fat is a good thing, and if a worse day comes, it will help us survive, which was certainly the case in ancient times, when the amount of calories people ate in terms of lifestyle was also consumed.

However, over time, studies have found that each adipocyte is highly metabolically active.

And these fat cells produce different substances, inflammatory mediators – specific substances that might develop inflammation in the body.

This means that the more fat cells you have, the greater the risk of developing an inflammatory reaction in various organs, such as the liver.

Can excess fat help you

Of course, we must understand that the longer nothing is done for the benefit of health, the greater the risk of complications.

And ultimately it can lead to stroke, heart attack, diabetes, oncology, and so on.

Age also has a role to play: a person between the ages of 19 and 50 will not have the same risks under the same conditions.

One indicator that helps to diagnose obesity is the body mass index (BMI), which is calculated: weight (kg) divided by height (m)2, for example 64 (kg) versus 1.72 (m)2 is approximately 21.6.

BMI

If the BMI is below 18.5, the weight is insufficient. If it is between 25 and 29.99, the weight is increased. If it is above 30, it shows obesity. However, BMI may not be the key indicator of obesity in all cases.

If a person is not engaged in something specific and his or her body weight increases directly at the expense of fat, the body mass index can be a relatively accurate measurement for screening to assess the general condition of the body.

For example, a patient may notice that fat has accumulated in the winter and therefore weight, which will be a sign that something is wrong.

BMI will not always be very high, it may be below, but close enough to the limit of obesity, for example, from 22 to 28, so a person is overweight.

BMI will not be a completely accurate marker for a specific population group, including people with “big bones” and athletes who are serious about weightlifting, because high muscle mass will not be the same as fat mass.

This means that diagnostics can be individualized.

For example, lumbar circumference and other examinations, which allow in-depth examination of all body systems, we can also use instrumental examinations for more accurate diagnostics.

It is also important to consider existing and comorbidities and family history in diagnosis.

Diagnosis of being obese

Body mass index is also one indicator that can rank a person in the risk group of Covid-19 coronavirus disease, which is still relevant today.

Although BMI may not be an accurate indicator of obesity in all cases, it is one marker. As I mentioned before, the more of these fat cells – adipocytes – the greater the chance of developing inflammation in any body system.

This means that under such conditions, any other disease can pose a higher risk to humans – the disease can develop more severely, with greater complications and also statistically with a worse prognosis.

Of course, this does not mean that all obese people will have it, but statistically the risk is higher than for a physically active and healthy person.

If a person is diagnosed with obesity, it is important to remember that excess weight should not be lost quickly. This can also be dangerous.

Excess weight

First, the body is very malevolent and if you try to lose weight quick with fasting, in the future it will associate any longer not eating with hunger.

Then there may be a situation where a person initially loses 15 kilograms, but then gains new 20 kilograms instead. The basal metabolism also changes.

Second, rapid, uncontrolled weight loss can cause serious changes in various tissues and lead to fatal consequences.

Therefore, you should not lose over two to four kilograms a month, but do it regularly. In addition, it has long been shown that an isolated diet plays a relatively minor role if adequate exercise does not supplement it.

The question is what is a normal body mass index – if a person feels good in his weight, there is a regular place in his life for physical activity and the weight corresponds to his lifestyle, it does not matter what the BMI is, of course, if it is between 18.5 and 25.

I recommend everyone to monitor their weight episodically, including BMI,

I recommend everyone to monitor their weight episodically, including BMI, sonograph once a year and check a complete blood count, lipidogram (different cholesterol fractions), glucose to see if everything is really within normal limits.

Everyone should get used to the fact that they should regularly monitor their own health and changes, and in case of uncertainty or changes, it is mandatory to consult a doctor.

By the way, there may be another extreme, when a person is not obese, but unexplained weight loss, which can also be very dangerous.

That is why it is advisable to always follow the weight dynamics. If you have a health problem, your doctor will give you instructions on how to do it all so that you do not have to deal with serious consequences later.

We should note here that regular self-starting health check-ups are important if we want to reduce the potential effects of obesity.

Statistics in the West are with negative dynamics, for several reasons, including the pandemic does not improve the situation at all, but contributes to even greater problems.

You can’t count on someone to come and take you by the hand and take them to a doctor who will tell you what to do.

Also, there are people waiting for doctors to give us a miracle pill and everything will work out – we won’t have to exercise or eat properly.

If the tablet can not be given, then doctors are bad, because elsewhere in the world there are already such tablets. Your doctor can help, but remember to go to the doctor.

Obesity has a multisystemic effect

Undoubtedly, obesity affects the action of hormones, which can be dangerous to human health. People with obesity have insulin resistance.

This means that more insulin is released to maintain normal blood sugar levels.

maintain normal blood sugar levels

Increased insulin levels and obesity reinforce each other – the more insulin, as it contributes to the progression of obesity and makes it harder to lose extra pounds.

Overweight and insulin resistance also contribute to liver obesity and increase cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which further impair the action of insulin on its target receptors. These changes can pose an even more serious threat to health.

As for any abnormalities in normal health, each case is, of course, individual, but when outlining the consequences of normal hormonal dysfunction, the more severe the insulin resistance, the more severe the complications, which can be fatal.

For example, sleep apnea may develop – a person sleeps and stops breathing for a while.

This can be dangerous and only worsens the condition. Lipids or fats can build up in the blood vessels and cause atherosclerotic changes, which can also lead to thrombosis, which can be fatal.

The clinical picture can be very broad: asymptomatic and relatively harmless at a younger age, but the longer and more severe the insulin resistance, the more dramatic the consequences.

We should note that some consequences may be irreversible, but lifestyle changes and medications will help to stabilize health.

atherosclerosis

If atherosclerosis develops, to some extent we can stabilize the plaques (lipid deposits in the arteries) with both medication and, to a lesser extent, dietary principles, but we can say that atherosclerosis is to some extent an irreversible process.

We can stabilize it, we can improve it, but of course we cannot get new blood vessels.

And if there is this damage to the blood vessels, depending on its degree, the supply of oxygen to the relevant organs is disrupted and they are damaged.

Although it would be the responsibility of everyone to have a general health check every year to see if everything is within the norm, only a few do.

However, if you are active and eating properly, but your weight continues to grow, besides the disproportionate calories consumed, this will be one reason you should check your hormone levels.

For example, it should be checked for increased cortisol release, which may contribute to obesity. You need to check what’s going on with your thyroid gland. If its function is altered, it can also lead to weight gain.

If obesity could be related to our lifestyle, then we need to determine insulin levels, calculate its ratio of glucose, and can determine the C peptide, which is a more stable indicator and shows insulin secretion.

Then we can already see if the insulin is released in a disproportionate amount, which shows the above-mentioned insulin resistance or even diabetes or prediabetes.

If there is this change, there is a much higher risk of developing complications –

  • high cholesterol;
  • cardiovascular disease;
  • kidney damage;
  • etc.

It is a multisystem effect. If a person is obese, it is mandatory to check their blood sugar level, because often an obese person already has prediabetes, where drug treatment is most often needed, apart from lifestyle changes.

Eating habits – one of the main causes of obesity

We base weight gain on excess calories, regardless of how they are absorbed.

Eating habits - one of the main causes of obesity

It also means that eating habits are one of the major reasons for gaining excess weight, however, additional influencing factors may include:

  • antidepressant use;
  • hormonal changes;
  • stress;
  • poor sleep;
  • and lack of physical activity.

It is also important to drink enough water. Insufficient fluid intake may not contribute to the accumulation of excess weight, but it can prevent the loss of excess weight.

Asked what eating habits can help to avoid gaining excess weight and help get rid of the existing extra pounds that a person needs to absorb all the nutrients.

A complete diet means –

  • valuable;
  • healthy;
  • low in sugar;
  • salt;
  • saturated fat;
  • industrially processed trans fats, which can be hidden, for example, in muffins.

We must understand that we ourselves can create such fats at home by cooking food at too high a temperature and frying it, possibly by cooking something else in the same pan, for example, frying an omelette in a pan with previously baked meatballs.

It is also desirable to eat fewer products with E substances – all E substances are not bad, but I always say: The less E substances, the better.

It is also desirable to include more products of local origin in the diet – berries in summer, vegetables in autumn, etc.

The most important products in the daily diet are vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean meat, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, cheese, legumes.

These products more or less contain a variety of vitamins

These products more or less contain a variety of vitamins, minerals, fiber and other biologically active substances that help ensure our body’s metabolic processes and good health.

Delicacies such as chips, salted nuts, french fries, chocolate bars, crackers, etc. should also be less common.

Of course, you can eat something like this from time to time, but it shouldn’t be every day. We should also avoid sweetened drinks and yoghurts, as they also contain a lot of sugar.

Take the product, look at its label and look for the word “sugar”. It will surprise you yourself how much sugar will contain “healthy yogurt” with fruit.

And we should eat the above products according to their needs, influenced by metabolism, habits (sedentary or active lifestyle).

It is important to keep in mind that physical activity is very important if we want to get rid of extra pounds and be healthy. And, the more muscle mass, the more calories we consume during the day.

It is important to remember that sports need to be done with the mind, especially if the household has been around for a long time, to start wisely, i.e. a moderate load is recommended – a long fast walk with or without sticks.

Doctors recommend this type of exercise to overweight or obese people.

Doctors recommend this type of exercise to overweight or obese people. Cycling will also be suitable, but it will definitely not be running.

If, however, you are ready to run, I recommend running in moderation, i.e. 10 kilometers a week and without heavy breathing.

You should definitely not forget about strength exercises / workouts – we should do them at least two or three times a week, because this type of training helps maintain muscle mass and, as mentioned above, muscle mass is also important for weight loss.

If we do regular training, it does not mean that we can eat a lot. Everything must always be adapted to your needs.

For weight loss, if a person has performed various types of analysis, where everything is within the normal range, he is doing everything possible to lose weight, but all this is unsuccessful, then it may be necessary to visit a psychotherapist, because there may also be psycho-emotional problems.

For obesity, the body mass index is not always fully reliable.

This is because muscle is heavier than fat and because a person has more muscle mass, especially in athletes, the higher the body mass index, which can be a false indication of obesity.

In contrast, waist circumference can be an indicator of obesity. The optimal waist for a woman is up to 80 centimeters, but for a man – up to 94 centimeters.

If, for example, a man is obese when calculating BMI and has a waist circumference of 100 centimeters, he is at risk of developing, for example, cardiovascular disease.

And if someone with a family history of such diseases appears, and the man is indeed obese, the risk increases, obesity can increase the risk of the following diseases: cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and liver obesity, including joint problems.

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