Friday, September 16, 2011

Obesity: The Disturbing Facts

Obesity is defined as excess total body fat, and is usually seen in people who weight 20% or more over their normal body weight. BMI or body mass index is the most common method of measuring for obesity. A BMI of 25 to 29.9 shows a person to be overweight, and if the measurement reaches 30 or higher, the person is considered obese. Morbid obesity is when a person's BMI is 40 or higher and they are 50% or more above their normal weight.

It is common knowledge that consuming more calories than we burn in a day can lead to obesity, but there are other obesity facts that should be considered.

• Age is the leading factor in obesity. As person ages, their body metabolism lowers, which can result in weight gain in later years if the person is still maintaining the same diet and exercise routine as they did when they were younger.

• Gender is another major factor in obesity. Women have a higher percentage of obesity than men. A women's metabolism is lower than a man's, which means they burn less calories per activity than a man does. In later years when a woman becomes menopausal, their metabolism slows down causing significant weight gain postmenopausal.

• Genetics is an obesity fact whether it's being overweight or thin. Children of biological parents tend to adapt to the same weight and body type as their parents. Studies have shown that a child of an overweight mother has a 75% chance of being overweight as well. The same is true of a child of a thin mother; they also have a 75% chance of being thin.

• Environment also plays a role in obesity. In many cases, a person's environment plays a huge role in whether a person eats and exercises right. If a person is surrounded with other people who do not exercise or eat properly, they tend to follow the same patterns.

• Physical exercise tends to lower a person appetite while raising their metabolism. A person who tends to be inactive has a lower metabolism, and has a larger appetite. Research has also shown that many inactive people tend to eat out of boredom instead of hunger, and is more common in women. In the last 20 year, obesity has increased dramatically due to decrease of physical activity of the general public. Many experts blame this on the electronic generation, where children over the past 20 years have been raised by electronics that are more appealing than simply playing outside. This behavior in children can lead to obesity and will follow them into adulthood.

• Psychology also plays a role in influencing a person activities and eating habits. A person often eats to fill the boredom or in response to negative feeling of sadness or anger. Women tend to overeat during menopause as their hormone levels become imbalanced and they suffer from moments of depression.

• Illnesses such as hypothyroidism can also lead to obesity, which is an over active thyroid that tends to slow a person's metabolism.

• Medications such as steroids and antidepressants can also cause a person to gain weight.

Is Obesity a Disease -Up to date information on obesity and illness.

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