What is Obesity, & What are the Main Causes?

What is Obesity?

Obesity is the term used when we are extremely overweight and have a lot of body fat. Obesity is a common problem that is increasing dramatically all over the world.

Being overweight or obese increases the risk to develop chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers.

What Causes Obesity?

Putting it simply, most causes of obesity are a result of energy imbalance between the number of calories you eat and the amount of exercise you do. If you eat more calories than your body needs, and don’t exercise to burn them off, the extra energy is stored by the body as fat.

There are several factors that increase your risk for obesity. Some are unavoidable such as your age, your family history, race, ethnicity, and gender. Other risks are eating more than your body needs, a lack of exercise or physical activity, medical conditions such as an under-active thyroid gland, and certain medications.

What Problems Can Obesity Cause?

Being obese or overweight may increase the risk of health problems including Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, certain cancers, joint and back pain, and pregnancy problems. Obesity can affect your quality of life making it difficult to do the things you enjoy, and even lead to depression.

How can I tell if I weigh too much?

Knowing two numbers can help you understand your risk: your body mass index (BMI) score and your waist size.

BMI is a measure that you can use to find out if you are healthy weight for your height: You can use this BMI calculator to check if you are a healthy weight for your height.

For most adults, a BMI of

  • 18.5 to 24.9 means you are a healthy weight
  • 25 to 29.9 means you are overweight
  • 30 to 39.9 means you are obese
  • 40 or above means you are severely obese

An additional indicator of excess fat is to measure your waist size.

If your waist is over 40 inches for men, or 34 for women, it’s time to try to shed a bit of weight.

What can I do to get a healthy body weight?

We all know how hard it is to lose excess weight, and there is no quick fix for obesity. Losing weight takes time and commitment. The good news is that even a small amount of weight loss can improve your health. And once you start to see the benefits, it will make your journey that much easier!

An important tip:

Even losing a small amount of weight, such as 3% or more of your original body weight, and maintaining it, can significantly reduce your risk of developing obesity-related complications.

Ready to lower your weight? Here are some tips to help you succeed:

  • Gradually increase your physical activity and reduce screen time
  • Find out your daily calorie needs or goals with https://www.calculator.net/Calorie-calculator
  • Set realistic weight loss goals
  • Eat food with less saturated and trans fats and avoid added sugars
  • Eat more slowly and being mindful of what and when you are eating
  • Avoid situations where you know you may be tempted to overeat
  • Have between seven and nine hours of sleep a night – a lack of sleep can affect the hormones that control your appetite
  • Involve your family and friends with your weight loss efforts
  • Monitor your progress weigh yourself regularly and make a note of your weight in a diary
  • Get support from your healthcare provider or from your Dario coach

We recommend you consult weight loss counseling before starting a new diet or fitness plan.

Medical Disclaimer
The articles provided on this website are for informational purposes only. In addition, it is written for a generic audience and not a specific case; therefore, this information should not be used for diagnostic or medical treatment. This site does not attempt to replace the patient-physician relationship and fully recommends the reader to seek out the best care from his/her physician and/or diabetes educator.

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4148643/pdf/nihms618965.pdf
  2. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/obesity

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