Obesity in the United States is a major health issue, resulting in numerous diseases, specifically increased risk of certain types of cancer, coronary artery disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, as well as significant increase in early mortality and economic costs. While many industrialized countries have experienced similar increases, obesity rates in the United States are the highest in the world.
With the latest data from the NHANES showing that 39.6 percent of adults and 18.5 percent of children ages 2 to 19 in America have obesity, the State of Obesity report noted that “these are the highest rates ever documented by NHANES.”
Obesity is a medical condition that occurs when a person carries excess weight or body fat that might affect their health. A doctor will usually suggest that a person has obesity if they have a high body mass index.
It is not just a weight problem: it can have serious effects on a person’s physical, metabolic and psychological health.
Being overweight or obese increases your chances of dying from hypertension, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, respiratory problems, dyslipidemia and endometrial, breast, prostate, and colon cancers. In-depth guides and practical advice about obesity are available from the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health.
Now read on to find out why obesity happens.
Consuming too many calories
When a person consumes more calories than they use as energy, their body will store the extra calories as fat. This can lead to excess weight and obesity.
Also, some types of foods are more likely to lead to weight gain, especially those that are high in fats and sugars.
Leading a sedentary lifestyle
The less a person moves around, the fewer calories they burn.
Not sleeping enough
When a person does not sleep enough, their body produces ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates appetite. At the same time, a lack of sleep also results in a lower production of leptin, a hormone that suppresses the appetite.
A team from the University of Barcelona published a study in the World Journal of Gastroenterology that provides clues as to how liquid fructose — a type of sugar — in beverages may alter lipid energy metabolism and lead to fatty liver and metabolic syndrome.
Many factors play a role in the development of obesity. Genetic traits can increase the risk in some people.
A healthful diet that contains plenty of fresh food, together with regular exercise, will reduce the risk of obesity in most people.