things to know about obesity

things to know about obesity
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There have never been so many obese people on the planet as there are now. Over an estimated 600 million people are obese, according to the World Health Organization. The knee-jerk reaction is to blame fast food and a sedentary lifestyle. But what are the true causes of obesity? How is obesity defined? Which countries have the highest rates of obesity? What are the health risks? Read on to find out! There are few things to know about obesity.

  • Body mass index (BMI) is key to determining whether you’re carrying extra weight or not. To calculate your BMI, you need to know two things: your weight and your height. BMI is not a perfect system. It may not apply to everyone, such as pregnant women and professional athletes.In general, it’s better to see your doctor to determine if you need to lose weight.
  • A healthy adult has a body mass index between 18.5 and 24.9. A BMI below this number is considered underweight and too thin. A BMI above this number is considered overweight (BMI between 25 and 29.9) or obese (BMI of 30 or higher).
  • Because there can be significant weight differences between one obese person and another, obese people can be classified into subgroups.Those with a BMI between 30 and 34.9 are in class 1, or moderately obese. They are more likely to develop certain diseases than someone with a healthy weight.A man or a woman with a BMI between 35 and 39.9 is considered to be in class 2, or obese. At this stage, the obesity is severe and it is crucial to lose weight.Lastly, people who are morbidly obese have a BMI of 40 or higher (class 3 obesity). They absolutely must lose weight or their life expectancy could be considerably shorter. An increasing number of people are falling into this subcategory.
  • To get a better idea of what the percentages and statistics on BMI really mean, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides the following example.To be healthy, a person who stands 5 ft. 9 in. (175 cm) must weigh between 125 and 168 pounds (between 56.7 and 76.2 kg). They are considered overweight once they reach 169 pounds (76.7 kg) and obese at 203 pounds (92 kg) or higher.
  • Waist circumference is another way to determine if someone is obese or overweight and if they have extra belly fat.In concrete terms, for women, abdominal obesity is defined as 35 inches or more (88.9 cm), whereas for men, it is defined as 40 inches or more (101 cm).To avoid health problems, it’s best to keep your waist size below these numbers. Too much belly fat is particularly harmful to the human body.
  • To calculate children’s weight, doctors tend to use growth charts in addition to body mass index. Unlike BMI, the charts also take into consideration a child’s age and gender. Developed by the World Health Organization, the growth charts are based on percentiles.For instance, a child with a 95th percentile weight means that 95% of children their age and gender have a similar or lower weight and only 5% of children have a higher weight.A child is considered to have a normal or healthy weight if they fall between the 5th and 84th percentile. An overweight girl or boy will fall between the 85th and 94th percentile, whereas an obese child will be in the 95th percentile or higher.
  • Contrary to what you might think, the United States is not the No. 1 country for obesity.According to a world map created by the Telegraph, American Samoa has the highest percentage of obesity. In this U.S. unincorporated territory in the South Pacific, 74.6% of the population is considered obese. Nauru and the Cook Islands are in second and third place, respectively. The United States is 18th, just behind Egypt. Canada does not rank in the top 20.Conversely, the three countries with the lowest percentages of obesity are Ethiopia, Bangladesh, and Nepal.
  • Even if the United States doesn’t rank among the top 3 countries with the highest percentage of obesity, the situation is still troubling to say the least.In fact, 38% of Americans are obese. 5% of women and 10% of men are morbidly obese. Roughly 17% of adolescents have a body mass index of 30 or higher.According to different projections, the situation is not expected to improve in the coming years. By 2030, between 42% and 44% of Americans will be obese.
  • It’s simple—obesity is caused by an imbalance between the number of calories consumed and the number of calories burned.Several decades ago, before the invention of fitness centres, few people were obese because many of them had “physical” jobs. For seven or eight hours a day, they were physically active in the fields or in factories.Today, less than 20% of jobs require employees to do at least moderate physical activity to accomplish their tasks. According to the study, Trends over 5 Decades in U.S. Occupation-Related Physical Activity and Their Associations with Obesity, published in May 2011, this percentage was nearly 50% in 1960.
  • Unfortunately, many people with sedentary jobs aren’t active in the evening after work either. They drive home and, once there, watch TV or fiddle around on their smartphones. In addition, about 80% of Americans are not meeting aerobic and muscle strengthening recommendations, according to a press release from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.According to an article published online in May 2011, people burn 120 to 140 fewer calories a day than they did half a century ago.
  • The environment cannot be overlooked when it comes to understanding why some people have weight issues, even though it may not be the primary cause of obesity in many cases.For instance, a city with no bike lanes and no safe place to park your bike is sure to discourage residents from pedalling to work. Instead, they’ll turn to other forms of transportation, like their cars.
  • Yes, genetics can explain why some people are obese. However, according to the Harvard School of Public Health, the recent obesity epidemic cannot be caused by genes alone—the epidemic is simply too recent and has spread too rapidly.In addition, people with obesity genes would not necessarily become obese if they adopted a healthy lifestyle. In other words, obesity genes do not automatically condemn people to being obese for the rest of their lives.
  • Even though smoking during pregnancy can slow the rate of fetal growth, studies have also shown that children whose mothers smoke during pregnancy are 50% more likely to be obese during childhood.
  • Along with a sedentary lifestyle, diet is one of the main causes of obesity. The popularity of fast food and sugar-sweetened beverages has led to a worldwide increase in the number of people who are obese.During childhood, for instance, consuming large amounts of fruit juice is associated with an increase in body mass index.People have also increased their portion sizes since the 1970s, increasing the number of calories consumed on a daily basis.
  • A lack of sleep can lead to weight gain. In a 2006 study entitled Association between reduced sleep and weight gain in women, researchers followed a group of women for 16 years. They found that women who slept less than five hours a night tended to gain more weight than those who slept seven hours a night.When you don’t get enough sleep, you tend to be hungrier the next day. If you’re awake for more hours, you also have more time to eat. And, even if you have more spare time, you may not use it to be more active. In fact, it’s often the opposite. Fatigue can discourage you from working out or going to the gym.
  • One of the most common consequences of obesity is developing type 2 diabetes.Not surprisingly, 90% of diabetics have weight issues, according to the World Health Organization.
  • Some obese people have chronic inflammation that can, over time, damage their DNA and, in turn, lead to cancer in several areas of the body, such as the esophagus and liver, according to the National Cancer Institute.In addition, according to Global burden of cancer attributable to high body-mass index in 2012: a population-based study, published in 2015, 3.6% of all new cancer cases diagnosed in 2012 were attributable to excess BMI.
  • Obesity is directly associated with the development of heart disease. Being overweight increases your risk of heart disease by 45%, according to the 2012 study entitled Association of overweight with increased risk of coronary heart disease partly independent of blood pressure and cholesterol levels: a meta-analysis of 21 cohort studies including more than 300 000 persons.
  • Osteoporosis, especially in the knees and hips, is common in people who are obese. Their bones and joints have to support extra weight, which can weaken them.In many men and women, obesity also causes back pain and other chronic pain issues.
  • Obesity puts a major burden on your health. In addition to the health issues mentioned in this article, obese people are more likely to suffer from depression, respiratory problems like asthma, infertility, memory problems, high blood pressure, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.


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