Friday, 13 May 2011

The Domino Effect of Obesity

Do not let it get you in trouble!
According to the American Obesity Association, obesity causes at least 300,000 excess deaths each year in the United States and 100 billion dollars in health costs. Also, developing countries reported increasing rates of obesity due to improper eating patterns and unhealthy lifestyle choices.

In its simplest form, obesity could be defined as excess of body fat. But this simple definition could be a major joy-stealer over time. Obesity is associated with more than 30 medical conditions. It leads to a significant number of health problems and is even causing existing health problems to aggravate. Scientific evidence has proven a strong relationship between obesity and the top killer diseases of today.

Here is a list of most common diseases associated with obesity:
1. Diabetes
Diabetes is characterized by insufficient production of insulin hormone. Excess accumulated fat makes the body cells more resistant to insulin. This explains why overweight people later develop Diabetes. Similarly, those who have Diabetes aggravate their condition when they fail to manage their weight.

2. Congestive Heart Failure
Congestive Heart Failure is characterized by the lack of ability of the heart to pump sufficient volume of blood to the rest of the body. Fatty build-ups in the arteries can lead to this health condition or worsen it. Because of the fatty build-ups, the heart experiences greater difficulty to perform its function.

3. Heart Enlargement
When the heart muscles get overworked in pumping blood because of the fatty build-ups, the risks for heart enlargement increase.

4. Various Types of Cancer
Obesity increases the risk of cancer development by 25-33%. Obese person is likely to develop esophageal cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer, kidney cancer, endometrial cancer, and colon cancer. This is because excess fat can also act like endocrine gland. They may disrupt production of certain hormones, thus, triggering hormonal imbalance, which is a well-known cancer-factor.

5. Stroke
Improper or insufficient blood supply to brain cells results in stroke. Obesity entails problems on blood circulation which more likely pave way to occurrence of stroke.

6. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
The abnormal production of follicle stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone leads to formation of benign cysts in the ovary. Excess fat stimulates abnormal secretion of these two hormones, leading to polycystic ovarian syndrome.

7. Osteoarthritis
Excess weight tends to add on pressure on the joints. This leads to osteoarthritis or aggravates it. The patient with this condition who fails to maintain recommended weight will suffer from thorough inflammation and pain in joints.

Quick Facts About Obesity

1. Obesity increases the risk of breast cancer in men and women.

2. Obesity is strongly associated with cancer of the esophagus.

3. Obese women have three to four times the risk of endometrial cancer than women with lower BMI.

4. Obesity increases cardiovascular disease risk because of its effect on blood lipid levels.

5. Obesity is a major risk factor for heart attack.

6. Gallstones are common in overweight and obese persons.

7. Obesity decreases body resistance to harmful organisms.

8. Obesity is the most common factor of nonalcoholic steatophepatitis.

9. Obesity is associated with the development of osteoarthritis of the hand, hip, back, and knees.

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