Obesity problem and Prevention of Obesity

Obesity: A Complex Disease

Obesity is a hugely complex disease that involves an abnormally large amount of body fat. It is frequently defined simply as an abnormal or excessive accumulation of fat within the adipose tissue, to the point where an individual's health may be jeopardized (Flier, 2004).

The Impact of Weight Distribution

Furthermore, being extremely obese means that a person is more prone to experience health difficulties due to their weight. This is because the underlying disease is a result of the unappealing developing energy balance together with weight growth.

Furthermore, obese people differ in both the amount of excess acquired fat and the spatial distribution of this fat throughout their bodies. Besides, the risks accompanying obesity are influenced by the fat distribution that has been stimulated by weight gain. For instance, the persons with the abdominal distribution of fat are at an increased risk as compared to individuals with the less severe distribution of fat that is peripherally and more evenly distributed about the body (Flier, 2004 and Worthington & Gilbert, 2012).

Potential Health Complications

Consequently, obese individuals are more prospective to develop other potentially critical health snags comprising of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, stroke, osteoarthritis, cardiovascular disease, breathing disorders that incorporate sleep apnea, gynecological complications that encompass irregular periods and infertility, non-alcoholic fatty liver disorder, sexual health complications like erectile dysfunction, metabolic syndromes, and cancer that encompass cancer of the cervix, uterus, breast, ovaries, endometrium, liver, rectum, colon, esophagus, prostate, kidney, gallbladder and pancreas.

The Etiology of Obesity

While there exist genetic, hormonal and behavioral impacts on body weight, the main cause of obesity is inactivity, eating habits, and unhealthy diet. Generally, obesity transpires when a person takes in extra calories than that which they burn through conventional daily activities and physical exercise. These extra calories are then stored by the body as fat and when accumulated excessively then obesity ensues. Besides, medical causes could at other times result in obesity. Such causes may include Cushing’s syndrome and Prader-Willi syndrome alongside other disorders and complications like arthritis that reduce activity. These disorders, however, are rare and are therefore regarded as trivial causes (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2002).

Contributing Factors and Causes

The combination of contributing factors and causes that frequently result in obesity encompass genetics, certain medications, age, economic and social issues, sleep, quitting smoking, pregnancy, family lifestyle, unhealthy diet, and inactivity. Firstly, a person’s gene could impact the quantity of body fat which the person stores alongside the region of fat distribution. Moreover, genetics could influence the efficiency of a person’s body converting food to energy besides the manner in which that body consumes the calories when exercising.

Similarly, certain medications could result in weight gain when an individual does not compensate through activity or diet. Such medications incorporate beta blockers, steroids, anti-seizure medications, some antidepressants, antipsychotic and diabetes medications. Furthermore, quitting smoking frequently is accompanied by weight gain which progressively can lead to obesity although it is of greater benefit than abiding to smoke.

Moreover, obesity can transpire at any age including in young kids. However, as a person ages, hormonal alterations accompanied with a reduced active lifestyle could intensify their risk of obesity. Additionally, the intensity of muscle in a person’s body tends to decline with age. The reduced muscle mass results in a decline in medication. These alterations lower the calorie needs too and could make it harder to restrain excess weight. Thus, when such individuals become less physically active and do not consciously regulate what they consume, then they will probably gain weight (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2002).

Additionally, studies have interrelated economic and social aspects to obesity. Evading obesity, for instance, is strenuous when a person has no safe exercising area. Likewise, a person might not have been coached the healthy techniques of cooking or they may lack the money to purchase healthier foods. Moreover, the people that a person spends time with could impact their weight as they tend to participate in similar activities. This insinuates that a person is increasingly probable to be obese when that person has obese relatives or friends.

Also, obesity in women can ensue due to pregnancy since during pregnancy their weight essentially increases and for some women it becomes difficult to shed off the weight even after delivery (Flier, 2004). Similarly, Flier (2004) adds that inadequate or excessive sleep could ensue hormone alterations that intensify a person’s appetite. This could cause a person to crave foods that are high in carbohydrates and calories which could aid in weight gain.

Similarly, family lifestyles which have made obesity tend to clutch in families. This is not due to genetics rather it is due to the shared similar activity and eating habits. Thus, individuals with a parent or parents with obesity have an increased risk of obesity. Besides, a sedentary lifestyle could make an individual take in extra calories daily than they can burn. Also, a high-calorie diet that is lacking in vegetables and fruits, filled with fast food and overloaded with high-calorie drinks alongside oversized portions ensues to weight gain. This weight gain, when accompanied by reduced activity rate, transpires to excessive obesity.

Prevention of Obesity

As already discussed, it is evident that eating habits and the degree of activeness tend to lead to weight gain, which progresses to obesity. This, therefore, implies that monitoring feeding habits and the extent of activeness can aid in the prevention of obesity. Firstly, a consistent level of activeness could aid an individual to burn a good quantity of calories and reduce the extent of fat accumulation. Besides, eating habits have a major impact on evading obesity. Consuming a healthy diet with the right level of calories could warrant an individual taking in the acceptable quantity of calories based on their age, energy demand, and metabolic rate.

Thus, an individual should visit a doctor and be assisted in determining what shall constitute the healthy diet that suits them. The recommended diet should have vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and foods with moderate calorie content and all in the right portion in order to control weight gain and inhibit obesity. The individual also needs to monitor their weight and Body Mass Index (BMI) and ensure that they are within the acceptable range which should not be out of the ideal body weight level. To achieve the prevention of obesity, there is a need for behavior alteration so as to enable the individual to make adequate transformations for his/her activity and eating habits.

Prevention of obesity is moreover significant after an obesity treatment because it is especially conventional to gain weight regardless of the treatment method employed. Thus, for such individuals, it is important that they utilize some of the best practices to abet weight gain through participation in regular exercise activity which can be executed an hour daily. Additionally, such individuals could overcome obesity by studying their conditions, setting pragmatic goals, adhering to their treatment plan and medication, enlisting support, keeping activity records, identifying and dodging food triggers, and lastly being consistent with their commitment to controlling their weight.

Treatment of Obesity

The treatment of obesity has a similar goal to its prevention, which encompasses being within a healthy weight. The treatment of obesity utilizes tools that contain behavior change, weight loss surgery, weight loss medications, dietary changes alongside activity and exercise. These treatment tools suit individuals based on the extent of obesity, overall health, and their cooperation to partake in their weight-loss plan.

Firstly, the behavior change is a program that aids an individual in executing a lifestyle modification that shall empower them to lose weight and manage it within a healthy range. This treatment commences by identifying the factors that resulted in obesity. It encompasses counseling and support groups. The counseling is aimed at addressing behavioral and emotional concerns. The counseling and support groups operate simultaneously in enabling individuals to monitor their diet, activity, and even comprehend their eating triggers.

Similarly, weight-loss surgery is an option that limits the quantity of food that an individual is capable of eating comfortably or reducing the assimilation of calorie and food. Though this option provides the best opportunity for weight loss, it could present severe risks (Worthington & Gilbert, 2012). Thus, it could be regarded as the last option after unsuccessful execution of the other options in losing weight. It comprises gastric bypass operation, gastric sleeve, biliopancreatic diversion, and laparoscopic variable gastric banding.

Equally, weight-loss medication could assist in weight loss and has to be accompanied by behavior, diet, and exercise modification. This option is suitable for individuals with sleep apnea, hypertension, or diabetes. Prior to picking a medication, the doctor has to consider a patient’s health history alongside the probable side effects. The commonly prescribed medications incorporate liraglutide, lorcaserin, topiramate and phentermine, naltrexone and bupropion, and orlistat. However, this option does not work for everyone and its effect could degenerate over time.

Furthermore, dietary changes are significant in overcoming obesity through calorie reduction and implementing healthier feeding habits. The safest manner of weight loss is the steady, slow, and long-term weight loss which keeps obesity off permanently. Surprisingly there is no best diet for weight loss and therefore, it is vital to pick a diet that will work for you that is based on the recommended diet that was already discussed. The dietary modification treatment encompasses cutting calories, implementing healthier choices, meal replacement, restricting specific foods, and feeling satisfied on less (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2002).

Besides, activity and exercise at an increased level is significant in obesity treatment. Worthington (2012) portrays that the majority of individuals who partake in regular exercise are capable of maintaining their weight loss even by simple walking for a period exceeding a year. The simple techniques of boosting an individual’s activity level enmesh exercise and to keep moving (Worthington & Gilbert, 2012). The latter is suitable for individuals who prefer burning calories beyond the customary aerobic exercise by executing it throughout the day. The customary aerobic is the effective method of burning calories and shedding extra weight. An obese person demands a minimum of 150 minutes weekly moderate-intensity bodily activity. This duration should be gradually increased as the individual’s fitness and endurance improve so as to accomplish heftier weight loss.


Flier, J. S. (2004). Obesity wars: molecular progress confronts an expanding epidemic. Cell, 116(2), 337-350.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, (2002). The Practical Guide Identification, Evaluation, and Treatment of Overweight and Obesity in Adults. (1st ed., pp. 1-32). National Institute of Health. Retrieved from https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/files/docs/guidelines/prctgd_c.pdf

Worthington, P. & Gilbert, K. (2012). Parenteral Nutrition. Journal of Infusion Nursing, 35(1), 52-64. http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/nan.0b013e31823b98ef

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