Obesity or being overweight is associated with over 50 different medical conditions.
Being overweight or obese isn’t a cosmetic problem.
What are the risks of being overweight or obese?
Health risk of obesity
If you are overweight or obese you are at risk of developing the following diseases:
- Coronary heart disease
- High blood pressure
- High blood cholesterol
- Type 2 diabetes
- Gallbladder disease
- Sleep apnea and breathing problems
- Some cancers
- ● Endometrial
- ● Breast
- ● Prostate
- ● Colon
Let us look at the individual obesity related risk factors
Coronary Heart Disease
Studies have shown that obesity increases the risk for coronary heart disease (CHD). Obesity also can lead to heart failure. This is a serious condition in which your heart can’t pump enough blood to meet your body’s needs.
High Blood Pressure
Your chances of having high blood pressure are greater if you’re overweight or obese.
Being overweight or obese can lead to atherosclerosis (buildup of plaque in your arteries) Atherosclerosis leads to narrow arteries, especially the carotids or other arteries supplying blood to the brain. Eventually, an area of plaque can rupture, causing a blood clot to form. The risk of having a stroke rises as BMI increases.
Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes is a disease in which the body’s blood glucose, or blood sugar, level is too high. Normally, the body breaks down food into glucose and then carries it to cells throughout the body. The cells use a hormone called insulin to turn the glucose into energy.
In type 2 diabetes, the body’s cells don’t use insulin properly as the cells become “resistant” to the actions of insulin. At first, the body reacts by making more insulin. Over time, however, the body can’t make enough insulin to control its blood sugar level leading to pre-diabetes, or diabetes. Even when the body is able to keep the blood sugars under control, there are many negative side effects of high insulin levels due to insulin resistance.
What is causing the weight gain, especially around the belly and upper part of the body?
Insulin resistance can caused weight gain around the tummy and upper body. Insulin resistance can also cause metabolic starvation. Diabetes is a leading cause of early death, CHD, stroke, kidney disease, and blindness. Most people who have type 2 diabetes are overweight.
CHECK IF YOU ARE INSULIN RESISTANT WITH THE INSULIN RESISTANCE CALCULATOR!
Abnormal lipids or cholesterol problems
If you’re overweight or obese, you’re at increased risk of having abnormal levels of blood fats. These include high levels of triglycerides and LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and low levels of HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
You can develop any one of these risk factors by itself, but they tend to occur together.
What is metabolic syndrome?
You will be considered to have metabolic syndrome if you have at least three of the following risk factors:
- A large waistline. This is called abdominal obesity or “having an apple shape.” Having extra fat in the waist area is a greater risk factor for CHD than having extra fat in other parts of the body, such as on the hips.
- A higher than normal triglyceride level (or you’re on medicine to treat high triglycerides).
- A lower than normal HDL cholesterol level (or you’re on medicine to treat low HDL cholesterol).
- Higher than normal blood pressure (or you’re on medicine to treat high blood pressure).
- Higher than normal fasting blood sugar (or you’re on medicine to treat diabetes).
Being overweight or obese raises your risk for many gastrointestinal and genitourinary cancers including colon, breast, endometrial, and gallbladder cancers.
Osteoarthritis is a common joint problem of the knees, hips, and lower back that is made significantly worse due to obesity. Extra weight can put more pressure and wear on joints, causing pain.
Sleep apnea is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep. A person who has sleep apnea may have more fat stored around the neck. This can narrow the airway, making it hard to breathe.
Obesity Hypoventilation Syndrome
Obesity hypoventilation syndrome (OHS) is a breathing disorder where poor breathing due to obesity results in too much carbon dioxide (hypoventilation) and too little oxygen in the blood (hypoxemia).
OHS can lead to serious health problems and may even cause death.
Obesity can cause menstrual issues and infertility in women as insulin resistance in women can lead to poly cystic ovarian syndrome.
People who are overweight or obese are at increased risk of having gallstones. Also, being overweight may result in an enlarged gallbladder that doesn’t work well.
Besides being overweight or obese, here are other risk factors to consider —
■ Cigarette smoking
■ High blood pressure (hypertension)
■ High LDL-cholesterol (“bad” cholesterol)
■ Low HDL-cholesterol (“good” cholesterol)
■ High triglycerides
■ High blood glucose (sugar)
■ Family history of premature heart disease
■ Physical inactivity
Affordable Care Act and Obesity
Did you know that the new Affordable Care Act Passed in September, 2010 mandates all insurances, including Medicare, to provide full insurance coverage for obesity screening and treatment for all adults without copays or deductibles?
How Can W8MD Medical Weight Loss Centers Help?
With a fellowship training in Obesity Medicine, and extensive experience in dealing with the metabolic and nutritional aspects of health and weight gain, W8MD weight loss physicians are uniquely qualified in providing proper guidance on nutrition and wellness. As we are one of the very programs to accept health insurance for the physician visits, you have nothing to lose! Trim Down Your Waist, Not Your Wallet! Think WeightMD (W8MD) for Weight loss!
W8MD weight loss team