Obesity Education

Although the descriptions below give a lot of information about Obesity.. I must personally stress to live a healthy life. Obesity in some cases is a Disease or a Addiction or a Comfort Food but in a huge Majority it is caused by bad dieting,lack of exercise,social problems,and non physical activities, either way Obesity can Kill You. I do not advice Gastric Bypass or any surgical methods to lose weight as a easy way out. My surgery saved my life because I had no options but I still have to live healthy and stay active or I can gain it all back and die. Some people are able to lose weight with a change in diet and lifestyle so I must stress that Usedtobe803.com is NOT a Pro Surgery Page. I am here to help people change their lives and give inspiration to others. If you have an addiction or other emotional problems causing you to eat then Please seek help from a Licensed Psychologist or Counselor and if budget allows a good Dietician or Trainer. If you have less options due to causes such as a disease,thyroid problems or a hormonal embalance and diets show very little or no change then consult your doctor about surgical options. Gastric Bypass and other surgical methods can save the lives of many people who are unable to lose weight normally. Thank You and God Bless!

Descriptions Used From www.ObesityHelp.com

What is Obesity?

Though we all use the terms "fat" and "obese" casually in conversation, there is a medical definition of the condition and yes, obesity is considered a health "condition."


specifically refers to an excessive amount of body fat. "Overweight" refers to an excessive amount of body weight that includes muscle, bone, fat, and water. As a rule, women have more body fat than men. Most health care professionals agree that men with more than 25 percent body fat and women with more than 30 percent body fat are obese. These numbers should not be confused with the body mass index (BMI), however, which is more commonly used by health care professionals to determine the effect of body weight on the risk for some diseases.

How is Obesity Measured?

Measuring the exact amount of a person's body fat is not easy. The most accurate measures are to weigh a person underwater or in a chamber that uses air displacement to measure body volume, or to use an X-ray test called Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry, also known as DEXA. These methods are not practical for the average person, and are done only in research centers with special equipment.

There are simpler methods to estimate body fat. One is to measure the thickness of the layer of fat just under the skin in several parts of the body. Another involves sending a harmless amount of electricity through a person's body. Results from these methods, however, can be inaccurate if done by an inexperienced person or on someone with extreme obesity.

Because measuring a person's body fat is difficult, health care professionals often rely on other means to diagnose obesity. Weight-for-height tables, used for decades, have a range of acceptable weights for a person of a given height. One problem with these tables is that there are many versions, all with different weight ranges. Another problem is that they do not distinguish between excess fat and muscle. According to the tables, a very muscular person may be classified obese when he or she is not. The BMI is less likely to misidentify a person's appropriate weight-for-height range.

What is Morbid Obesity?

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a person is considered "obese" when he or she weighs 20 percent or more than his or her ideal body weight. At that point, the person's weight poses a real health risk. Obesity becomes "morbid" when it significantly increases the risk of one or more obesity-related health conditions or serious diseases (also known as co-morbidities).

Morbid obesity sometimes called "clinically severe obesity" is defined as being 100 lbs. or more over ideal body weight or having a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or higher.

According to the NIH Consensus Report, morbid obesity is a serious chronic disease, meaning that its symptoms build slowly over an extended period of time. Today 97 million Americans, more than one-third of the adult population, are overweight or obese. An estimated 5-10 million of those are considered morbidly obese.

What Causes Morbid Obesity?

Obesity occurs when a person consumes more calories from food than he or she burns. Our bodies need calories to sustain life and be physically active, but to maintain weight we need to balance the energy we eat with the energy we use. When a person eats more calories than he or she burns, the energy balance is tipped toward weight gain and obesity. This imbalance between calories-in and calories-out may differ from one person to another. Genetic, environmental, and other factors may all play a part.

Genetic Factors

Obesity tends to run in families, suggesting a genetic cause. However, families also share diet and lifestyle habits that may contribute to obesity. Separating genetic from other influences on obesity is often difficult. Even so, science does show a link between obesity and heredity.

Environmental and Social Factors

Environment strongly influences obesity. Consider that most people in the United States alive today were also alive in 1980, when obesity rates were lower. Since this time, our genetic make-up has not changed, but our environment has. Environment includes lifestyle behaviors such as what a person eats and his or her level of physical activity. Too often Americans eat out, consume large meals and high-fat foods, and put taste and convenience ahead of nutrition. Also, most people in the United States do not get enough physical activity.

Environment also includes the world around us—our access to places to walk and healthy foods, for example. Today, more people drive long distances to work instead of walking, live in neighborhoods without sidewalks, tend to eat out or get “take out” instead of cooking, or have vending machines with high-calorie, high-fat snacks at their workplace. Our environment often does not support healthy habits.

In addition, social factors including poverty and a lower level of education have been linked to obesity. One reason for this may be that high-calorie processed foods cost less and are easier to find and prepare than healthier foods, such as fresh vegetables and fruits. Other reasons may include inadequate access to safe recreation places or the cost of gym memberships, limiting opportunities for physical activity. However, the link between low socio-economic status and obesity has not been conclusively established, and recent research shows that obesity is also increasing among high-income groups.

Although you cannot change your genetic makeup, you can work on changing your eating habits, levels of physical activity, and other environmental factors. Try these ideas:

· Learn to choose sensible portions of nutritious meals that are lower in fat.

· Learn to recognize and control environmental cues (like inviting smells or a package of cookies on the counter) that make you want to eat when you are not hungry.

· Engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity (like brisk walking) on most, preferably all, days of the week.

· Take a walk instead of watching television.

· Eat meals and snacks at a table, not in front of the TV.

· Keep records of your food intake and physical activity.

Other Causes of Obesity

Some illnesses may lead to or are associated with weight gain or obesity:

· Hypothyroidism, a condition in which the thyroid gland fails to produce enough thyroid hormone. It often results in lowered metabolic rate and loss of vigor.

· Cushing's syndrome, a hormonal disorder caused by prolonged exposure of the body's A doctor can tell whether there are underlying medical conditions that are causing weight gain or making weight loss difficult.

· Lack of sleep may also contribute to obesity. Recent studies suggest that people with sleep problems may gain weight over time. On the other hand, obesity may contribute to sleep problems due to medical conditions such as sleep apnea, where a person briefly stops breathing at multiple times during the night.

· Certain drugs such as steroids, some antidepressants, and some medications for psychiatric conditions or seizure disorders may cause weight gain. These drugs may slow the rate at which the body burns calories, stimulate appetite, or cause the body to hold on to extra water. Be sure your doctor knows all the medications you are taking (including over-the-counter medications and dietary supplements). He or she may recommend a different medication that has less effect on weight gain. tissues to high levels of the hormone cortisol. Symptoms vary, but most people have upper body obesity, rounded face, increased fat around the neck, and thinning arms and legs.

· Polycystic ovary syndrome, a condition characterized by high levels of androgens (male hormone), irregular or missed menstrual cycles, and in some cases, multiple small cysts in the ovaries. Cysts are fluid-filled sacs.

Health Risks and Related Conditions

Obesity is more than a cosmetic problem. Many serious medical conditions have been linked to obesity, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke. Obesity is also linked to higher rates of certain types of cancer. Men who are obese are more likely than non-obese men to develop cancer of the colon, rectum, or prostate. Women who are obese are more likely than non-obese women to develop cancer of the gallbladder, uterus, cervix, or ovaries. Esophageal cancer has also been associated with obesity.

Other diseases and health problems linked to obesity include:

Type 2 Diabetes
High blood pressure/Heart disease
Dyslipidemia/High Cholesterol
Osteoarthritis of weight-bearing joints
Sleep apnea/Respiratory problems
Gastroesophageal reflux/Heartburn
Urinary stress incontinence
Menstrual irregularities
Health care providers generally agree that the more obese a person is, the more likely he or she is to develop health problems.

Psychological and Social Effects

Emotional suffering may be one of the most painful parts of obesity. American society emphasizes physical appearance and often equates attractiveness with slimness, especially for women. Such messages make overweight people feel unattractive.

Many people think that individuals with obesity are gluttonous, lazy, or both. This is not true. As a result, people who are obese often face prejudice or discrimination in the job market, at school, and in social situations. Feelings of rejection, shame, or depression may occur.

Who should lose weight?

Health care providers generally agree that people who have a BMI of 30 or greater can improve their health through weight loss. This is especially true for people with a BMI of 40 or greater, who are considered extremely obese.

Preventing additional weight gain is recommended if you have a BMI between 25 and 29.9, unless you have other risk factors for obesity-related diseases. Obesity experts recommend you try to lose weight if you have two or more of the following:

Family history of certain chronic diseases. If you have close relatives who have had heart disease or diabetes, you are more likely to develop these problems if you are obese.

Preexisting medical conditions.High blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol levels, low HDL cholesterol levels, high triglycerides, and high blood glucose are all warning signs of some obesity-associated diseases.

Large waist circumference. Men who have waist circumferences greater than 40 inches, and women who have waist circumferences greater than 35 inches, are at higher risk of diabetes, dyslipidemia (abnormal amounts of fat in the blood), high blood pressure, and heart disease.

Fortunately, a weight loss of 5 to 10 percent of your initial body weight can do much to improve health by lowering blood pressure and other risk factors for obesity-related diseases. In addition, research shows that a 5- to 7-percent weight loss brought about by moderate diet and exercise can delay or possibly prevent type 2 diabetes in people at high risk for the disease.

In a recent study, participants who were overweight and had pre-diabetes—a condition in which a person’s blood glucose level is higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes—were able to delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes by adopting a low-fat, low-calorie diet and exercising for 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week.

Treatment Options

Normally, as food moves along the digestive tract, digestive juices and enzymes digest and absorb calories and nutrients. After we chew and swallow our food, it moves down the esophagus to the stomach, where a strong acid continues the digestive process.

The stomach can hold about 3 pints of food at one time. When the stomach contents move to the duodenum, the first segment of the small intestine, bile and pancreatic juice speed up digestion. Most of the iron and calcium in the foods we eat is absorbed in the duodenum. The jejunum and ileum, the remaining two segments of the nearly 20 feet of small intestine, complete the absorption of almost all calories and nutrients. The food particles that cannot be digested in the small intestine are stored in the large intestine until eliminated.

Surgical Weight Loss Programs

Bariatric surgery, or weight loss surgery, is a method of weight loss for the severely obese who are unable to lose weight by any other means. As people learn more about the many health risks of being obese, greater numbers seek what may seem like a drastic solution: surgery.

Bariatric surgery includes a spectrum of procedures from restrictive to malabsorptive to those combining the two. Restrictive procedures such as Adjustable Gastric Banding (LapBand®) and Vertical Banded Gastroplasty (VBG) reduce the size of the stomach, and malabsorptive and combined procedures such as Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass (RGB),Biliopancreatic Diversion, Fobi Pouch and Duodenal Switch (DS) reduce the body's ability to absorb calories and nutrients from food.

Two Methods of Weight Loss Surgery

Surgical approaches include laparoscopic procedures, in which surgery is performed through small abdominal openings. Such minimal-access surgery offers a faster, less painful recovery. But not everyone qualifies for less-invasive surgery. It depends on medical history, surgical difficulty, and body shape.

Traditional open weight loss surgery

Once the only method used for surgical procedures, traditional open surgery involves making a 10- to 12-inch incision to access the stomach and intestines. Depending on surgeon expertise incision size can vary on the open surgeries.

Minimally invasive, or laparoscopic, weight loss surgery

In minimally invasive, or laparoscopic, surgery, the surgeon uses five or six small incisions (each 1/4 and 1/2 inch long) to gain access to the stomach and intestines. The laparoscope is a telescope attached to a video camera.

The surgeon inserts the laparoscope through the incisions and gets a magnified view of the patient’s organs on a television monitor. The entire operation is performed inside the abdomen after gas has been inserted to expand the abdomen. Minimally invasive surgery techniques have reduced hospital and recovery times for many operations. The incidences of complications have also been reduced.

Both approaches have excellent long-term results, allowing patients to lose 80-90% of their excess weight in 10-24 months, with most patients maintaining 48-74% of their initial weight loss after five years. However, there are risks involved. This option, therefore, is usually restricted to patients who cannot lose weight on one of the dietary programs discussed in Non-Surgical Weight Loss.

BMI Calculator

The BMI is a tool used to assess overweight and obesity and monitor changes in body weight. Like the weight-for-height tables, BMI has its limitations because it does not measure body fat or muscle directly. It is calculated by dividing a person's weight in pounds by height in inches squared and multiplied by 703.

Two people can have the same BMI but different body fat percentages. A bodybuilder with a large muscle mass and low percentage of body fat may have the same BMI as a person who has more body fat. However, a BMI of 30 or higher usually indicates excess body fat.

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