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1 in every 4 adults lives with this disease. What can you do to prevent and treat obesity?

Posted 2 November 2021 in Weight Loss

Three ladiesThere are rising obesity levels across the world with an estimated 2.7 billion adults who will be living with it by 2025. Yet, many suffer from its effects in silence. 

Obesity is a chronic disease

The effects of obesity, both physical and mental, can be devastating.

It can affect anyone and at any age, from any background and any ethnicity, and its causes are complex.

Modern-day, high-energy diets packed with unhealthy fats and sugars, such as processed and fast food, coupled with our increasingly sedentary lives are often blamed. But genetics and the environment around us can also play a role.

Either way, obesity IS a complex disease. And it can lead to health issues if left untreated.

The risks of obesity

If your BMI is over 30 then you’re classed as being obese, (though it’s worth noting this is not an exact science- Arnold Schwarzenegger in the prime of his bodybuilding career had a BMI of 31- because muscle weighs more than fat). If you don’t know yours you can calculate your BMI here.

https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-weight/bmi-calculator/

Living with obesity puts you at a higher risk of early-onset type 2 diabetes, stroke, heart disease, liver disorders, certain types of cancers and orthopaedic problems as well as back pain.

But these are just the physical issues...

Living with the stigma

Obesity can also cause mental health issues due to the stigma and discrimination around the disease.

It is often assumed in Western cultures that obese people are ‘lazy’ and should ‘eat less and exercise more’ but this oversimplifies a deeply complex condition that often presents alongside other health challenges which further muddy the water, such as metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.

It also overlooks the challenges that people who have struggled with weight for a long time have experienced. The repeated failures with diets and injuries acquired from starting intense exercise regimes before they have strengthened their joints.

Low self-esteem and wanting to isolate yourself from the rest of the world are common feelings, which can amplify the challenges you face if you’re prone to overeating when you feel depressed or stressed.

The lack of healthy dialogue and prevalence of flawed outdated approaches propagated in our communities further hinders its prevention and treatment.

So how can you treat obesity?

The main thing to consider is that it takes time to become obese - and it will take time to effectively treat it. There’s no quick fix, but there is a solution that can be customised to your needs.

By taking a holistic approach to treatment, where you look at lifestyle, dietary and environmental changes, you’re more likely to form and maintain healthy, good habits that last for life.

For example, a good weight loss management programme will help you form a balanced, calorie-controlled diet that you’re likely to stick to, especially if you have realistic goals to work towards.

These don’t include so-called ‘fad’ diets, which restrict certain food groups or include fasting – you may lose weight quickly but you’re not forming sustainable healthy habits that will last long-term.

What’s more, adding more active time into your week, whether it’s walking, swimming or jogging, all helps. The recommended time spent on activities is between 2.5 and 5 hours a week.

Webmed weight management service

We can provide a medicated weight loss service that will reduce your appetite considerably enabling you to make healthy food choices leading to a sustainable reduction in your weight.

To help you on your weight loss journey we provide some very useful NHS links that provide lots of tips and support on healthy eating and lifestyle habits. We also give you access to our app where you can record your success and ask for advice from a healthcare professional.

Find out how we can help

References

Saying Goodbye to BMI | In Body USA [accessed 18/11/21]

Causes of Obesity | World Obesity Federation [accessed 18/11/21]

Obesity - Treatment - NHS (www.nhs.uk) [accessed 18/11/21]
 

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