Topic: Body

Obesity - Part II - The Causes

Aug 20, 2007

The Distribution of Body Fat

Health care specialists are taking into consideration not only the amount of fat in a person's body but also the location of that fat. As a rule women gather fat in hips and buttocks. Men, in most cases, collect fat in their bellies, thus making them apple-shaped.

Too much of abdominal fat represents a high risk for developing of the disease. Scientists proved that waist circumference has a direct connection with abdominal fat. This fact can serve for managing the risks linked to obesity. Fat around waist means high risk for health problems related to obesity.

The Main Causes of Obesity

Calories are needed for our body in order to maintain life and be physically active. However, for maintaining a constant weight one must regulate the amount of the energy he or she consumed and used. The amount of calories consumed and spent differ from one person to another, however it does not only depend only on the person, important roles are also played by genetic and environmental factors.

As concerning genetic factors it is worth mentioning that obesity is running in a lot of families. It is quite difficult to spot obesity which developed due to some genetic factors from other factors that contribute to the disease. Till now science wasn't able to show connection between obesity and heredity.

A very important factor that might lead to overweight and health problems, related to excessive body fat, is the influence of the environment and society. The first includes people's lifestyles, meaning what one eats and what is his or her level of physical activity.

The term environment also means the world that surrounds us, it includes access to walk places and healthy food. Nowadays most people drive to their work instead of walking, eat "take out" food instead of preparing it by themselves and the vending machines at work are also included in the list with their high-fat snacks.

Obesity also has a strong connection with poverty and the level of education. For example high-calorie processed foods are less expensive and they can be found and prepared easier than foods considered to be healthy, like fresh fruits and vegetables. Among other reasons there is also the cost of gym memberships. However, the connection between obesity and the socio-economic status has not yet been conclusively established. In addition some studies showed that obesity constantly develops within high-income groups.

Despite the fact that a person is not able to change his or her genetic makeup, eating habits, levels of physical activities as well as other environmental factors can be changed. It is important to learn to choose food with lower fat and to recognize and manage the environmental cues such as smell that make you want to eat when there is no need or when you are not really hungry.

In addition try to take a walk instead of lying on the couch watching television. It is important also to eat your food at the table and not in front of the TV. These are the main rules to keep the risk of developing obesity away.

Listing Other Factors that Cause Obesity

It is worth mentioning that today there are some illnesses that are connected with gaining excessive weight or developing obesity. Such illnesses include: Hypothyroidism, which is a condition when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone. The illness often leads to lowered metabolic rate and vigor loss.

Another factor that can lead to obesity development is Cushing's syndrome. This represents a hormonal disorder. It occurs when the body's tissues are exposed for a long time to high levels of hormone cortisol.

The symptoms of illness vary. However, a lot of people suffer from upper body obesity, including a rounded face, increased fat around the neck, as well as thinning arms and legs.

A factor that can contribute to obesity is lack of sleep. Researchers recently found that people suffering from sleep problems could gain excessive weight over time.

Obesity may be also be the results of taking specific drugs, including steroids, some antidepressants, as well as medications prescribed for some psychiatric conditions or seizure disorders. Such drugs could slow the rate at which calories are burned. In addition these drugs are stimulating appetite. It is important to consult your doctor on what medicines to take. Doctors may recommend some medications that might have less effect on weight gain.