When it comes to our weight, it's pretty safe to say that, for the most part, people often find themselves struggling. That isn't just a generalisation either, it is a fact, backed up by scientific evidence. Losing weight is sadly far harder than actually gaining weight, which again, is one of the reasons why worldwide obesity levels are currently at record breaking highs. This means that, since records began, there are more obese people living in the world than ever before and, to make matters worse, life expectancies are also decreasing instead of increasing. Currently more than 2 in 3 adults are now classed as being overweight, with 1 out of those 3 being classed as obese or morbidly obese. Every single year, governments and healthcare officials are forced to spend literally billions upon billions on obesity-related healthcare, and things sadly don't look set to change anytime soon. To make matters worse, more than 33% of children and adolescents are now also classed as being overweight or obese. To help emphasize just how dangerous it can be to be overweight, here's an in-depth look at some of the main dangers and health risks associated with obesity.
Hypertension – Also known as high blood pressure, hypertension is one of the most common side effects associated with increased levels of body fat. The main reasons why obesity tends to cause high blood pressure include the fact that, first off, individuals with increased body fat levels often have increased levels of high LDL cholesterol, which can block the arteries and slow down circulation. To counter the poor circulation, the heart attempts to beat faster and tries to pump more blood around the body. Hypertension can therefore, lead to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure, and much more besides.
Diabetes – Diabetes is currently one the world's biggest causes for concern in regards to health and well-being, due to the fact that sadly, so many people are now being diagnosed as diabetic, especially type 2 diabetic. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) out of all of diabetes patients in the world, more than 90% of them have type 2 Diabetes. Obesity causes our cells to become resistant to insulin, a hormone responsible for regulating blood sugar levels. As the body becomes insulin resistant, the insulin becomes less and less effective, until the body is no longer able to regulate its blood sugar levels.
Heart disease – Being obese leads to increased LDL cholesterol levels, as we previously mentioned. This in turn can lead to coronary heart disease and an increased risk of suffering a heart attack. Being diagnosed with higher than average LDL cholesterol levels can increase your chances of suffering from heart disease by more than 20%. Looking after your heart is absolutely essential, and by simply losing weight, you are able to do just that.
Poor self-esteem – Finally, another very serious side effect associated with being obese and/or overweight, is the fact that it can lead to such low levels of self esteem and self confidence. Obesity can lead to eating disorders and body image disorders, as well as contributing to other underlying factors such as stress, anxiety, and depression.