Introduction to Obesity
Obesity is often referred to as a disease in which the amount of fat accumulated in the body increases rapidly. The disease has been well known in recent times due to increase in fast food popularity and its consumption by people of all ages. Fast food lovers are the main victims of this disease and alone in US, as many as one-third of all Americans are obese based on the BMI (Body mass index) criteria (Monaco, 2009, p. 201).
In addition to body image issues, obesity causes major health issues. It is the second leading cause of preventable death (after smoking), and is associated with type 2 diabetes, hyperlipidemia, coronary artery disease, arthritis, gallstones, and certain types of cancer. Until lately, obesity was considered as the consequence of a sedentary lifestyle and the chronic ingestion of excess calories (Ingram, 2005, p. 108).
This may be the major factor for many individuals, but there is confirmation of strong genetic, metabolic, and environmental influences in the development of obesity. Certain illnesses, such as Cushing’s syndrome or hypothyroidism, and medications, such as glucocorticoids, can also cause obesity. However, less than one percent of all obese patients have an identifiable secondary cause of obesity (Jim, 2010, p. 208).
Obesity has disastrous effects on human body and it is advisable that immediate actions must be taken by a person suffering from obesity to overcome this illness. Successful programs for weight loss reduction and maintenance should be started and followed under the care of a physician and/or a nutritionist. A person suffering from obesity must engage him/her in exercises for at least 30 minutes daily, must consume high fiber and low fat diet, change eating behavior and change the daily day activities to bring the routine to normal (Wernick, 2007, p. 108).
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