The rising health risk of obesity – A preventable condition

September 30, 2021 by Dr Arun Bhardwaj0
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Obesity is one of the most common lifestyle diseases affecting people worldwide, cutting across race, gender, and age. As per a report published by the World Health Organization (WHO), the rate of incidence of obesity has tripled since 1975, with 13 % of adults worldwide recorded obese in 2016. The same report also revealed that 39 million children below the age of 5 were found to be obese in the same year.

Doctors and other domain experts constantly emphasize on the importance of reducing obesity. But why is obesity a threat?

Excess body weight tends to hamper the normal functioning of the human body. Persons that are obese suffer from several kinds of co-morbidities that compromise on health. Long-term obesity increases the effects of the co-morbidities and can significantly reduce life expectancy.

As per an article in India Today, India ranks 3rd in terms of obesity across the world. Metropolitan cities like Delhi are hotspots for obesity, mostly because of the sedentary lifestyles and food habits. A research on adults in Delhi (age 25 to 45 years) reported in the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research states that there is a high prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome in persons with obesity. This is a cluster of several conditions that usually occur together and increase the chances of diabetes and heart disease. Metabolic Syndrome shows through occurrence of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and high blood sugar levels.

What are the ill effects of excess weight?

Excess body weight compromises on the health of an individual in several ways –

  • Sleep apnea is a sleeping disorder characterized mostly by snoring and stopping of breath during sleep. Persons with this disorder wake up gasping for breath in the middle of a sleep stretch. The disruption in sleeping also causes excessive sleepiness and tiredness during the day and frequent headaches.
  • Diabetes is another common condition that affects persons with obesity. There are high chances of developing insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes, especially owing to unhealthy food habits. High blood sugar levels for a long time also tend to damage blood vessels, nerves, eyes and other organs in the body, leading to a poor quality of life.
  • Persons with obesity also commonly suffer from hypertension. The excess body weight puts undue pressure on kidneys, causing an imbalance with blood pressure in the arteries and ultimately leading to hypertension. Long-standing hypertension poses the risk of heart attack or stroke.
  • Obesity, being related to excess weight and high levels of body fat can lead to a condition called dyslipedemia, wherein there is increase in unhealthy cholesterol in the blood vessels. Often this leads to deposits of fat and cholesterol in the arteries, called plaque, which blocks the normal flow of blood. In extreme cases, this leads to heart attack, stroke, embolisms and other related complications. The high levels of body fat also consistently cause damage to the liver, resulting in a condition called fatty liver, which ultimately can lead to liver cirrhosis.
  • High body weight combined with an unhealthy diet also leads to gall bladder disease. This is corrected through surgery but leads to a compromise in the digestion ability of the patient. There is also a high risk of rupture of the gall bladder and associated complications.
  • Thyroid disorder is another common condition affecting the metabolic state of persons with obesity. Since it is a hormonal disorder, its affects a re significant and cause a lot of discomfort.
  • Excess weight is another cause of infertility and conditions like Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). In addition to compromising the regular cycles of the body, infertility also causes a lot of mental stress due to the hormonal imbalances in the body.
  • Heart disease is one of the most common side effects of excess weight in the human body. The deposits of fat and cholesterol (called plaque) in the arteries leads to inefficient transfer of blood and lead to heart attack.
  • High body weight for a long time can lead to various kinds of cancers in the body, most commonly that of the pancreas, gall bladder, liver, thyroid, and uterus, among other organs.

Getting rid of excess weight can be difficult. It is always advised to take the help of professionals in terms of weight loss efforts.

If you are struggling with stubborn excess weight, some of the best weight loss surgeons in Delhi can help guide you in the correct direction. A consultation with a specialist can help chalk out a weight loss plan, in keeping with your health status, for efficiently getting rid of the weight. Bariatric surgery is a safe and effective way to reduce excess weight and reap benefits in the long run. The best bariatric surgeons in Delhi can provide a detailed plan for bariatric surgery and post-surgical care for long-term healthcare plans. Bariatric surgery can help reduce the ill effects of obesity, like high blood sugar and thyroid disorders, and aid you in living in the best of your health.

 

References –

  1. WHO report – https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight
  2. India Today Report – https://www.indiatoday.in/mail-today/story/obesity-india-weighs-third-on-obesity-scale-196126-2014-06-08
  3. JCDR Report – https://www.jcdr.net/article_fulltext.asp?issn=0973-709x&year=2017&month=August&volume=11&issue=8&page=LC01&id=10336

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Dr Arun Bhardwaj


Dr.Arun Bhardwaj is a highly skilled Advanced Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgeon based in Delhi/NCR. He specializes in minimally invasive surgical procedures (basic and advance), Gastrointestinal Surgery and Bariatric Surgery.