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May 10, 2013

Obesity or Overweight?

Our current lifestyle has brought about various self-created problems. Some have predicted that today's youth will be the first in over a century with a life expectancy shorter than that of their parents. Overweight and obesity are linked to more deaths worldwide than underweight. 

What is the difference? The term Overweight is used to indicate the excess weight while obese refers to excess fat. Being overweight means having more body weight than is considered normal or healthy for one's age or build. On the other hand, Obesity is the condition of being obese, that is, excess amount of body fat. The most useful measure of the "O" word is body mass index (BMI), calculated from your height and weight..

Young people are becoming increasingly inactive due to the increasing sedentary nature of many forms of work, changing modes of transportation, and increasing urbanization. And they eat less than half the recommended portion of fruit and vegetables, while exceeding recommendations for fat, sugar and salt.

Changes in dietary and physical activity patterns, are often the result of environmental and societal changes associated with development, and lack of supportive policies such as health, agriculture, transport, urban planning, environment, food processing, distribution, marketing and education. So, what's all the fuss and concern?

There are major areas of serious life-threatening problems:
1. cardiovascular diseases
2. insulin resistance conditions that cause diabetes
3. large-bowel and hormonally-related cancers plus additional types of cancer
4. serious gall bladder issues
5. high blood pressure
6. increased body fat percentage also increases the likelihood of developing hypertension and 7. Type 2 diabetes, which has primarily been associated with older adults, but now attracts even obese prepubescent children
8. infertility, skin problems, arthritis, respiratory complications

Although the risk to physical health is the issue that appears to have received most attention, obese individuals are subject to discrimination in all kinds of situations. And the first negative health outcome is often psychological. Low self-esteem is further associated with feelings of sadness, loneliness, nervousness, and even perceived as less intelligent. According to the World Health Organization, more than one in ten of the world's adult population is obese, "fat stigma" is a common global problem.

Overweight and obesity and it's related diseases are reversible. The safest and most way to eradicate is by changing one's lifestyle, eating habits; reduce calories and increase physical activity, drinking plenty of distilled water daily. Keeping track of your weight, body mass index, and waist circumference, as well as your children's growth. Encourage youth clubs/team building activities to promote a healthy lifestyle in colleges and workplaces.

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