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Potential Causes of Obesity Essay

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Updated: Oct 30th, 2021

This exploratory paper would discuss and evaluate the issue of obesity. Poor nutrition, lack of physical activity, genes, slow metabolism, and socioeconomic status are all potential causes of obesity. Obesity is a disorder which refers to having an increased body fat. Obesity is also referred to as being extremely overweight. But a person can be overweight without being obese. For example, a 250 pound, 6 foot tall linebacker may be overweight according to ordinary standards but can have a below- average amount of body fat. Even though there are many causes and side effects, there are also many ways to prevent, cure and treat obesity.

There isn’t one single cause for obesity, depending on the person obesity can be caused by physical or emotional problems, that occurs and they are somehow forced or tricked into obtaining unhealthy standards.

Obesity is a modern day problem which risk factors’ and popularity has increased rapidly over the past few years. It also explains that it is important to maintain a healthy weight in order to reduce the risk of disease or even more serious; death. It isn’t easy for someone with obesity because people and/ or the media will look and treat them differently or criticize them just because of their physical appearances. Therefore obesity is a disease in which a person has so much body fat they are endangering their health, so they are at risk to many harmful and deadly physical and emotional problems.

Physical Effects of Obesity

Obesity is a disease with many physical effects in and outside of your body. Obesity effects you brain, airway, heart, lungs, arteries, wrists, breasts, liver, gallbladder, esophagus, stomach, immune system, kidneys, pancreas, colon and rectum, reproductive system (uterus, fertility and pregnancy), bladder, knees, veins and feet. Obesity can increase your risk of stroke. Obesity affects the brain by narrowing the arteries with fatty deposits which can form blood clots therefore blocking the supply of blood to the brain which can cause a stroke. (Burros, B7) Obesity is also associated with high blood pressure which also increases the risk of stroke.

This is also known as atherosclerosis. Obesity causes a destructive sleep apnoea which causes the airway to collapse partially while you are sleeping. This obstructive sleep apnoea is more common in people with obesity because a lot of their fat is deposited in the neck area. People with obesity often have abnormal levels of cholesterol and other body fats. This eventually causes coronary heart disease fatty deposits start to clog arteries supplying the heart which can cause angina, or heart attack. Obesity during childhood can risk adulthood with heart and blood vessel disease.

A person with obesity struggles with breathing because obesity reduces the lung function and weakens the muscles that help us breathe. Doctors/ researchers are recognizing frequently the connections between obesity and chronic breathing difficulties. As weight increases blood pressure also rises. High blood pressure increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a compression of a nerve in the wrist area causing pain, numbness or tingling in your fingers and in your grip. This disease is four times more popular in people with obesity. Women with obesity after menopause are at risk of getting breast cancer.

They are also less likely to survive the breast cancer. Liver disease related with alcohol is more common with people with obesity. (Roberts, 31-32) Gallstones in the gallbladder are more common in overweight and obese people. Gallstones affect about one in three obese people. Cancer in the esophagus is extremely common in people with obesity. Stomach cancer is also very common in people with obesity. Having too much weight can damage your immune system.

Obesity is related to an increased risk of infections following wounds and burns. Obesity also damages your kidneys. They have an increased risk of kidney failure because obesity forces your kidneys to work harder. They (especially women) also are more likely to develop renal cell cancer. Obesity is the strongest risk factor for type II diabetes. Cancer of the colon or rectum (bowel cancer) is more common in obese people than in people with a healthier BMI range.

Obesity unfortunately affects the reproductive system for both males and females. Firstly, it lessens fertility in both genders. Women who are severely obese are 3 times more likely to have menstrual problems than women who have a healthy weight. They also have a 3-4 times higher risk of cancer of the endometrium. For females, being obese, before getting pregnant increases the risk of pregnancy complications. When it is time to give birth, obese females are more likely to have an overdue birth, induced labor or long labor.

Obesity also causes increased caesarean section rate and more blood loss during birth, and also increased risks of complications after labor. Osteoarthritis of the knee, hip, hands and lower back is very common in people with obesity. Severs’ disease cause heel pain in children during early ages of puberty. There are many physical effects of obesity; some which are more serious/ deadly than others.

Psychological Effects of Obesity

Emotional suffering may be one of the most painful parts of obesity. American society emphasizes physical appearance and often equates attractiveness with slimness, especially for women. Such messages make overweight people feel unattractive. Many people think that obese individuals are gluttonous, lazy, or both, even though this is not true. As a result, obese people often face prejudice or discrimination in the job market, at school, and in social situations.

Feelings of rejection, shame, or depression are common among people with obesity. In most cases, obese people have trouble finding some romantic relationships. Obese women in particular have trouble finding some romance because the standard of beauty set by society today requires that a woman should be thin. Since the media uses ultra thin models to promote the idea of beauty, even women who are just slightly on the fleshy side find themselves threatened.

People with obesity may feel insignificant compared to other people and the way they look. It is hard for them to realize that they are just as good as anyone else and looks don’t really matter. There social life suffers because they don’t feel comfortable in public places even when they are among friends. This also leads to having trouble with relationships with the opposite sex and makes a person feel isolated from everyone else with so many problems which seem impossible to face. This quote explains very generally about the psychological problems people with obesity have to face.

It is unfair that the media poisons our minds by trying to convince viewers that the way models and celebrities look (skinny/ thin) is normal and considered to be the perfect body. They don’t realize that it makes people feel insecure about the way they look causing them to suffer from many psychological problems. (Ryan, A-13) Just because someone is skinny doesn’t mean they are prettier or uglier than another person. As humans we tend to forget that it is what’s inside and matters.

Our personality and our talents our traits we should be recognized for; not the shape or size of our bodies. We are all different and should embrace the traits which make us stand out for who we are. Therefore the media is guilty for trying to persuade viewers that the people we see on TV and their bodies are things which we should imitate.

Works Cited

Burros, Marian. “New Approach to Childhood Obesity is urged.” The New York Times. 2004.

Roberts, Matt, Jon Roberts. Fitness for Life: New York, New York: DK Pub., 2002. 31-32.

Ryan, Joan. “In Fat Race, U.S. Leads, World Gains:” San Francisco Chronicle. 2004, final ed.: A-13.

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