What usually Makes us Obese?
Obesity is an issue of global proportions affecting both adults and children. It is a very alarming phenomenon not only because of the serious effects it has on people's health but also because the percentage of obese people has already reached a very high level. According to recent research, the average obesity rate in the United States of America is higher than 20%, while 4 states have even exceeded 35%.
Most people tend to “label” obese individuals simply as lazy. Even though there are in most cases – as a rule, obese men and women do not exercise and do not want to follow a diet or at least a healthy nutrition schedule – the causes of obesity can be entirely different. And, since knowing the reason for which something happens is the key to understanding it, we are going to make a short list of the most common causes of obesity that have been studied and verified by modern science.
The benefits of exercising are known to everyone. Unfortunately, some people either choose to avoid it or simply cannot do it due to lack of time, money, or infrastructure like parks that encourage walking and jogging.
Children tend to follow the habits of their parents, so if one or both of the parents are obese and choose to eat unhealthy foods, the chances of their kid becoming obese as well increase significantly.
Every single one of our bodily functions is controlled by genes. In our case, they control how much fat is stored in the body. So, even if two people of the same height and weight consume the same amount of calories, one may store more fat than the other. Since fat accumulates over time, it is very easy for some people who are genetically prone to obesity to gain weight fast and become obese.
There are certain types of medicines that are known to reduce the amount of calories that our body normally burns, increase our appetite or a combination of both.
Lack of sleep
Sleeping less than the required number of hours disrupts the normal function of the metabolism. It also increases our appetite by altering the levels of two key hormones, ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin is the one produced when we are feeling hungry while leptin is produced when we are “full”. Insufficient sleep increases the concentration of ghrelin and reduces the one of leptin, creating the (false) feeling that we are hungry. But, that's not all. Feeling tired makes us skip exercising and also avoid cooking, thus choosing to eat take-out foods that contain high amounts of fat.
All of the above are factors that contribute to reaching the weight level classified as obesity. Avoiding such a physical state is harder for some than for others, but it should be a top priority for all of us, mainly because of the health issues obesity can cause, some of which are very serious and difficult to deal with. Consulting a nutrition expert paired with a regular schedule of (even light) exercise can literally do miracles and make our task extremely easier.