Obesity is awesome from a Wall Street perspective. It’s not just one disease – there are all sorts of related diseases to profit from. – Anne Wojcicki
If you are obese, you are at great risk of developing different types of health conditions including cancer and Type 2 Diabetes. About 35% of the US population is suffering from obesity. That is more than 78 million adults, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC.
We have been tackling this epidemic for years but the number of overweight people just spikes by the year. Although around 300,000 adults from across 18 states have undergone weight loss surgery, the latest statistics is nowhere near positive.
What are the Risks?
- High cholesterol
- Hypertension or high blood pressure
- Metabolic syndrome
- Cardiovascular diseases
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Sleep apnea
- Gallbladder disease
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
In fact, obesity is linked to the 10 most common cancers in the United Kingdom alone. Scientists from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine conducted a 7.5-year study. The study involved 5.24 million people in the UK ages 16 and above. Findings show that obesity caused 12,000 cases of cancer, which may incur a 3,700 increase if the problem is not resolved.
This means that if you have a high Body Mass Index (BMI), you are most likely to develop such types of cancer as:
- Cancer of the uterus
- Gallbladder cancer
- Cancer of the kidney
- Cervical cancer
- Thyroid cancer
- Cancer of the liver
- Colon cancer
- Ovarian cancer
- Breast cancer
Further, the study demonstrates that the BMI counts as a major factor in developing specific cancer types. An increase in BMI, for example, puts an individual at risk of developing: cancer of the uterus by 62%; gallbladder (31%), kidney (25%), cervix (10%), thyroid (9%), and leukaemia (9%).
But, obesity is just a fraction of a whole set of factors. Scientists also consider age, gender, and menopause.
While the romance between obesity and cancer is complex, it is clear that having the excess weight may put our lives in danger. It means shorter life expectancy, lack of productivity, and poor quality of life. Perhaps a ton of money wasted on poor health.
This latest study, like many other studies on obesity, is a wake-up call to everyone who has been living in their comfort zone.
Are There Still Ways to Fight Obesity?
For adults who have tried everything to lose weight but did not succeed, I suggest you undergo bariatric surgery. Teenagers still have time to catch up. Eat less, do not overindulge, and stay active. Don’t wait until it is too late before you take action.
Let me also add that continuous weight gain despite healthy eating and regular exercise can be attributed to hormones. Well, I did enjoy eating but I believe I was active enough to burn all the calories. Still, I would be the perfect example of this hormonal issue. I suggest you also consult your doctor regarding this for you to know your chances and what to do about it.
Parents should educate themselves and their children about the benefits of responsible eating. Accustom them to good eating habits and open their eyes to the consequences of bad eating habits as early as possible. Parents serve as the kids’ role models in everything especially during their formative years.
Adults should also pay attention to their weight more often. It would help if you learn about your weight soon enough by checking your BMI. If your BMI is already 25 or above, start implementing a suitable diet to prevent gaining more weight. Take note: Having a BMI of 25-29.9 is considered overweight.
Obesity is one of the leading causes of preventable deaths in the US. This does not happen by accident. We are responsible for our own health. If you screwed up your body big time, there is still a chance to correct your mistakes.
Don’t get me wrong. Eating is good. Eating too much and without care is bad. Don’t give business magnates the satisfaction of profiting from one disease to another. Instead, take control of your life, eat healthy, go for weight loss surgery if you must, and live life again to the fullest.