What is obesity?
If you’ve reached this page, great chances are that you’ve asked this question before or at least wondered what this condition means.
It also means that, so far, the answers you’ve found both online and offline have proved completely unsatisfactory, hence your continued quest.
Bother no more…here on this page, we’re going to discuss the issue of obesity in a manner that will both be pleasing, educating and entertaining.
More importantly, we are going to make certain that you clearly understand what this particular condition means in its entirety.
* * *
This site is a participant in the Amazon Associates Program. A commission may be earned on qualifying purchases (at no extra cost to you) if links herein are used.
* * *
What is Obesity – and How Asking the Wrong Question(s) can Never Bring Forth the Right Answers
Many persons who seek to know what obesity is – or are concerned whether they are obese or not usually ask the wrong question.
For such people, obesity is an issue of outward fat accumulation that can easily be seen by anyone – directly and without any further or additional input.
While this is the generally accepted norm, we tend to disagree – completely…and respectfully submit that, approaching the subject of weight and obesity in such a manner is never going to lend a proper understanding of the subject matter.
Instead, we prefer the approach of Medical News Today:
Obesity is a condition where a person has accumulated so much body fat that it might have a negative effect on their health.
If a person’s bodyweight is at least 20% higher than it should be, he or she is considered obese.
If your Body Mass Index (BMI) is between 25 and 29.9 you are considered overweight. If your BMI is 30 or over you are considered obese.
If you look carefully, this definition makes use of three (3) very important facts that cannot be overlooked:
- Negative accumulation of fat in the body (the condition most of us see and conclude, most of the time).
- Body weight being at least 20% higher than it should be and
- Running a BMI that is 30 or over.
Thus, to be considered obese, one must take a long look at these features and be satisfied that he/she actually satisfies the conditions stated therein.
If you’re confused about the concept of Body Mass Index (BMI) or would appreciate yours directly, you could use help from (a) Smart BMI Calculator.
Having treated what obesity means, let’s now direct our attention to something else – what actually causes obesity in the first place.
Recommended Reading: Best Bikes for Large Guys/Men
Causes of Obesity & Overweight
There are many causes of obesity. However, we have noticed that some of the causes are more persistent and present a far bigger challenge than others.
Accordingly, we are going to focus on the eight (8) most challenging causes of this condition. Here:
- An inactive lifestyle/lack of energy balance.
- Social issues.
- Junk food.
- Genes and family history.
- Lack of education/awareness.
1. An Inactive Lifestyle/Lack of Energy Balance
By far, the biggest cause of obesity and the reality of being overweight is an inactive lifestyle – leading directly to a chronic lack of energy balance.
A situation where you sit at your desk the whole day – and week; and the only ‘exercise’ you ever engage in sex is with your partner, you are certainly looking for trouble and very soon, you will either find out that you are either obese or at least, overweight.
The explanation for this is simple and quite straightforward: if you stock energy (by way of food) more than you burn it (by way of exercise), certainly, the excess is going to find itself right to your middle, bottom, checks and other areas of the body as fat.
…unwanted fat (thus accumulated) will certainly wind up aiding in the overall obesity process.
As simple as this appears, overeating is also one of the major cause of obesity and the fact of being overweight today.
Eating more than one should ordinarily eat is the fastest shortcut to gaining more weight and eventually, becoming either overweight or obese.
Overeating takes various forms – with many who indulge in the act hardly even appreciating the fact that they overeat.
However, if you eat more than 3 times a day – or eat more than a conventional plate of food per sitting, you most certainly are overeating and are gradually speeding right to obeseville.
Persons who are depressed naturally tend to lose interest in everyday life and occurrence. When such reality hits a person, he/she will naturally tend to put on weight, weight that may lead to an obese future later on.
Depression, if not worked upon could lead to chronic obesity and in the long run, pose more harm than just harmful deposits of fats in the human body.
Unfortunately, depression is not a factor that can easily be discarded with by the wave of a hand…it is most often beyond the direct control of an individual suffering from it – making it a realm where expert/professional help could/should be actively sought.
4. Social Issues
Social issues can also contribute big time to fat accumulation in the body and to a large extent, obesity.
This point is trickier than the rest but in simple analysis, this is how it translates: someone who knows about good food/balanced diet but is too broke to buy and consume same will, without doubt, rely on junk. The net result of this decision that is forced on him/her by financial constraints may well lead to unwanted acquisition of fat in the body in the long run.
Aside this, there is something else…
A very broke person, ordinarily, would not be thinking of exercising neither would he/she be able to afford recreational amenities/gym membership. The net result of this social/financial constraint is a reality that breeds up obesity by the singular fact of financial inability/social deficiency.
Some drugs are great at assisting one to gain extra and unwanted weight. Such drugs as contraceptives for women and ARV medication are classic examples.
When you are taking such drugs, it is thus common and all too natural to add on weight, especially if you’re not very great at exercising/indulge in other obesity ‘high risk behaviors’.
However, it is to be known and clearly understood that the net effect of drugs on the obesity question is quite minimal and completely negligible. Thus, if you keep fit and ensure that you do not eat serious junk, you’ll be great, irrespective of the drugs you are currently taking or the reputation of such drugs to ensure weight on humans.
6. Junk Food
Another serious cause of obesity is junk food – mostly processed foods exceedingly high in calories, low in nutrients and usually containing harmful synthetic chemicals.
These type of food, sadly, have become a hallmark of the 21st century and avoiding them altogether is almost next to impossible – if one one not VERY careful and conscious.
Very high in sugar content also, junk food, when taken consistently and over a period of time, can easily cause one to put on unwanted weight, weight that in the long run would easily cross the ‘obese’ border.
7. Genes/Family History
The genes one inherits from the general gene pool of the family to a lesser extent also makes one prone to obesity or at least, the reality of being overweight.
While this is a factor that can safely be ignored (if one takes care of one’s health properly and is aware of the prevailing condition in the family), it is nonetheless an issue that is serious enough to command a mention.
The gist is this: if your family is naturally predisposed to being obese, you are likely to also become obese, even if the actions/food you take are the same other folks of similar age (who are super fit and will never be obese, either in the long or short run).
If this is your reality, taking extra care and actually going the extra mile is the key to maintaining a fit and trim figure.
8. Lack of Education/Awareness
Finally, a chronic lack of either awareness or education can also result to steady, persistent and very dangerous obesity.
This manifests itself majorly in the largely illiterate population or in countries where the awareness level is very low.
In such countries (and amongst such less educated persons), obesity is not viewed as something to be avoided. As a matter of fact, in such countries as Indonesia, Kenya, Brazil and Ghana, obesity and stomach fat is actually linked to ‘good living’ or ‘evidence of well living’.
The net implication of this chronic lack of education or awareness results in both and women being more tolerant of putting on weight and at the extreme, going out of their way to ensure that they actually do put on fat on their bodies!
It is this sad and pathetic!
Recommended Reading: Am I Overweight?
How to Tackle Obesity Naturally at Home
Obesity, no matter the angle it is looked at isn’t something to court – or even tolerate.
However, for many, it is the reality of tackling it at home in a safe manner that is their greatest issue.
Here, we offer smart suggestions and quick ways to get fit at home naturally without the expensive gym membership or worse, a more expensive visit to the doctor.
Here we go:
- Opt in for a more active lifestyle…if you drive most of the time, try cycling (for instance).
- Cut out on sweet foods, drinks and junk. Cook your own food and drink mostly water 🙂
- Television is an enemy of fitness…find a way to ignore it – most of the time.
- Get educated about the health implications of obesity – and do not imagine that obesity is a source/sign of wealth.
- Eat as much as you need – and not a morsel more. If you feel the urge to eat more, simply replace it with the urge to exercise (more).
- Finally, commit to the business of slimming down. This can be achieved by taking stock of where you started off and your target at the end of the day. In between, kindly take note of your progress and be sure to see that you are actually recording remarkable improvements.
Wrap up on the ‘What is Obesity’ Question…
Obesity has been variously described and understood.
However, the standard definition of obesity is that which is derived from the BMI of the individual in question.
Using this index, a figure that is more than 30 indicates obesity, no more – no less.
Again, irrespective of the level of education of one or where he/she lives, this value is constant and is not (and cannot) be either variable or the result of ‘good living’ if it proves to read more than 30!