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Weight control and obesity

Weight control and obesity Weight control and obesity

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This health problem, described by the WHO as the epidemic of the 21st century, has its origin in causes ranging from genetic inheritance, endocrine disorders, the influence of the environment, nervous system problems, the type of diet or activity physical. These last two factors, diet and physical activity, are related to most cases of overweight and obesity.

Experts warn that obesity is increasing alarmingly in Western countries as a result of the sedentary lifestyle of modern life and poor eating habits. It is believed that in the next twenty years the number of obese people will double. Currently, this disease affects more than two million Spaniards and is somewhat more frequent in women than in men.

43% of the Spanish population between 20 and 65 years old is overweight or obese. Being overweight, unlike obesity, is not a disease, although we must bear in mind that if it is not properly controlled it can end up leading to obesity.


WHAT is the appropriate WEIGHT?


                 weight in kilos
BMI = ——————–
                 height in m2


The appropriate weight can be known by calculating the Body Mass Index (BMI): the weight in kilos divided by the height in meters squared.

For example, a person who weighs 70 kilos and measures 1.65 meters will have a BMI of 70 / 1.65 x 1.65 = 25.72.

  • If the result is between 18.5 and 24.9, the weight is considered normal.
  • Between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight and,
  • from 30, obesity. In addition, after 30, the chances of suffering from certain diseases increase.


But not only the degree of obesity is a risk factor for various pathologies, but also influences the distribution of fat in the body. Thus, when more fat accumulates at the abdominal level, there is a greater risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, and when fat accumulates at the level of the buttocks and thighs, the associated problems are not of a metabolic type but rather aesthetic and localized at the level of the abdomen. lower limbs (circulation, knee osteoarthritis, etc.).


    BMI= 18.5-24.9
    BMI= 25-29.9
    BMI= >30




Although genetic factors cannot be modified, we can influence the case of environmental factors.

  • We can always try to eat a balanced diet
  • and maintain physical activity appropriate to the characteristics of each person.

It is very important to bear in mind that once obesity is established it is very difficult to reverse it and requires great effort and perseverance. Therefore, it is said that the best way to treat obesity is to prevent it.

  • Prevention should start from childhood, educating children so that they learn correct eating habits and promoting the practice of physical exercise from an early age. This infantile learning is fundamental, since it will condition the habits of the adult.
  • Other periods in which there is a tendency to gain weight are adolescence, pregnancy, middle age in women and after marriage in men.


Some recommendations


  • The first rule in the matter of obesity is not to allow yourself to gain weight. To prevent it, we must eat a balanced diet and exercise regularly, depending on age and individual physical characteristics (for example, practicing gymnastics, swimming or simply walking).
  • To lose weight, it is essential to have a balanced diet, eating everything but in moderation and depending on the energy needs of each one. Meals should be divided into 4 or 5 a day, avoiding snacks between meals. We must moderate the consumption of saturated animal fats, increase the consumption of fruits, vegetables and fish, try to eat slowly and chew well.
  • The benefits of losing weight, even if it is small, in an obese person, are more than worth the effort, since the risk of suffering from many diseases is reduced.
  • The treatment of obesity is a lifelong treatment. It requires effort, perseverance and being willing to change eating habits. We should not trust "miracle" products or "magic" diets that non-experts advise us. Food advice should always be individualized.


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