Copyright 2006 David Maillie
Obesity has been actively argued as being derived from poor diet and then others state it is mostly caused by genetics and a persons DNA will make them more likely to have obesity. Regardless which school of thought you choose to believe in, obesity causes undue stress on the body from the circulatory system to the skeletal system. If left unchecked, obesity will cause weakness, breakdown, cardiac arrest and death.
Obesity is an unhealthy increase in body weight. This body weight places added stress to the heart and circulatory system as it must not only work to feed and fuel more cells, but it must also work harder as the body is pushed harder to carry this additional weight. Depending on how obese one is can really multiply this cardiovascular stress.
On a recent show on TLC they showed the short life of an 750 pound man John Keitz. The episode chronicled the last few years of his life and the toll that morbid obesity can take on ones body. He lived to be 39 years old and died from an infection. His body had basically given up. He did, however embark on a rehabilitation program after having been bed ridden for 7 years. Its just the stress and damage caused by being obese for so long had already weakened his body. How can this happen? How does one become obese or morbidly obese?
Is it their fault or is it genetics. It is probably a combination of the two as there are some people that are naturally obese and there are those that are naturally skinny or even anorexic. Regardless, diet does play a role. John Dietz loved fried chicken, potato chips and junk food. Its hard to say that if he had replaced that with health food that he would not have been obese, but he probably would have been less obese and even mobile. His extreme weight caused his legs to literally unbuckle or give out. People with lesser cases of obesity may not have their legs giving out, but they will have similar problems developing from the extra weight. Skeletal problems like bad hips, deformed and malformed bones, bad joints, necessary hip and knee replacements, and other injuries associated with obesity.
There are several things that work for treating obesity, but it is basically a change of lifestyle that is needed to make a permanent change to a healthier body. Yes, diet does play a major role. A healthy diet consisting of the major food groups and high in protein and low in carbohydrates like the South Beach Diet is very helpful in weight loss. The South Beach Diet is a realistic diet and can be achieved. Dont pay attention to unrealistic diet ads like lose 20 pounds in one week. This is impossible and if it were it would be a crash diet and very unhealthy or even risky. For a good idea of what it takes to lose weight for all kinds of people and all kinds of body shapes and ages watch the TV show The Greatest Loser. It shows two groups of B rated stars trying to see which can lose more weight and features a workout guru, psychologist and renowned doctor. You can learn a lot about dieting, fitness, and even trials, tribulations and hardships they go through.
Along with a diet like the South Beach Diet, proper exercise is the key. Lack of exercise is not only a constituent of obesity, but just plain unhealthy. Exercise helps everything from weight loss to mental health. It is key to remember that a physician should be seen prior to starting any new diet or physical activity. For one that doesnt ordinarily exercise it is best to start slow with walks and other low impact exercise like slow jogging, These are aerobic exercises and will build up the bodies cardiovascular system, increase metabolism, and add to the effectiveness of any weight loss diet.
After ones fitness has been built up gradually, running is a great weight loss activity and there isnt anything better. There are all kinds of infomercials on TV about everything from cardio boxing to dance aerobics, etc. These do work and can have great results, but require a lot of motivation to do it every day in front of a TV. Most people that purchase these programs have good intentions, but these intentions become like New Years resolutions and are quickly put off or forgotten. Running is better as you can constantly change your scenery and explore new roads, parks, terrain, etc. It is even better if you can find some running buddies. Join a local running club. There are thousands of running groups and they are in almost every city. One of the biggest helps to losing weight is to have some friends in the same boat as you. What better way than to run it off than with a local running club?