Weight loss is curiously one aspect of #Healthy-living (when necessary) that probably has more non-health professionals drumming up support for- many thanks to the media awash with ‘model celebrity body’ types. From both regular everyday people to the extremes people on crash diets, those with Anorexia Nervosa, to even recommended now diet pills, and Bariatric surgeries; many overweight or obese people seem to wonder at one common question: HOW DID I GET THIS FAT?
Obesity does not develop overnight. It is usually gradual and is a result of a number of factors that promotes excessive weight gain. Simply realizing this is a good place to start eliminating key factors where applicable. Here are some of such everyday living factors below (supposing there are no new additions like medications, hormonal contraceptives or the likes).
Possible causes of Obesity
- Age: We generally tend to put on weight with age. As one grows older, deposition of fat is is seemingly worse around the mid-lines, that is, the abdomen and waist. This is why people tend to add more weight in their forties and fifties.
- Genetics: This is one major determinant of weight accumulation tendencies. This is linked to family traits as a genetic base trait may disrupt the normal balance between energy intake and expenditure by acting to enhance fat storage. Take note of the emphasis on tendencies –which means that such a person has a much higher likelihood of being obese so needs to cautiously make behavioural modifications.
- Physical activity: Physically active people, that is, people that engage in one form of physical activity or the other or those whose job entails exertion of physical energy tend to be able to keep their weight under control. This is because, energy output (work done) will be equal or greater than energy intake (food intake) and this will leave them with zero energy balance or even a deficit. This is in addition to making them physically fit. I will say at this point that most of us though very busy, may not necessarily be physically active. This is because most white collar jobs are sedentary i.e. not much physical exertion is needed even though those jobs are mentally tasking. Therefore it is important for sedentary workers to deliberately find ways of increase their physical activity.
- Psychological factors: The pattern of food intake can be psychological. For example, some people don’t eat because they are hungry but because it is meal time or simply eat by the clock, while some others eat just because tasty food is available. On the other spectrum, a good number of people eat when they are depressed. Many people grew up with their parents serving food as reward bits, so they invariably habitually eat special servings of foods for satisfaction at the risk of frequently over-eating.
- Bad Dietary habits: This is a very important factor that contributes to excessive fat accumulation. Unhealthy and unwise food choices such as habitual intake of foods rich in saturated fats and oils, gluttony, in ordinate eating times, and excessive consumption of refined foods all have the ability to predispose one to being overweight and invariably obese.
- Social factors: These include cultural and family food patterns, job environment, recreational eating, etc most of which is not necessarily to stop hunger.