Obesity: It is actually the body fat, and it is different from the being overweight which means weighing too much. Weight can be from muscles, bones, fats and body water. But in our daily life both terms use for a person who is weighing more than what is consider normal for his height.
If you eat more calories than you consume, obesity come over time. The view that obese people eat little yet gain weight due to a slow metabolism is not generally supported. The balance between calories-in and calories-out differs for each person. Factors that might affect your weight include your genetic makeup, overeating, eating high-fat foods, and not being physically active.When excess body fat has accumulated to the extent then it may have a negative effect on health.And the obese person is prone to various diseases like diabetes mellitus, hypertension, coronary artery diseases, stroke etc.
Why do people become obese:
- Eating too much calories
- Sedentary life style
- Not sleeping enough
- Endocrine disturbances
- Lower rate of smoking (If a person is smoker and then he stopped smoking such person usually start gaining weight as smoking suppress appetite)
- Some medications (Anabolic steroids)
It is defined by body mass index. Now one will think that what is body mass index. The body mass index (BMI) is a statistical measurement derived from your height and weight. Although it is considered to be a useful way to estimate healthy body weight, it does not measure the percentage of body fat. The BMI measurement can sometimes be misleading – a muscleman may have a high BMI but have much less fat than an unfit person whose BMI is lower. However, in general, the BMI measurement can be a useful indicator for the ‘average person’. BMI can be calculated as.
BMI= Weight in kilogram/height in meter2
Weight gain is extremely common and the most frequent cause is simple obesity. So we can say that if we exclude simple obesity and pregnancy other conditions account for less than 1% of patients presenting with weight gain.
Hypothyroidism (cushing’s syndrome, polycystic ovarian syndrome)
Increase muscle (athletes, eg weight lifters, androgenic steroids and growth hormones)
Increased fluid (Cardiac failure, hepatic failure with ascites, renal failure like nephrotic syndrome)
Ask these questions.
First of all you should rule out pregnancy if a female patient present to you with weight gain. Second always ask about the dietary habits that may result in simple weight gain. Always ask about drugs to exclude the use of anabolic steroids and growth hormones especially in body builders.
Patient of cushing’s syndrome will present with hair growth, acne, abdominal striae, muscle weakness, back pain and depression as well.
Hypothyroidism patient may complain of lethargy, anorexia, cold intolerance, goiter, dry hair, dry skin constipation.
Polycysic ovarian syndrome in female can be presented with hirsutism, obesity and menstrual irregularities. It is also associated with insulin resistance.
Fluid retention from cardiac failure may be accompanied by symptoms of exertional dyspnea, orthopnea, paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea. Ascites and peripheral edema may also result from congestive heart failure.