Health Risks Associated With
Obesity is not just a cosmetic problem. It's a health hazard. Someone
who is 40% overweight is twice as likely to die
prematurely as is an average-weight person. This is
because obesity has been linked to several serious
medical conditions, including:
Doctors generally agree that the more obese a person
is the more likely he or she is to have health problems.
People who are 20% or more overweight can gain
significant health benefits from losing weight. Many
obesity experts believe that people who are less than
20% above their healthy weight should still try to lose
weight if they have any of the following risk factors.
- Family history of certain chronic diseases.
People with close relatives who have had heart
disease or diabetes are more likely to develop these
problems if they are obese.
- Pre-existing medical conditions. High
blood pressure, high
cholesterol levels, or high blood sugar levels
are all warning signs of some obesity-associated
- "Apple" shape. People whose weight is
concentrated around their stomachs may be at greater
risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, or
cancer than people of the same weight who are
"pear-shaped" (they carry their weight in their hips