5 Obesity Effects that Have Nothing to do with Your Waistline

When we think of obesity effects, we tend to think about size. It usually calls to mind thoughts of bathroom scales and waistline measurements. However, this condition is a disease, not a size. Its impact on the body is far greater than needing a larger clothing size.

When an individual’s body mass index (BMI) is high enough, they are at risk of a number of obesity effects. Many – if not all – those symptoms can be reduced or eliminated through weight loss. Consider the following ways obesity can affect the body beyond merely waist size. For many people, one of the best diet pill benefits goes beyond losing weight, but that they improve their physical and mental health as they do.

Obesity Effects #1: Fatty Liver

Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is the most common disease in the United States. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data shows that 29 million Americans are affected by this condition. The more overweight you are, the more your weight contributes to this condition.

Obesity Effects #2: Sleep Apnea

Many people who suffer from obesity experience additional obstruction to the upper airways. This can be caused by raised levels of neck fat, enlarged tongue or enlarged tonsils. Losing the weight can reduce those issues and help to reduce or eliminate the risk.

Obesity Effects #3: Cancer

There are many cancer risks that are worsened by excess weight. These include breast, pancreas, endometrial, colon, esophageal, gallbladder, thyroid and kidney cancers. The additional body fat boosts estrogen levels, which raise cancer risk. It also boosts the leptin adipokine, which could stimulate cancer cell growth.

Obesity Effects #4: Heart Disease in You and Your Children

Many people know that their own risk of heart disease rises when they are obese. However, many people don’t realize that one of the obesity effects of this nature impacts their kids, too. Children of parents, particularly mothers, with obesity are at a 90 percent higher chance of heart disease or cardiovascular issue-related death. Use a BMI calculator to determine if you are at risk of heart disease based on your weight.

Obesity Effects #5: More Sick Days from Work

A study in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine showed that people who suffer from obesity are more likely to need to take time off work. They are more likely to need time away from the job for illnesses directly or indirectly linked with their excess weight. According to researchers, obesity among American workers costs companies $8.65 million per year.

Beyond the Physical

Those were issues primarily involving the physical health.  That said, obesity effects can stretch beyond that level and can reach into the mind, as well.  Mental health can suffer as a result of having this disease.  Therefore, if you suffer from the following in combination with being overweight or obese, it may be worth considering discussing the potential impact of weight loss on your mental health.

Depression and Anxiety

Among the obesity effects that many people don’t realize are very strong is the increased risk of depression and anxiety when you’re quite overweight.  There is a direct relationship between the brain and the body.  Indeed, there are many causes of depression and anxiety.  Most of them have absolutely nothing to do with body weight.  However, it is worth recognizing that this can be a contributing factor.

The reason for this is because excessive body weight has a direct influence on the brain itself.  The brain isn’t something that always stays the same.  Instead, it is always building new pathways, altering its shape, and evolving the way in which it functions.  It is directly impacted by nutrition, exercise, sleep, stress levels, exposure to toxins, blood flow and a spectrum of other factors.

When the brain loses its health due to the impact of any of these various factors, including body weight, the mind’s wellness suffers, too.  Anxiety and depression disorders are among the most common ways that people are affected.

Memory and Concentration Struggles

As body weight rises out of its healthy range, the brain actually shrinks in size.  This means that whether you are overweight or obese, your brain has experienced a size reduction. This obesity effect may be quite mild, or it could contribute to momentary or chronic feelings of brain fog.  It can make it more challenging for you to recall information, or even to come up with a word. This can be worsened when anxiety is also a factor.

If your body weight is higher than your healthy range and you have noticed that you are struggling with memory or recall issues, it’s a good idea to speak with your doctor about the potential benefits of losing some weight.  This is particularly true if you intend to achieve weight loss through healthy nutrition, exercise, sleep and stress control as these factors all work together.