What is Obesity and How to Prevent Obesity
These days, obesity has become a tremendous and a fatal health issue. This problem is not only in India but in other countries also. Even in united States of America, one out of three adults and one out of five children and teenagers are facing the problem of obesity. In UK also, we are sailing in the same boat. Most of the people since childhood, fall prey to obesity in most of the countries of the world.
In fact, “Obesity is that condition of the body in which the amount of fat increases at extreme level.” in other words, obesity can be defined as “the condition when a person weighs 20 percent or more than the ideal weight.”
In the state of obesity the body weight of the individual is always more in comparison to height. Due to a number of health risks of obesity, it has declared a disease. It has been observed that obese persons usually fall prey to diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, arthritis, osteoarthritis, flat foot, respiratory problems, varicose veins and liver malfunction, etc.
Generally, the questions arise: What should be the ideal body weight of an individual? who is obese and who is not? Different methods are used in various countries to know the obesity of an individual.
Best method to know the obesity is BMI (Body Mass Index). If you want to know your body mass index, then divide your body weight in kg by your height in meter square viz.
The WHO Criteria for Overweight and Obesity by BMI
Normal Weight 18.5-24.9
Obesity Class I 30-34.9
Obesity Class II 35-39.9
Obesity Class III >40
So, you can come to know about your position after having a glance at these criteria.
Obesity can be prevented easily with the help of two types of preventive measures-
- Exercise-related Preventive Measures
- Diet-related Preventive measures
In fact, these two preventive measures are directly related to exercise and lifestyle management.
How to Prevent Obesity Through Exercise
These measures play a very vital role in preventing the obesity. The following measures related to exercise can be used to prevent obesity:
- Regular Physical Exercise: Regular physical exercises can do wonders in preventing obesity. Children need an hour of moderate to vigorous exercises everyday if they want to prevent obesity. They should do aerobic activity for at least 60 minutes per day. These exercises or aerobic activities can be in various forms, such as jogging, running, cycling and dancing etc. For aerobic activities an intensity of 55 to 60 percent of the maximum heart rate should be set.
- To Play Games and Sports Regularly: Playing games and sports regularly is also beneficial for preventing obesity. Children should play various games/sports like football, basketball, hockey, handball, swimming and athletics etc. regularly at least for one hour. Make it a regular phenomenon for the whole lifespan.
- Weight Training Exercises: Earlier, Weight training exercises are very powerful in preventing obesity. Research studies indicate that weight training programs are safe and very much effective for avoiding and treating obesity, if managed correctly.
- Resistance Exercises: These exercises are not only safe and best for curing and preventing obesity but can also improve muscular strength and increase the strength of tendons, ligaments and bones. It is generally recommended that these exercises should focus on the proper exercise techniques and number of repetitions rather than the amount of weight lifted. In a single set, 12 to 16 repetitions should be done with moderate resistance.
- Yogic Exercises: Yoga is very powerful in preventing obesity. Yogic exercises can help a lot in preventing and curing obesity. For Example, pranayama and yogic asanas specially meditative asanas are helpful in preventing and curing obesity
Research studies have showed that stress and tension tend to increase obesity. Meditative asanas are very beneficial in relieving stress and tension. Therefore, yogic exercises can also prevent and cure obesity.
How to Prevent Obesity through Diet
These preventive and curative measures are related to diet. In these measures, the emphasis is laid down upon the reduced intake of calories.
- Avoid Fatty Food: If you want to prevent obesity, you should avoid fatty foods in your diet. Fats are known to have maximum number of calories. These extra calories will be accumulated in your body. So avoid fatty foods, if you want to remain slim and trim.
- Avoid Junk and Fast Foods: Try to avoid junk and fast foods such as pizza, burger, chips, cookies, pastry, chocolate and cold drinks etc., if you want to prevent obesity. These food-stuffs are also rich in calories. Intake of such foodstuffs leads to obesity
- Avoid Overeating: In order to prevent obesity, you should not overeat. It means that you should eat the food according to the necessity of your body. Assume, you require 2,500 calories per day, then you should take foods that consist of only 2,500 calories. If you take 3,000 calories per day, the 500 calories will be accumulated daily as fat in your body. So, you should avoid overeating.
- Don’t eat frequently: You should not develop a habit to eat frequently. The people who eat frequently typically take extra calories. hence, they become obese. So, always avoid to eat frequently to prevent obesity.
- Avoid Rich Carbohydrated Food: In order to prevent obesity, avoid rich carbohydrated food. But we don’t mean to say that you should not take carbohydrate food. Carbohydrate is very important to increase the level of energy. So, you should reduce the amount of carbohydrate in your diet not stop taking it. For this reason, try to avoid sugar, rice, potatoes, toffees, chocolate and other sweets.
- Don’t Skip Meals: Don’t skip your meals, such as breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you skip your meal, the next time you will definitely do overeating which may lead to obesity. In fact, skipping meals increases hunger and it results in greater food consumption next time.
- Take Low Calorie Diet: To prevent obesity, you should take low calorie diet but you should not give up the essential constituents of food. It should be nutritious one.
- Avoid Alcohol, Smoking and Drugs: Always keep it in mind that alcohol, smoking and drugs always lead to obesity. Alcohol is directly absorbed from stomach in the blood streams and easily stored as fat. It is also applicable in case of smoking and drugs. So never use such things, if you want to remain fit and slim.
- Balancing the Intake and Expenditure of Calories: For preventing obesity, you should always try to make balance between your intake of calories and expenditure of calories. For implementing it, try not to eat more calories than your body burns each day. Always stick to your eating plan even on holiday or function.
If your intake of calories is more than you require, the excess calories are stored as fat in the body. Too much stored fat increases your BMI and makes it difficult to return to goal weight and your shape again. put more stress on the following points for balancing the intake and expenditure of calories:
- When you take more calories than you require doing your daily activities, your body stores extra calories as fat in body and as result of that you gain weight.
- When you take less number of calories than your expenditure, you lose weight.
- When your intake and expenditure of calories remain same, you body weight also remains the same.
It can be concluded that if you want to prevent obesity, you should act effectively on both types of preventive measures. Dieting and exercise alone is not enough for preventing obesity. you should do vigorous exercise and also reduce the intake of calories. Don’t rely on the products related to diet, which are being sold in the market.
In fact, these weight-reducing products are not helpful in reducing the weight permanently. These products are being sold just to grab the money from your pockets. These products also create disturbance in hormones secretion which may develop many problems.