The Global Epidemic that is Obesity


Last week the British medical journal The Lancet released a report stating that obesity is a bigger health crisis around the world than hunger is. It is also the leading cause of disabilities worldwide.

This report, called the Global Burden of Disease, was the product of the contributions from almost 500 researchers from 50 countries. These researchers compared and studied data and health trends from 1990 to 2010. They concluded that there is a massive shift in global health trends. This trend shows a shift from commincable diseases affecting more people worldwide to noncommunicable diseases affecting more people worldwide.

According to Ali Mokdad, co-author of the study and professor of global health at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, immunizations are preventing children from dying from infectious diseases. “However, the world is now obese and we’re seeing the impact of that,” he said.

The report also revealed that there has been an 82% increase in obesity globally in the past 2 decades, with the exception of sub-Saharan Africa. As Middle Eastern countries adopted the western lifestyle within the last 20 years, their obesity rates have risen 100%.

“The so-called Western lifestyle is being adapted all around the world, and the impacts are all the same,” Mokdad said.

The report also mentioned how people are living longer on average, but the quality of that extra life is not good. According to the report, on average, people are ill and in pain for the last 14 years of their lives.

“We’ve figured out how to keep the person who suffered a stroke alive, but they’re living disabled for years afterwards,” said Mokdad. “All these problems are tied to obesity. We’re even seeing a large percentage of people suffering back pain now. If we could lower the obesity rates, we’d see the numbers of noncommunicable diseases and pain decrease as well.”

According to Dr. Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organization, noncommunicable diseases are a global challenge of “epidemic proportions”. Dr. Chan said in a speech to the U.N. General Assembly that noncommunicable diseases are a “slow motion disaster” that could eventually cost many countries astronomical amounts of money in health care costs.

Noncommunicable diseases are type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and other preventable diseases of modern society. The key is that these diseases are preventable. They can be prevented by watching what you eat and primarily by exercising. These problems are made worse the more sedentary someone is. If they work sitting at a desk all day and then go home and sit in front of the computer, then these preventable and noncommunicable diseases will get worse and worse.

According to a 2011 report by the World Economic Forum and Harvard School of Public Health, noncommunicable diseases will cost more than 30 trillion dollars in the next 20 years. Health care related costs are already the leading cause of bankruptcy in our society. As the epidemic of obesity progresses, millions more could be pushed into poverty by upcoming health care costs, economists say.

The focus has to be on preventing these issues in the first place, rather than treating them once they have flaired up. It is much easier to prevent a fire then it is to put it out. This pertains very well to the body. You just have to do some maintenance on your body. Y

Have to change the oil in your car, you have to brush your teeth. You are using your muscles every second of every day of your life, even if you are sitting down. Therefore you have to do some maintenance on your muscles and body.

The average person gains 1 to 2 pounds per year. Over the course of 20 years that could accumulate to 20 to 40 extra pounds. Take into account also that it is much easier to put on weight than it is to lose it. Since it took so long to put on the weight, you can’t expect to take it off in one month, or even one year. Putting the weight on was a long term process, so taking it off will be a long term process as well. And any diet or exercise system that says it is not a long term process is lying.

You have to look at things long term. You aren’t going to burn off all that excess weight in a month. You have to start out slowly. You will slowly chip at that excess weight every time you go for a walk or exercise. Every time you skip dessert or eat some fruit or vegetable you are slowly chipping away at those extra pounds. If you work at it consistently then you will see a difference. It is not a matter of if, it is a matter of when, if you are exercising consistently and watching what you eat.

Even if you exercise consistently, you may not lose much weight. This is because muscle weighs more than fat does. As you put on muscle by exercising, you will re-shape your body and may even put on a few pounds. But the weight that you put on will not be fat, and since you will be putting on muscle, your body will be re-shaping itself. You will look better, and feel better since you will be more stabile due to your new muscles. You will also be healthier. Studies have shown that if you are exercising consistently and still overweight, you will be healthy and will not be subject to the health issues associated with being obese. These health issues associated with being obese are all of the noncommunicable diseases that are discussed in that report. If you exercise and are still obese, you will not have the biological markers that are present in someone who is obese and not exercising.

It can be hard to get into exercise and start eating right. The older you get, the harder it gets to break old habits and create new habits. I am always willing to make a change that will give me even the slightest possibility of living longer and living more comfortably. Especially when reports like this one come out talking mentioning that people are living longer but many of those last years are painful.

I have read studies that show that people aged 86 to 92 can benefit from exercising. If they feel better from exercise at their age, then at our age we can feel better from even mild exercise. And the longer we exercise, the longer we feel better.

The Pain Free Lifestyle program will break down step by step how to get into exercise by slow, easy to stick with steps. I incorporate the same philosophy to my nutrition program. Slow, easy to stick with steps.

Studies show that in order to benefit from exercise and eating right, you have to do it consistently. The best way to incorporate exercise and eating right into your lifestyle is through small and consistent steps.

Don’t be a global statistic, start feeling better through exercise and proper nutrition. Lose weight, feel better and relieve pain the Pain Free way.