Do you remember what it felt like the last time you tried to have a baby?
You wanted to just run away and hide from the people asking you “When will you have a baby?”…
Do you remember how it felt when they compared you to your siblings or cousins?
And remember, what did your doctor said about the problems of you couldn’t conceive was because of your current weight?
I’m not being judgmental here.
I just want to help you achieving what’s good for health and highlight the reasons to lose weight.
As you know, more than two-thirds of the U.S population are obese and overweight.
It’s not only happening in U.S.
Obesity is a major problem around the world nowadays.
The Importance of Weight Loss
#1: It Decreases The Risk of Having Cardiovascular Diseases and Other Illnesses
You know it’s like a vicious cycle.
If you are obese (your Body Mass Index, BMI >30), you have higher chances to develop high blood cholesterol level.
Body Mass Index = weight [kg] / height [m²]
For example, a woman of 1.55m height, weighing of of 160 pounds , to get a BMI of 30.
So that’s how we calculated Body Mass Index.
You can use the BMI Calculator HERE .
An obese or overweight person can develop high cholesterol level due to :
- Increase production of bad cholesterol (LDL) by the liver
- Decrease clearance of bad cholesterol (LDL) from the blood
It is merely due to obesity changes the way how your body handle cholesterol.
Next, this high blood cholesterol level will cause changes in your blood vessels, especially the large ones.
It will form a big plaque and embed in the vessel wall.
Together with inflammatory changes in the blood vessel wall due to obesity (swelling) , this will lead to decrease in the internal diameter of the vessel wall.
This will further lead to increase resistance to pump blood through the vessels , and later, in long term, causes high blood pressure.
Another disease you can get is Type 2 Diabetes.
This is due to insulin resistance developed in obesity.
Insulin is a hormone produced by an organ, named pancreas, that is responsible for transporting excessive blood sugar into working cells – fat cells, muscles and liver.
In obese patients, they are prone to develop Type 2 Diabetes, meaning they have enough amount of insulin to function but the hormone is less sensitive to the working cells receptors.
This means that the hormones exist but can’t be triggered to work.
This leads to high blood sugar level or hyperglycemia.
Chronic presence of high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes will affect the heart sooner or later.
Why hypertension and Type 2 diabetes lead to heart attack?
- Blood vessel changes in hypertension, causing the heart to work more than usual to pump the blood through the small vessels. As described earlier, the peripheral vessels are smaller and constrictive. Later, the heart will undergo changes that cause its wall to become thicker ie. cardiomyopathy. In long term, it can lead to a form of heart failure.
- If you are diabetic, high blood sugar level will damage the vessels in the heart. The internal diameter of those vessels will become small and affect its function to deliver enough oxygen to the heart muscles. You will get necrosis of the heart. This is called heart attack.
Another complication of high blood pressure and high sugar level are kidney failure.
Kidneys are important organs in regulating normal blood pressure and release toxins from the body.
Hypertension and diabetes will damage the kidneys vessels as well.
This will result in accumulation of fluid in the body, as you cannot pass urine in late stage of kidney failure, as well accumulation in other body parts, such as in the lungs and face.
That’s why you should know the importance of weight loss in Type 2 diabetes; to avoid all the complications or organ damages.
Not to forget, how the diseases will cause stroke in latter.
The mechanism is similar as in the heart attack, which it causes damage to the blood vessels of the brain, leading to decrease oxygen delivery to the surrounding cells.
Several possible mechanisms can lead to increasing risks of developing cancer among obese people.
- Long-term inflammation in the obese people. Inflammation is the body process or reaction when there is a trigger. It’s the way our body protect the cell from outside harm – toxins, bacteria, virus.
- Decrease immunity.
- Excessive fat cells cause overproduction of oestrogens – increase risk of breast, uterine or ovarian cancer.
- Insulin resistance can promotes development of colon, kidney and prostate cancer.
Obese patients likely to have joint pain. That’s what we called osteoarthritis of knee and hip joints.
The inflammation in the joints occur due to long-term changes in the joints as result of weight-bearing.
The lower body (hip and knees) can no longer support the heavy part of upper body.
This causes you knees become bowing and inflamed (swollen, painful).
Another joint pain that you can experience is the foot pain, especially during walking or initial stepping.
This is called plantar fasciitis.
It is inflammation of the tissues in the foot plantar as result of excessive weight endurance.
Back pain – Our spine is most effective in its neutral position.
The spine has normal curves.
If you are obese, it causes abnormal forward placement of the pelvis and changes the curve to be excessively inward.
As the result, the added weight leads to abnormal pressure on back muscles, that are forced to bear the excessive weight.
#2: Improve Immunity and Decrease Allergy
Some data shows that obesity leads to changes in the immunity.
It is why you tend to develop colds , allergic rhinitis more common than others.
#3: Prevent Sleep Apnea
Imagine your upper airway collapses during sleeping.
Fat in the airway narrows the space.
It’s like a block of rock collapses inside tunnel.
You stop breathing during sleeping.
This can repeatedly occur during you sleeping, which is dangerous.
You also tend to snore during sleeping, which will disturb your partner.
Obese people likely to have poor sleep quality, as mentioned above.
They are also difficult to fall asleep.
#4: Reduce Risk of PCOS
PCOS or polycystic ovarian syndrome is a genetic disorder.
But, obesity increases the chances to have PCOS.
This is due to insulin resistance, that leads to hyperandrogenism (increase male hormones).
Women with PCOS are characterised by:
Impaired fertility (inability to conceive)
Amenorrhea (no menses)
Hirsutism (excessive growth of hair in male-like pattern)
#5: Decrease Inability to Conceive (Infertility)
As mentioned earlier, obesity leads to insulin resistance, which in return, causing excessive production of male hormones (hyperandrogenism).
These 2 conditions result in ovary dysfunction ie. unable to produce mature oocytes to fertilize with sperm.
In some obese people, they may experience no menses at all (amenorrhea), which make them impossible to get pregnant as there will be no mature oocytes produced.
#6: Decrease Problems with Menses
Why does losing weight affect your period?
Mechanism is similar to infertility above.
#7: Reduce Pre-Menstrual Syndrome
There is low level of progesterone in obese person, affecting neurotransmitter in the brain, that controls the mood.
#8: Improve Acne
Acne in obesity is related to hyperandrogenism, increased insulin and growth hormones.
#9: Increase Sexual Function and Sex Drive
There is no exact mechanism or conclusion why obesity leads to decrease sexual function.
But, the study concluded that Yes, it can cause such results.
This means you are no longer interested in sex.
The worst , you experience sexual dysfunction as erectile dysfunction (unable to maintain penile erection for sexual activity) , and many more.
#10: Gain Confidence
Of course by losing weight, you look stunning in front of your spouse and colleagues.
You can wear anything you like and become confident to take pictures in front of camera.
#11: Better Performance at Job
Obesity is often related with poor sleep quality.
As you know, good sleep is important in maintaining your energy and stamina next day.
It also determines how good your mood will be.
The whole things will affect your performance at work.
#12: Influence on Mind , Learning and Memory
A study demonstrated that there is 50% increase risk of dementia in obesity.
There is leptin resistance in obesity.
Leptin is a hormone, known for satiety.
But, it also promotes nerves growth in the brain, responsible for memory and learning.
#13: Ability to Being Active and Enjoy Many Physical Activities
You know you can’t involve in many physical activities if you are obese.
Such activities are: skating, snowboarding, marathon.
#14: Decrease Pregnancy Complications
My friend asked why should you lose weight before getting pregnant.
Pregnancy itself carries a high risk of complications.
Being obese, will add on another risks.
Those risks include:
- Higher risk to get high blood pressure and diabetes (gestational hypertension and diabetes)
- Pre-eclampsia , eclampsia – Risk of getting seizures among high blood pressure mothers
- Big baby as result of diabetes
- Birth defects
- Children with tendency to have childhood obesity and asthma
#15: Decrease Surgical and Delivery Complications
Obese people are high risk group for surgery and delivery.
You are likely to have heart complications during surgery, especially if it’s done under general anesthesia.
#16: To Motivate and Inspire Others
#17: Save Money
You have so much to do to lose weight.
And most of them, need more money than ever.
You will spend money on various weight loss programs and workouts.
When Should You Lose Weight?
How do i know if need to lose weight?
By calculating your Body Mass Index. If you are overweight or obese, it’s time to lose some pounds and live healthily.
Below are BMI levels.
Another criteria to monitor if you are overweight or obese is by measuring size of waist (waist circumference).
You just need to use a measuring tape. Put the tape above your hipbones and measure across the waist.
Normal waist circumference for men is below 40 inches , and for women, below 35 inches.
Why do you want to lose weight?
Ask yourself. Make a list of the reasons to lose weight and find your BIG WHY.
This will ensure you a good motivation to start taking actions and efforts.
Read my other article HERE on “Why aren’t you losing weight?“