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Are You Overweight?

There's a big elephant in your room that you wish wasn't there -- you or a loved one may be seriously overweight.

Nearly two of every three Americans are overweight or obese. If you were to gather 15 of your family members, friends or co-workers, almost 10 of them would be overweight.

Whether you're overweight or not, consider this:

  • The average lifespan of an obese person is shortened by more than ten years.
  • Obesity is associated with higher rates of chronic medical problems and a poorer quality of life than either alcohol abuse or smoking.
  • 80% of women say excess weight is damaging their health, ruining their sex lives, and holding back their careers.
  • 60% of overweight women will not allow their partner to see them naked.
  • Excess weight has been linked as a contributor to virtually every common chronic disease, including all of the major killers such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
  • 15% of children are overweight, and their rate of obesity is climbing sharply.

You would think, if being overweight is so unhealthy and so undesirable, that all of us would be on a weight control program. Part of the problem is that some are in a state of denial. A recent survey showed that only 39% of adults considered themselves overweight, although 61% are actually overweight or obese.

But most of the problem is due to a variety of factors, primarily a poor quality diet, and lack of exercise. Hormonal imbalances such as insulin resistance and low thyroid or adrenal function also play a major role.

Chronic stress leads to "emotional overeating" and creates high levels of stress hormones that contribute to central abdominal obesity. Excess belly fat, compared to fat elsewhere in the body, increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke in middle age. Stress management is a vital component of permanent weight loss.

Fortunately, there is an answer. The most effective way to lose weight is to be evaluated by your physician so that the causes of your weight gain can be properly identified. Then, it is possible to develop a tailored, supervised weight loss program that is safe and permanent.

By the way, just intentionally "trying" to lose weight increases your lifespan. So if you're having a problem with weight, talk to one of our physicians. Even if you don't lose much weight, just making the effort makes a big difference in your health.