Obesity and Women

My cupboard is full of old clothes. But I love them– It will fit me next year !
My new year resolution would be to lose 10 kgs.
Oh the wedding season! Let me eat the thali, would start dieting from next week.
It’s my pregnancy fat! Don’t worry in few months would lose it.

Each one of us might have said the above mentioned lines sometime or the other. Blame it on our disinterest in health or the fact that we neglect our priority – Being Fit. Obesity has become a great issue for the western world; however we Indians live in a paradox. We might have a high population below the poverty line, with little or nothing to eat and on the other hand, we have the highest over weight population in South East Asia.

According to statistics the rising issue is women catching up with obesity early. Post pregnancy weight gain and secondary complications are gaining popularity. Obesity accompanied with Diabetes – Diabesity – is the new evil facing the women of today!

Obesity and Women Concern

Reasons for Indian women being obese:

  • Inactivity due to lifestyle – Work related or due to health issues such as infertility, osteoarthritis, sleep disorders, menstrual irregularities, etc.
  • Childhood indulgence being stretched into morbid obesity.
  • Change in eating pattern, preference to junk food.
  • Demanding life patterns – no time for a walk or any physical exercise.

It is important we understand that for important things we need to take out time. A 30 min walk early in the morning or choosing to walk instead of calling for a car or taxi is better. A delay of 15 minutes by walking is better for your tomorrow.

How can you know that you are obese?

The classification of obesity has typically been a comparison of height and weight (BMI) of the individual, more recently waist to hip ratio has taken over from BMI as an indicator of obesity.

BMI=Weight (kgs)/(Height in mts) 2

If your BMI is above 30 then you are obese. You need to take advice from specialists – Dieticians, Physiotherapists, etc to understand your body and opt for weight loss.

What is the problem in me?

Diagnosis of the reason of weight gain is essential. You need to meet specialists to understand your body. Weight gain could be due to hormonal imbalances – PCOD, Thyroid. However the right diagnosis is essential. If you are morbidly obese then there could be a number of associated secondary medical complications – diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol, heart disease, etc. After analyzing your situation you need to talk to medical specialists.

Advantages for opting for Bariatric Surgery?

The advent of Bariatric surgery has provided us with an important tool to deal with clinically severe obesity. Women significantly outnumber men in choosing this option worldwide. It not only helps in reducing weight but also ameliorates obesity related diseases.

Psychosocial aspects of obesity should not be overlooked especially in women. Appropriate counseling is required in almost all cases before suggesting any modality of treatment.

Cases of infertility are also on the rise along with obesity, such women should consider Bariatric surgery as an option as it has shown to have positive impact on infertility. Studies have shown that obese mothers have increased chances of developing pregnancy related complications and children born to obese mother have significantly high chances of developing adult obesity.

Increasing awareness of obesity and its related diseases specially among young women should remain paramount in our approach in dealing with this problem, as when you educate a women you educate her entire family. Be informed and be aware about your situation!