Obesity can be caused by some surprising factors. We break down a few known contributors and give tips for dealing with these factors.
There are various factors that can contribute to someone becoming obese. Below are a few known contributors and tips for dealing with these factors.
The environment is more than trees and air. It includes who and what is available in our areas. Some examples of environmental situations that might contribute to people becoming obese are:
- Easy access to junk and fast food
- No safe places to exercise or not enough affordable gyms
- Not many places that sell affordable healthy foods
- Public transportation that is cheap and easily accessible, making it less likely you will walk
- Less physically active lifestyles
Friends and family
It's not only your surroundings that can influence your weight, your family and friends can also play a role in packing on the pounds.
You might be used to eating fried chicken and rice at dinner with your family and going out to fast food restaurants late at night with your friends. Chances are that you are eating too much bad food in these situations.
Do your friends and family work out? If so, that's a great influence for you. However, if they spend most of their time sitting, watching too much TV and not getting exercise, this can be bad for your health and bad for your weight since you are most likely sitting right there with them!
TIP: Help yourself and help your family and friends by encouraging healthy habits. Take a walk instead of watching TV together or go to a friend's house for a healthy home-made meal instead of going to a fast food restaurant. For more tips on changes you can make, click here.
Other causes of obesity
There may be other reasons for why you may gain weight. Make sure you talk with your doctor about:
- Illness: Check with your doctor to see if you might have a medical condition that is causing you to gain weight or keeping you from losing weight.
- Lack of sleep: You may gain weight if you have trouble sleeping, but being overweight can also cause sleeping problems like sleep apnea. Check with your doctor if you can't sleep.
- Medications: Certain drugs like steroids may cause weight gain by making you:
- less able to burn calories
- more hungry
- retain water.
What you can do...
Everyone is different, so losing weight will be different for each person. However, here are some easy things you can do to help you lose weight and become healthier.
- Eat healthy: Have more fruits and veggies and cut down on fried foods and soda
- Get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day or almost everyday: Get off a bus or subway stop earlier and walk the rest of the way to your destination
TIP: Losing 5 to 10 percent of what you weigh now can help you become more healthy and possibly prevent type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. This means if you are 200 pounds, losing 10 to 20 pounds can start to do wonders for your health and make you feel better.
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