Obesity quite simply is too much body fat. It is a problem of truly epic and epidemic proportions. The condition is defined as a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or above. About 1/3 of Americans are obese and another 1/3 are overweight and it is getting worse. Mississippi has the highest rate – about 35% of the population! Colorado is the lowest at 20%. The main problem it causes is type 2 diabetes with all its attendant dangers (which see), although other serious complications include, among others, hypertension, heart disease, stroke, neurological problems, some cancers and obstructive sleep apnea. There is sometimes a genetic component, but most often it is caused by excessive caloric intake combined with lack of sufficient exercise.
The condition is usually best treatable with a healthy, active lifestyle of reduced calories, avoidance of junk foods and increased physical activity. Sufficient weight loss can reduce all of the aforementioned risks, even to the point of curing the diabetes. It is best to avoid fad diets and herbal remedies, as they are mostly ineffectual and a waste of money. Guidance from a dietician or physician should be sought. And there are of course prescription medications that will help and bariatric surgery to reduce the food capacity of the stomach can be very beneficial.
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