Tag: obesity

National Heart Month: Preventing Obesity & Heart Disease

Red heart shaped hand exercise ball with doctor physician's stethoscope on white background.

Red heart shaped hand exercise ball with doctor physician's stethoscope on white background.

There’s no mistaking that obesity is on the rise in America. Data shows that 41.9% of Americans are obese. Not only can obesity be uncomfortable and diminish one’s quality of life, but it can also contribute to other health conditions, like heart disease. In fact, if you’re obese, you’re over 20% more likely to develop heart disease.

In honor of National Heart Month, the team at BMI Surgery is discussing the connection between obesity and heart health, specifically the higher risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. Combat obesity and heart disease with the knowledge of how to prevent both. Keep on reading to learn more!

How Can Obesity Contribute to Heart Disease?

Heart disease is a general term for various heart conditions. When fat cells enlarge, chronic inflammation can occur by way of your hormones. Chronic inflammation can disrupt your insulin levels, which means your body may have trouble regulating blood sugar. The presence of long-term insulin resistance is called metabolic syndrome, which can make you much more likely to develop certain health conditions.

While high blood pressure isn’t a heart disease, it can lead to heart diseases like heart failure, heart attack, and arrhythmia. High blood pressure requires the heart to work harder to circulate blood to the rest of the body, which causes various heart problems, like heart failure, Peripheral artery disease (PAD), and coronary artery disease. In other cases, excess fat can build up in the arteries that carry blood to your heart. If these pathways are blocked, a heart attack or other heart ailments can occur.

Additionally, the extra work can cause the heart to enlarge, which can lead to heart failure. Obese people may experience heart arrhythmias (heart beats too fast or too slow) more frequently. This occurs when the left ventricle becomes too large with the extra effort required with excess body fat.

How Can I Prevent Obesity & Heart Disease?

The best measures to prevent obesity and heart disease are proper exercise and nutrition. If you have a family history of heart disease, your lifestyle and habits are especially important. We recommend speaking with your doctor about nutritional and exercise plans customized for your current weight.

If you’re not getting enough sleep, you may be raising your chances of developing obesity and heart disease. In fact, if you sleep fewer than six hours a night, you have a 20% higher risk of a heart attack. When you sleep, your heart rate lowers, and you’re less likely to crave salty and sweet foods that aren’t heart-healthy. To prevent heart disease and obesity, we advise seven to nine hours of sleep per night.

Can Weight Loss Surgery Treat Obesity?

Weight loss surgery can treat obesity! Also called bariatric surgery, weight loss surgery can reduce your stomach size to decrease food consumption and absorption. Weight loss surgery may be right for you if other weight loss methods haven’t been successful, like diet or exercise.

There are various weight loss surgeries available, such as laparoscopic gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy, and LAP-BAND®. Each surgery is a little different, but each can effectively treat obesity. After weight loss surgery, you’ll still need to maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine.

Celebrate National Heart Month & Reduce Your Risk

If you’re suffering from obesity, or know someone who is, we encourage you to seek treatment. A weight loss specialist can provide options for surgery, support groups, nutritional plans, and more. At BMI Surgery, we have been transforming bodies since 2002 and specialize in weight loss solutions that last for decades to come. Don’t let obesity affect your overall health and well-being– contact the experts today!

Begin Your Journey Towards a Healthier, Happier Life This February

Reduce your risk of heart disease this February! Our team at BMI Surgery can help you lose weight and offer expert advice to help you maintain your results! Call us at (205) 850-1973 or contact us online to transform your body today!

Obesity 101: Common Causes, Signs, & Symptoms

A female dietitian holding a diet plan during a consultation with a patient in the office.

A female dietitian holding a diet plan during a consultation with a patient in the office.

Over 40% of Americans are obese. While many of us know what obesity is, you may not know how dangerous it can be for one’s health. Those suffering from obesity are often at higher risk for health conditions such as high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, and some cancers.

While obesity rates are rising in America, this condition is preventable. The experts at BMI Surgery discuss obesity’s causes, signs, and symptoms so that you can educate yourself and those around you about the dangers of obesity. If you are struggling with obesity, there are treatments available–don’t hesitate to reach out to weight loss specialists.

What Is Obesity?

Obesity is characterized by excess body fat relative to one’s weight and is measured with the BMI (body mass index) scale. Obesity is often progressive and can change the way your body functions. Doctors consider anyone with a BMI greater than 30 as obese. However, there are three classes of obesity, each becoming more serious the higher the class.

The three types of obesity are broken into the first, second, and third classes. The following measurements are standards for doctors across America.

  • Class I obesity: BMI 30 to <35 kg/m².
  • Class II obesity: BMI 35 to <40 kg/m².
  • Class III obesity: BMI 40+ kg/m².

While often diminishing quality of life, obesity can impact one’s overall health. Obesity has been linked to Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, sleep apnea, metabolic syndrome, osteoarthritis, kidney disease, pregnancy problems, and certain types of cancer.

What Causes Obesity?

On the surface, obesity is caused by eating more calories consumed than burned. But every case of obesity is different, and there are often other factors that cause obesity. For example, certain medications or hormonal changes can increase your appetite and lead you to become obese. Additionally, certain genetic mutations cause hereditary obesity.

If you’re depressed, anxious, or stressed, you may eat more than your body can consume to cope with challenging emotions and feelings. Fast food and convenience foods are at our fingertips, and these foods often increase the process of gaining excess body fat. Additionally, living a very sedentary lifestyle while over-consuming food can quickly lead to obesity.

What Are the Symptoms of Obesity?

Beyond gaining weight, there are a few other symptoms of obesity you may notice. Some of these signs include:

  • Back pain
  • Joint pain
  • Insomnia
  • Excessive sweating
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Shortness of breath

If you notice you or a loved one developing symptoms of obesity, don’t hesitate to seek medical care. You may feel nervous about finding treatment, but a doctor can provide remedies to improve your quality of life and health.

What Are Treatment Options for Obesity?

There are many treatments available for obesity. At BMI Surgery, our doctors recommend losing a minimum of 5% to 10% of your total weight. This percentage may not seem like much, but even the most minor weight loss can significantly reduce your risk of developing health problems. Your weight loss specialist will recommend dietary treatments, exercise regimens, and other lifestyle changes.

Likewise, your doctor may prescribe certain medications that can decrease your appetite. Medication isn’t a long-term treatment but may be beneficial in the beginning. Similarly, another treatment option for obesity is weight loss surgery.

Is Weight Loss Surgery an Effective Treatment for Obesity?

Yes! Weight loss surgery, also known as bariatric surgery, reduces stomach capacity to lower food intake. Weight loss surgery isn’t performed unless other treatment methods haven’t worked, like diet or exercise changes, and your obesity must be impacting your health.

Common weight loss procedures include:

  • Sleeve gastrectomy
  • Laparoscopic gastric bypass
  • Orbera® gastric balloon
  • Revisional weight loss surgery

Begin Your Journey Towards a Happier & Healthier Life

Obesity can cause various health issues that may impact your well-being for years to come. Luckily, with some help from experts, you can find effective ways to treat obesity. While it may seem overwhelming to seek treatment, don’t hesitate to contact a doctor for the betterment of your physical and mental health.

If you’re interested in weight loss surgery or know of a loved one who may benefit, a Board-certified weight loss surgeon can help you lead a healthier, happier life. At BMI Surgery, we offer various types of weight loss surgery, support groups, nutritional and exercise advice, preparation class, and more.

Discover Weight Loss Surgery Options at BMI Surgery

Our surgeon, Dr. Long, is board-certified and has successfully performed weight loss surgeries for 20 years. Don’t wait to become the happiest, healthiest version of yourself—contact BMI Surgery today. To schedule an appointment or discuss your weight loss journey, call 205-850-1973 or contact us online.