Obesity is Getting Bigger

We’re overweight and getting fatter. Almost 2 in 3 Australian adults are overweight or obese. In 2014-15, 63.4 percent of us big people were overweight or obese. This figure has shockingly swollen from 56.3% in 1995. We need to lose weight. 

Am I overweight? Two commonly ways to estimate whether your weight is healthy or not are body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference. I prefer the latter. BMI measures total weight and this figure doesn’t tell you whether the weight is fat or muscle. Waist circumference measures belly or visceral fat… the toxic stuff that suffocates and poisons our organs.

Location. Location. Location. Be careful where you store the fat.

Hip and thigh fat has hormonal benefits in women but this isn’t the case with belly fat. Fat in our midsection – packed around our internal organs – can cause big time hurt and those who carry the extra kilos on their stomachs are at a much higher risk of chronic disease than those who carry it on their hips and thighs.

Check your Waist Measurement

To measure self: halfway between your lowest rib and the top of your hipbone, roughly just below your belly button.

Waist measurement.jpg
Waist measurement
 

Men

 

Women

 

Risk

 

Waist Measurement (cm)

 

 

 Waist Measurement (cm)

 

Under 94

 

Under 80

 

Healthy

 

 

94 to 102

 

0 to 88

 

Increased risk

 

 

102 to 110

 

88 to 100

 

Substantially increased risk

 

 

Over 110

 

Over 100

 

High risk

Obesity is not a disease. It’s not viral or bacterial. It’s a symptom.  It’s predominately a symptom of lifestyle and aside from conditions such as thyroid complications, it’s self-imposed.

And the good news? It’s reversible.

The bad news?  Untreated, it’s a major risk factor in the onset of two common lifestyle diseases…

Diabetes

Diabetes is the fastest growing chronic condition and health challenge in Australia.

  • 1.7 million Australians have diabetes
  • 280 Australians develop diabetes every day… that’s 1 person every 5 minutes!!!
  • 2 million Australians are at high risk of developing diabetes

Diabetes makes heart disease more likely

Heart disease is the primary cause of death in diabetic sufferers. 65% of heart disease deaths in Australia occur in diabetics. Other diabetic-linked health problems…

  • Leading cause of blindness
  • Leading cause of impotence
  • Leading cause of kidney damage
  • Leading cause for loss of lower limbs
  • Doubles the risk of dementia

Why? Prolonged exposure to high blood sugar levels can permanently damage delicate nerve fibres and tiny blood vessels (diabetic neuropathy). Why this happens isn’t clear but it’s believed to be due to the complex interaction between nerves and blood vessels.

Heart Disease (HD)

44,000 HD deaths in 2015 (30% of all deaths)

HD kills 1 Australian every 12 minutes

  • Leading cause of death
  • 55,000 Australians suffered a heart attack last year… that’s one every 9 minutes

The human cost is ugly. And the bill? It ain’t pretty either. Diabetes alone, the medical outlay is pushing $15 billion. According to Diabetes Australia, “Diabetes is the epidemic of the 21st century and the biggest challenge confronting Australia’s health system.” Our bigness is costing plenty.

If you don’t want to become part of the cost and you’re carrying, ask yourself is it worth the risk not to eat less, not to eat differently not to move more?

Don’t convince yourself you’re invincible.  Don’t convince yourself that all the dreaded and scary stuff…

  • the blindness
  • kidney failure
  • loss of limbs etc

…is medical fantasy. Fear-based denial can be the cruellest of companions. It can happen to you.

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Diabetic amputee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get healthy. Eat smart. Train smart.

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