March 29, 2015
Body composition consists of fat and fat free mass in the body. It is the proportion amongst those two. People who have a healthy body composition have a lower fat mass while having a higher fat free mass at the same time. People with a body composition that includes excessive body fat are more likely to suffer from health complications that are also related to weight including but not limited to: high blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol, diabetes, gallbladder disease and problems, arthritis, sleep disorders, respiratory problems, menstrual irregularities, and cancers of the breasts, uterus, prostate and colon. Obesity puts a person at a higher risk for surgical complications and it has also been found that their wounds take a longer duration to heal.
Many factors influence the obesity epidemic that exists in our society today. We live in a culture where everything is very fast paced and instant gratification is expected. Stress affects our everyday lives dramatically. Many people are working one or more jobs in addition to raising a family. While these jobs may require less physical labor than jobs of the past, they are very mentally exhausting and this can contribute to additional stress. As a result of working long hours, long commutes and hectic schedules, people have little or no time for exercise and active recreation. People find themselves doing less physically active activities during their leisure time and as an effort to save time they drive to work rather than utilizing a physically active method such as walking or riding a bike.
Another group to look at is children and teens. In the past, the schools always had physical education class every day. Today, most schools do not have daily physical education class; in fact, it is only for half of the year. This is unfortunate because for some children this was the only type of exercise they received during the day on an everyday basis. So now these children do not receive exercise during the day and after school find themselves playing video games, watching television, and playing on computers or other technology until their parents get home from work. We also have the issue of with everyone’s busy schedules it appears there is often not enough time to prepare healthy good proportioned meals. Families are in a hurry to get home and then get to the next spot they need to be in that many are driving through fast food restaurants to get their dinner. Fast food meals are full of high fat, calories and sodium and are not good source energy or brain food. They are low in important vitamins, minerals, fiber and other nutrients. Basically, you are filling your body with empty calories and not contributing to the overall health and nutritional requirements you need.
There are several types of eating disorders that stem from our society as well that have adverse effects on a person’s health and can cause severe medical issues. For example, bulimia nervosa disorder can cause a person to gain weight, have bloating, stomach aches, swelling in the feet and hands, a chronic sore or hoarse throat, damaged blood vessels in the eyes, swollen cheeks and salivary glands, ulcers, acid reflux, ruptured esophagus or stomach, adverse effects in the menstrual cycle and chronic constipation from the abuse of laxatives. Binge-eating disorder overtime can lead to obesity. Obesity can also in turn cause various medical complications, such as type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease, high blood pressure, certain types of cancers, muscle and joint pain, gastrointestinal problems and sleep apnea. Anorexia nervosa disorder can cause a person to