OBESITY IS A CONDITION IN WHICH EXCESS BUILD-UP OF FAT LEADS TO POTENTIALLY ADVERSE HEALTH CONDITIONS.

Obesity is common; in 2008, it has been reported to affect 10% of men and 14% of women worldwide.1 The 2010 Singapore National Health Survey revealed that 10.8% of Singapore adults was obese. According to ethnicity, the rates for obesity were 24.0%, 16.9% and 7.9% for Malays, Indians and Chinese, respectively.2

Obesity is defined as abnormal or excessive fat accumulation that may impair health. It is a medical concern because of the secondary health problems associated with it. Risks linked to obesity include heart disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, cancer, breathing problems, and kidney and liver diseases.1* Fortunately, losing even just a portion of the excess fat, around 10%, can substantially reduce the risk of many of these secondary conditions.3

While obesity is ultimately a condition caused by an imbalance between caloric intake and daily energy expenditure, multiple factors can lead to such an imbalance. In addition to eating excessively, several other factors such as genes, the surrounding culture and infrastructure, amount of sleep and even some medications may influence unintended weight gain. Although some of these factors are out of a person’s control, lifestyle habits and nutritional intake can be adapted to help prevent weight gain, or to help individuals to lose the excess fat they have already gained.4

As a caloric imbalance is the primary cause of obesity, correcting this imbalance may be the most effective way to address it. Both increasing activity (burning more calories) and reducing intake (eating fewer calories) can help restore a proper energy balance. At Nestlé Health Science, we are actively engaged in developing nutritional therapies to help improve conditions like obesity and the quality of life of patients with such conditions.

 

  1. World Health Organization. Global Health Observatory ( GHO ) data Obesity. Available at: http://www.who.int/gho/ncd/risk_factors/obesity_text/en/ Accessed 10 March 2016.
  2. Epidemiology & Disease Control Division. National Health Survey 2010. Available at: https://www.moh.gov.sg/content/dam/moh_web/Publications/Reports/2011/NHS2010%20-%20low%20res.pdf. Accessed 14 March 2016.
  3. Wing R, Lang W, Wadden T, et al. Benefits of Modest Weight Loss in Improving Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Overweight and Obese Individuals With Type 2 Diabetes. Diabetes Care 2011;34(7):1481–6.
  4. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Understanding Adult Overweight and Obesity. Available at: http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-topics/weight-control/understanding/Pages/understanding-adult-overweight-and-obesity.aspx. Accessed 10 March 2016.

 

*Risks and symptoms are not all-inclusive, patients may have different experiences.

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Obesity is one of the most prevalent health conditions worldwide.

The global average obesity prevalence is 12%.

In a survey conducted in 2010, the prevalence of obesity in Singapore was 11%.

Losing even a small amount of weight can reduce the risk of comorbidities.

GET MORE EXERCISE

GET MORE EXERCISE

Starting to exercise regularly can seem like a daunting task for people who are obese. However, small changes, like taking the stairs instead of elevators, parking a car farther from a destination or going for walks after meals can all add substantial energy expenditure to an otherwise sedentary lifestyle.

EAT NUTRITIOUS FOODS

EAT NUTRITIOUS FOODS

Part of the reason obesity is so common and on the rise is the availability of high-calorie (especially high-fat), low-nutritional value foods (like soft, sugary drinks). Substituting nutritious foods like fruits, vegetables and lean meats, and drinking more water can help bring caloric balance under control to better deal with obesity.

ACKNOWLEDGING OBESITY

ACKNOWLEDGING OBESITY

A recent survey in the UK about patient attitudes towards weight and obesity showed that only 10 percent of patients who are clinically obese believe themselves to be.1 In contrast, a survey showed that one in two Singaporeans are unhappy with their weight and are trying to lose weight by either diet, exercise or both.2  Discussing obesity and appropriate body weight with a physician or dietician is an important step in recognizing the health risks of this condition, and modifying lifestyle and diet accordingly.

1. Johnson F, Beeken RJ, Croker H, et al. Do weight perceptions among obese adults in Great Britain match clinical definitions? Analysis of cross-sectional surveys from 2007 and 2012. BMJ Open 2014; 4:e005561

2. Gan GL, Pang J. Obesity in singapore, prevention and control. Singapore Fam Physician 2012;38:8–13.




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