Are you obese and don’t know it? What exactly is obesity? When most people hear “obesity,” they conjure up an image of someone who’s 400 pounds, perhaps so large it’s impossible to walk or even get out of bed. But the truth is, obesity is much more common and, sadly, easily achievable with the Standard American Diet, than you might realize.
When men have a body fat percentage greater than 25 percent and women have a body fat percentage greater than 30, they are considered obese. One way of measuring body fat is by calculating your body mass index (BMI). To calculate your BMI, input your weight and height into this calculator.
For example, a women who’s 5’4” tall weighing 180 pounds or a man who is 5’8” and 170 pounds are considered obese, per the BMI calculator.
Obesity has been one of the major focal points of health news for years and years. Despite the rising awareness and public health efforts surrounding the obesity epidemic, the problem is only getting worse. Consider these statistics:
- About 35% of adults and 17% of youth in the U.S. are obese.
- A study by the RAND Corporation pointedly states: “Obesity is linked to a big increase in chronic health conditions and significantly higher health expenditures. And it affects more people than smoking, heavy drinking, or poverty.”
- What’s more: A recent study published by McKinsey Global Institute concluded that the global cost of obesity is about $2 trillion, a dash under smoking and war & terrorism, which cost $2.1 trillion each.
THE RISK FACTORS OF OBESITY
The issue of obesity extends far beyond looks, weight and food consumption. It is a severe condition that’s strongly linked to:
- Heart disease
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome
- Liver disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- Various types of cancer
THE SOLUTION TO OBESITY
The troubling thing is, obesity is highly preventable. The McKinsey Global Institute presented a list of “interventions” to reduce obesity:
Credit: McKinsey Global Institute
As you can see, the solutions that provide the greatest results directly involve what you eat, what you put in your body.
A mostly raw, plant-based diet is not only the healthiest choice you have to combat obesity, but it’s also the most accessible solution to obesity (or even regular weight gain).
Commit to eating about 85% fresh vegetables, organic when possible. Choose cooked food and fruit for the remaining 15%. The raw foods contain living enzymes and nutrients that effectively nurture and empower your body, while the cooked foods contain additional vitamins and minerals that are only available from cooking.
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By taking care of yourself and your family first, you will help make small waves in the fight against obesity—we can only solve this person by person, starting with YOU.