In this weeks post I talk about why obesity is becoming increasingly problematic in the UK, with rates of obesity higher than anywhere else in Europe.
The Rising State of Obesity
Obesity is becoming increasingly problematic in the UK, with rates of obesity higher than anywhere else in Europe. For example, the Centre for Obesity Research at the University of Birmingham notes that more than 20% of the country’s population now qualify as obese. In addition, if you combine the number of people who are obese with the number who are overweight, 64% of adults in the UK are classed as being unhealthily heavy.
Why are more people in the UK becoming obese?
People are constantly saying they need to lose weight in London and all across the country, but what is causing this obesity epidemic? It is thought that multiple factors have combined to lead to an increasing percentage of the population struggling with their weight. Firstly, people are engaging in less physical activity, so fewer calories are being burned during the average day. Many modern jobs involve sitting all day before driving home for dinner. Watching hours of television is a popular evening activity, adding to the sedentary nature of the average lifestyle.
Meanwhile, people are also eating more energy-dense foods that are packed with unhealthy ingredients like refined sugar and saturated fat. After a long day at work, it’s tempting to just make a microwavable meal, but these meals often contain enormous amounts of saturated fat, salt and added sugar. Processed foods are also cheap and easy to obtain, making them even more appealing. Fast food chains also play an undeniable role.
Why obesity is so dangerous
Some object that a crackdown on obesity reflects an unhealthy preoccupation with attaining a certain ideal body type. However, this line of argument entirely ignores the significant health hazards associated with obesity. As well as being linked to cardiovascular disease, heart attacks and strokes, studies show that people who overweight are more likely to suffer from cancers of the colon, endometrium, kidney, esophagus and breast. Developing type two diabetes is also significantly more common in the obese population, carrying the associated risks of nerve damage and kidney disease. As any fitness trainer in London will tell you, a desire to feel better and extend the lifespan is one of the most common explanations for wanting to get in shape.
Top three tips to reduce your risk of obesity
To dramatically influence your own likelihood of becoming obese, following these three simple but highly effective tips:
1. Exercise properly
If you want to stay in shape or get back into shape, consistent exercise is absolutely vital. However, exercising in the right way is just as important as having regular workouts. As a personal trainer in London I can help to ensure that you’re working out in a way that helps you meet your goals as quickly as possible, and seeking the advice of a professional can teach you things you never knew about how to use gym equipment in the most effective ways.
2. Avoid crash diets
If you think you’ve put on a few pounds and are worried about becoming obese, don’t starve yourself to achieve your weight loss goals. When you make excessive cuts to your daily calorie intake, your body learns to expect very little nutrition and your metabolic rate slows in response. With good personal training in London, you can combine regular exercise with a healthy but enjoyable diet to achieve lasting results.
3. Monitor your attitude to food
People who comfort eat are often obese, so if you feel the urge to reach for sweet treats when you’re feeling low it’s important to think about new coping strategies. Try to learn the difference between the cues that tell you that you’re truly hungry and the urge to eat in the absence of hunger. Often, there are physical activities that would lift your mood more than eating, so finding a type of exercise you enjoy can be a brilliant step in the right direction.
Marc Dressen, MSc
Personal Trainer in London
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Featured Image: National Heart Forum