Flegal KM, Kruszon-Moran D, Carroll MD, Fryar CD, Ogden CL. Trends in obesity among adults in the United States, 2005 to 2014. The Journal of the American Medical Association. 2016;315(21):2284–2291. Available at http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2526639 or https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27272580.
But it also takes physical activity to shed pounds. That’s especially important as people start to age and dieting alone could cost them precious muscle in addition to fat, says Dr. Jack Rejeski a professor in exercise and aging at Wake Forest University. Muscles become flabbier over time until people find themselves on the verge of disability, like a canoe that floats peacefully until it gets too near a waterfall to pull back, he says.
An electronic database search was conducted on MEDLINE and PubMed (both clinical and general) for English language articles, with no cutoff dates. Searches were conducted on 20, 23 and 26–27 January 2012, and again on 18 April, 24 May 2012 and 2 July 2012 to capture newly published material. Two broad search areas were categorized: (1) weight loss through caloric restriction, exercise or both; and (2) long-term maintenance of weight loss, feasibility and safety among older adults. In order to cast the widest net for these two areas of interest, five separate overlapping searches were performed, using the keywords: obese, obesity, older adults, elderly, weight loss, body composition, caloric restriction, lifestyle intervention, diet, exercise, function, long-term feasibility, maintenance, and safety.
Adopted by the World Health Assembly in 2004, the “WHO Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health” describes the actions needed to support healthy diets and regular physical activity. The Strategy calls upon all stakeholders to take action at global, regional and local levels to improve diets and physical activity patterns at the population level.
For many of us, life gets better—easier, even—as we get older. We get more comfortable and confident in our own skin. We weed out what doesn’t work for us and invite more of what does work into our lives. There’s a certain clarity that inspires us not to sweat the small stuff so much and to keep the big picture in mind.
Fat cells, especially those stored around the waist,secrete hormones and other substances that fire inflammation. Although inflammation is an essential component of the immune system and part of the healing process, inappropriate inflammation causes a variety of health problems. Inflammation can make the body less responsive to insulin and change the way the body metabolizes fats and carbohydrates, leading to higher blood sugar levels and, eventually, to diabetes and its many complications. (5) Several large trials have shown that moderate weight loss can prevent or delay the start of diabetes in people who are at high risk. (6-8)
Obesity is mostly preventable through a combination of social changes and personal choices. Changes to diet and exercising are the main treatments. Diet quality can be improved by reducing the consumption of energy-dense foods, such as those high in fat and sugars, and by increasing the intake of dietary fiber. Medications may be used, along with a suitable diet, to reduce appetite or decrease fat absorption. If diet, exercise, and medication are not effective, a gastric balloon or surgery may be performed to reduce stomach volume or length of the intestines, leading to feeling full earlier or a reduced ability to absorb nutrients from food.
Getting the correct ratios of protein, carbohydrates, and good-quality fats can help in weight loss via enhancement of the metabolism. Support groups that are informed about healthy, nutritious, and balanced diets can offer an individual the support he or she needs to maintain this type of eating regimen.
Exercise and a healthy diet are key in treating obesity. On its website, The Obesity Action Coalition writes, “modifying behaviors that contributed to developing obesity is one way to treat the disease…either alone or in conjunction with other treatments.” The educational and lobbying organization, which has more than 50,000 members, cites “increasing physical activity” and “becoming educated about the body and how to nourish it appropriately” among those actions.
The opinions and assertions contained herein are the private views of the authors and are not to be construed as official or as reflecting the views of the U.S. Air Force Medical Department or the U.S. Air Force at large.
Fortunately, there are lots of weight-loss options available for boomers, and all the good ones revolve around an age-old formula for shedding pounds: eating less and exercising more. That’s something any generation can get behind.
Kavousi M, Elias-Smale S, Rutten JH, Leening MJ, Vliegenthart R, Verwoert GC et al. Evaluation of newer risk markers for coronary heart disease risk classification: a cohort study. Ann Intern Med 2012; 156: 438–444.
For starters, it’s even more important than ever to actually follow the advice to talk to your doc before beginning any new exercise regimen. “Medical problems, such as heart disease and metabolic disease, become more common after age 60, so it becomes much more important to have a medical checkup before attempting a fat loss plan,” says Huizenga. Then there’s the fact that over the age of 60, your oxygen intake may be reduced by as much as one-third of what it was when you were 25, causing you to have a tougher time taking deep breaths when you’re exercising at a moderate to high intensity, and making it crucial to ease in to a new plan. Finally, this is the decade when your hips, knees, and other key joints are more likely to develop arthritis, which means that your old go-to running or aerobics workouts may need to be swapped for swimming and/or gentle walking plans.
Medical treatment of obesity focuses on lifestyle changes such as eating less and increasing activity level. There are medications that can promote weight loss, although they work only in conjunction with eating less and exercising more.
It’s best to work muscles to the point of fatigue, without overstraining, while taking enough time between workouts to allow the muscles to rest and recover. (Some examples of strength training exercises can be seen in Kathy Coover’s at-home workout. See KC Workout.pdf.)
Although there are genetic, behavioral and hormonal influences on body weight, obesity occurs when you take in more calories than you burn through exercise and normal daily activities. Your body stores these excess calories as fat.
The treatment plan for weight loss involves eating fewer calories than your body needs, getting aerobic exercise for 30 minutes most days of the week and learning the skills to change unhealthy behaviors.
Most adolescents fall short of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommendation of at least 60 minutes of aerobic physical activity each day. Only 18% of students in grades 9—12 met this recommendation in 2007. Daily, quality physical education in school can help students meet the guidelines, however, in 2009 only 33% had access to and attended daily physical education classes.
Thank you for your question! With so many supplements out there it’s not easy to choose. One way to pick a vitamin supplement brand is to look for one that has the USP designation on the label. Supplements that are verified by the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) have met standards of quality, purity, potency, performance, and consistency and are made with current FDA good manufacturing practices. Many major brands carry the USP seal, including Nature Made®, Schiff® and Kirkland Signature™.
Lead researcher, Racher Batterham, explained that people who carry the FTO gene tend to eat too much, prefer high-energy, fatty foods, and are usually obese. They also appear to take much longer to reach satiety (feeling of being full).
A third approach to obesity treatment involves research into the social factors that encourage or reinforce weight gain in humans. Researchers are looking at such issues as the advertising and marketing of food products; media stereotypes of obesity; the development of eating disorders in adolescents and adults; and similar questions.
This phenomenon is by no means limited to packaged food at upscale supermarkets. Back in February, when I was at Real Food Daily in Los Angeles, I ordered the “Sea Cake” along with my green-vegetable smoothie. It was intensely delicious in a way that set off alarm bells. RFD wouldn’t provide precise information about the ingredients, but I found a recipe online for “Tofu ‘Fish’ Cakes,” which seem very close to what I ate. Essentially, they consist of some tofu mixed with a lot of refined carbs (the RFD version contains at least some unrefined carbs) along with oil and soy milk, all fried in oil and served with a soy-and-oil-based tartar sauce. (Tofu and other forms of soy are high in protein, but per 100 calories, tofu is as fatty as many cuts of beef.) L.A. being to the wholesome-food movement what Hawaii is to Spam, I ate at two other mega-popular wholesome-food restaurants while I was in the area. At Café Gratitude I enjoyed the kale chips and herb-cornmeal-crusted eggplant parmesan, and at Akasha I indulged in a spiced-lamb-sausage flatbread pizza. Both are pricey orgies of fat and carbs.
Heart disease – Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) is present 10 times more often in obese people compared to those who are not obese. Coronary artery disease is also more prevalent because fatty deposits build up in arteries that supply the heart. Narrowed arteries and reduced blood flow to the heart can cause chest pain (angina) or a heart attack. Blood clots can also form in narrowed arteries and cause a stroke.
Obesity hypoventilation syndrome (OHS) is a condition in which an inability to breathe deeply enough and quickly enough results in a low level of oxygen and a high level of carbon dioxide in the blood.
(For the above numbers the reference male is 5’10 and weighs 154 pounds. The reference woman is 5’4 and weighs 126 pounds. If your body measurements vary from these reference numbers, your caloric needs may also vary.) You may find out more about how much to eat for weight loss by using the government’s supertracker tool.
In Pandora’s Lunchbox, Melanie Warner assiduously catalogs every concern that could possibly be raised about the health threats of food processing, leveling accusations so vague, weakly supported, tired, or insignificant that only someone already convinced of the guilt of processed food could find them troubling. While ripping the covers off the breakfast-cereal conspiracy, for example, Warner reveals that much of the nutritional value claimed by these products comes not from natural ingredients but from added vitamins that are chemically synthesized, which must be bad for us because, well, they’re chemically synthesized. It’s the tautology at the heart of the movement: processed foods are unhealthy because they aren’t natural, full stop.
Individuals with obesity may suffer devastating health problems, face reduced life expectancy, and experience stigma and discrimination. Obesity is a strong risk factor for type 2 diabetes, fatty liver disease, and many other disorders within the NIDDK’s mission.
Researchers have long known that the human body is home to all manner of microorganisms, but only in the past decade or so have they come to realize that these microbes outnumber our own cells 10 to one. Rapid gene-sequencing techniques have revealed that the biggest and most diverse metropolises of “microbiota” reside in the large intestine and mouth, although impressive communities also flourish in the genital tract and on our skin.
Babies of overweight or obese mothers are at an increased risk of being born too soon, being stillborn (dead in the womb after 20 weeks of pregnancy), and having neural tube defects (defects of the brain and spinal cord).
Children grow at different rates at different times, so it is not always easy to tell if a child is overweight. The CDC BMI growth charts are used to compare a child’s BMI with other children of the same sex and age. It is important that a child’s health care provider evaluates a child’s BMI, growth, and potential health risks due to excess body weight. An online tool for gauging the BMIs of children and teens can be found at: https://nccd.cdc.gov/dnpabmi/Calculator.aspx
Waist circumference is another widely used measurement to determine abdominal fat content. An excess of abdominal fat, when out of proportion to total body fat, is considered a predictor of risk factors related to obesity. Men with a waist measurement exceeding 40 inches are considered at risk. Women are at risk with a waist measurement of 35 inches or greater.
To prevent losing too much muscle and bone mass when losing weight, older adults should focus on getting plenty of protein, calcium and vitamin D in their diets, Beavers says. One study found that adults between ages 52 and 75 built muscle best if they ate 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight daily – or double the Institute of Health’s recommended intake. For a 180-pound person, that’s about 120 grams, or about the amount of two chicken breasts, three eggs and one Greek yogurt.
 Flegal KM, Kruszon-Moran D, Carroll MD, Fryar CD, Ogden CL. Trends in obesity among adults in the United States, 2005 to 2014. The Journal of the American Medical Association. 2016;315(21):2284–2291. Available at http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2526639 or https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27272580.