Certainly, many older adults remain physically active and monitor their health closely. Data from the CDC also indicates strong participation in preventative healthcare, such as mammograms and cancer screenings. But as retirement looms on the horizon, baby boomers’ health becomes even more crucial. Those extra years tacked on to life expectancy in the past century should be cause for celebration, not angst.
While these countries continue to deal with the problems of infectious diseases and undernutrition, they are also experiencing a rapid upsurge in noncommunicable disease risk factors such as obesity and overweight, particularly in urban settings.
Jump up ^ Molenaar EA, Numans ME, van Ameijden EJ, Grobbee DE (November 2008). “[Considerable comorbidity in overweight adults: results from the Utrecht Health Project]”. Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd (English abstract) (in Dutch). 152 (45): 2457–63. PMID 19051798.
Scientists have made tremendous strides in understanding obesity and in improving the medication treatment of this important disease. In time, better, safer, and more effective obesity medications will be available. But currently there is still no “magic cure” for obesity. The best and safest way to lose fat and keep it off is through a commitment to a lifelong process of proper diet and regular exercise. Medications should be considered helpful adjuncts to diet and exercise for patients whose health risk from obesity clearly outweigh the potential side effects of the medications. Medications should be prescribed by doctors familiar with the patients’ conditions and with the use of the medications. Medication(s) and other “herbal” preparations with unproven effectiveness and safety should be avoided.
In part, it’s because big has become the new normal: big portions, big containers of sugary sodas, big clothing sizes, big people who have established the habit of eating way too much. Just as the culture gradually shifted away from tobacco consumption starting in the 1960s, experts say, it now needs to shift beyond the consumption of too much food.
Jump up ^ Dannenberg AL, Burton DC, Jackson RJ (2004). “Economic and environmental costs of obesity: The impact on airlines”. American journal of preventive medicine (Letter). 27 (3): 264. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2004.06.004. PMID 15450642.
Jump up ^ Colagiuri S, Lee CM, Colagiuri R, Magliano D, Shaw JE, Zimmet PZ, Caterson ID (2010). “The cost of overweight and obesity in Australia”. The Medical Journal of Australia (Comparative Study). 192 (5): 260–64. PMID 20201759.
Schematic of the systematic selection process to identify relevant studies (Abbreviations: BC= body composition; DXA = dual energy x-ray absorptiometry; CT= computed tomography; MRI=magnetic resonance imaging; RCT = randomised control trial)
The main treatment for obesity consists of dieting and physical exercise. Diet programs may produce weight loss over the short term, but maintaining this weight loss is frequently difficult and often requires making exercise and a lower food energy diet a permanent part of a person’s lifestyle.
You may be able to make progress in weight loss for seniors and achieving your ideal weight by consuming the ideal number of calories. According to health.gov, the total number of calories a person needs per day varies depending on age, sex, weight and physical activity. Due to a decrease in basal metabolic rates that happen as someone ages, caloric needs also generally decrease for adults as they age.
Unintentional weight loss in persons older than 65 years is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. The most common etiologies are malignancy, nonmalignant gastrointestinal disease, and psychiatric conditions. Overall, nonmalignant diseases are more common causes of unintentional weight loss in this population than malignancy. Medication use and polypharmacy can interfere with taste or cause nausea and should not be overlooked. Social factors may contribute to unintentional weight loss. A readily identifiable cause is not found in 16% to 28% of cases. Recommended tests include a complete blood count, basic metabolic panel, liver function tests, thyroid function tests, C-reactive protein levels, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, glucose measurement, lactate dehydrogenase measurement, and urinalysis. Chest radiography and fecal occult blood testing should be performed. Abdominal ultrasonography may also be considered. When baseline evaluation is unremarkable, a three- to six-month observation period is justified. Treatment focuses on the underlying cause. Nutritional supplements and flavor enhancers, and dietary modification that takes into account patient preferences and chewing or swallowing disabilities may be considered. Appetite stimulants may increase weight but have serious adverse effects and no evidence of decreased mortality.
Lorcaserin (Belviq 10 mg one to two times daily) was approved by the FDA in 2012. It may be considered if your BMI is 30 or greater or if you have a BMI greater than 27 with weight-related conditions. Studies demonstrated that 50% of patients lost an average of 5% of their body weight when combined with diet and exercise (compared to 25% of patients with diet and exercise alone). Lorcaserin works by activating the serotonin 2C receptor in the brain, which helps you feel full after smaller portions. The most common side effects were headache, nausea, and dizziness.
The first step to reaching your ideal weight is knowing what that weight is. You may feel too heavy or to thin but actually be at a healthy weight. One way to compare your weight to your height is through the body mass index, or BMI. BMI may be used to screen for health problems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), but it is not a health diagnostic.
Sadly, Wilhelm’s father’s condition wasn’t treatable, and he passed away a few months after being diagnosed with terminal cancer; but not before Wilhelm spent her weekends being his caregiver. “Taking care of my father was not easy on my new marriage, or myself,” she says, “but I would not change a thing. I did what would make my father the happiest. We have to make sacrifices for family.”
The diminished ability or the inability to conceive and have offspring. Infertility is also defined in specific terms as the failure to conceive after a year of regular intercourse without contraception.
Ben Sheidler, a spokesman for Coca-Cola, said the company had created 32 new beverages in the last 18 months, and that 65 percent of its drinks portfolio in Chile could now be described as having low or reduced sugar.
Pollan has popularized contempt for “nutritionism,” the idea behind packing healthier ingredients into processed foods. In his view, the quest to add healthier ingredients to food isn’t a potential solution, it’s part of the problem. Food is healthy not when it contains healthy ingredients, he argues, but when it can be traced simply and directly to (preferably local) farms. As he resonantly put it in The Times in 2007: “If you’re concerned about your health, you should probably avoid food products that make health claims. Why? Because a health claim on a food product is a good indication that it’s not really food, and food is what you want to eat.”
Much of the food isn’t all that different from what I can get in any other supermarket, but sprinkled throughout are items that scream “wholesome.” One that catches my eye today, sitting prominently on an impulse-buy rack near the checkout counter, is Vegan Cheesy Salad Booster, from Living Intentions, whose package emphasizes the fact that the food is enhanced with spirulina, chlorella, and sea vegetables. The label also proudly lets me know that the contents are raw—no processing!—and that they don’t contain any genetically modified ingredients. What the stuff does contain, though, is more than three times the fat content per ounce as the beef patty in a Big Mac (more than two-thirds of the calories come from fat), and four times the sodium.
^ Jump up to: a b Flynn MA, McNeil DA, Maloff B, Mutasingwa D, Wu M, Ford C, Tough SC (February 2006). “Reducing obesity and related chronic disease risk in children and youth: a synthesis of evidence with ‘best practice’ recommendations”. Obes Rev (Review). 7 Suppl 1: 7–66. doi:10.1111/j.1467-789X.2006.00242.x. PMID 16371076.
Heart-healthy eating. Learn about which foods and nutrients are part of a healthy eating pattern. It’s important to eat the right amount of calories to maintain a healthy weight. If you need to lose weight, try to reduce your total daily calories gradually. Use the Body Weight Planner to find out your daily calorie needs and to set goals. Visit healthy recipes and plan for success. Talk with your doctor before beginning any diet or eating plan. Visit Chose My Plate or 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans for more information.
Under-nutrition and obesity often exist side-by-side within the same country, the same community and even within the same household and this double burden is caused by inadequate pre-natal, infant and young child nutrition followed by exposure to high-fat, energy-dense, micronutrient-poor foods and lack of physical activity.