Health Effects of Obesity

Psychological and Emotional Effects
Emotional suffering may be one of the most painful parts of obesity. American society emphasizes physical appearance and often equates attractiveness with slimness, especially for women. Such messages make overweight people feel unattractive.
Many people think that individuals with obesity are gluttonous, lazy, or both. This is not true. As a result, people who are obese often face prejudice or discrimination in the job market, at school, and in social situations. Feelings of rejection, shame, or depression may occur.

Final Thoughts on Obesity's Health Effects

Today, more than 65 percent of adults in the United States are overweight or obese. Even more concerning is the increasing occurrence of childhood obesity. There are many effects of obesity, such as: heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, and some forms of cancer, as described in this article.
But there is good news. If you are overweight, losing as little as 5 percent of your body weight may lower your risk for several of these effects, including heart disease and diabetes.
(Click BMI to learn how healthcare providers estimate if a person's weight is in a healthy range. Click BMI Calculator to determine your estimated body mass. Click BMI and Weight for more information on assessing your risk for obesity-related medical problems.)
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