Obesity In Old Age: Weight Struggles And Remedies For Seniors






Posted by Dr Nisha Jain on August 21, 2017

Believe it or not, the world is gradually getting old. With old age comes an array of disorders and deformities including obesity. When old age and obesity knock your doors at the same time, there is a great risk on your health, leading towards many serious health conditions.

According to a study, “About 71% of Americans above 60 or older are either obese or overweight.” Meaning, they have higher (BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2) than the standard Body Mass Index.

If that was shocking, consider this fact from the same study, “The prevalence of obesity among seniors (of and above 75 years) went up from 20% in 1988 to 32% in 2000 in the United States.”

Aging is a natural process and a universal factor that can be neither denied nor reversed. However, the progression of human scientific development has given a boost to our lifestyle. Because of that, the life expectancy (the number of years one lives) has increased to an all-time high.

This factor has nothing to do with disease-free lifestyle, though. As you grow old, your body becomes home to countless diseases and weakened bones, muscles, and energy. These are not actually diseases, rather conditions or side-effects of aging.

Various bodily changes will surface as you reach 30. Your eating habits, appetite, food preferences, and how your body consumes and burns energy – everything changes significantly after thirty years of age.

The causes of obesity in old age –

The main reason why it is so easy for older people to gain fat and weight is, the energy burned is lower than the energy consumed by them. Physical activity increasingly decreases. That encourages the accumulation of fat aka obesity. Some other causes of old age obesity are –
• Genetics
• Environment and society
• Lifestyle
• Eating habits
• Activity level (workouts and physical activities)

What Obesity Brings in Old Age?

Obesity is considered one of the reasons of various diseases in old age. These diseases include diabetes, hypertension, hypotension, arthritis, and different types of urinary and cardiovascular diseases, and even cancer. The following subsections highlight various health problems and abnormalities that happen to an elderly with obesity and/or overweightness –

Diabetes: Fasting Plasma Glucose and Postprandial Glucose levels climb up in the human body after 30. These two factors are responsible for diabetes, says medical science.

Metabolic Syndrome: Technically, it is a type of diabetes (to be specific: Noninsulin-Dependent Diabetes or Adult-Onset Diabetes). According to doctors at Slimming Studios, it is the strongest and strangest disease caused by extra body fat and mass. The chances of this disease are high in the obese elderly due to age-related physiological mechanisms.

Low/High Blood Pressure: Hypotension and hypertension are very common in people suffering from obesity. When senescence and obesity come combined, it is no less than a curse to live with. Most obese elderly face ups and downs in their blood pressure levels.

Arthritis: Arthritis is an inflammation of joint(s) resulting in severe pain and limited functions of the body parts involved. Older people often have arthritis. The reason why they get this is somewhere behind their transformed lifestyle, eating habits, nutrient intakes, and digestive system. Due to suppressed appetite, most people feel full even in small meal portions. In that condition, nutrient supply to the body gets completely or partially blocked. Then, it becomes difficult for the body to bear the weight of the bones and muscles. Consequently, bones and joints become weaker and that’s how arthritis starts developing.

Cardiovascular Diseases: The main reason of cardiovascular diseases (CAD) is inactivity. (Inactivity is also a cause of arthritis, by the way.) Studies suggest that obesity increases the hours of inactivity in an obese and elderly individual, which sooner or later prepares a solid ground for a range of cardiovascular diseases, coronary heart disease, and fatal and nonfatal infarctions.

Urinary Incontinency: With the escalating BMI, urinary complications mount in older men and women both. Urinary incontinence is an exasperating diseased condition which is quite painful. It takes time to restore the urinary normalcy in older people.

Now you know the extent and intensity of problems that may occur in old as a consequence of obesity. In that picture, it becomes very important to make efforts starting from early thirties and forties to outperform the possibilities of surplus body weight and fat conditions. Slimming Studios has specific programs available for weight loss and fat reduction for the elderly. You can reach us any time to know more about weight management plans available specifically for you.

Before we conclude this blog, here are a few tips from Dr. Nisha Jain, Chief Medical Officer at Slimming Studios, to help you avoid obesity in old and middle age –
• Exercise regularly
• Take healthy meals
• Increase your nutrition intakes
• Walk and grow your strength
• Avoid overeating
• Drink a lot of water

This blog was created in the wake of Senior Citizens Day which falls on August 21, 2017. Slimming Studios want to spread awareness and encourages the elderly, or those in 30-40 age group, suffering from obesity to make a move and get rid of it for a painless, disease free life.

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