Fox News posted an article today discussing the subject of obesity and longevity. An analysis of ten studies comprising nearly 200,000 U.S. adults over the past seventy years showed some insight into our health and weight.
None of the participants in each study had cardiovascular problems. However, the majority were overweight. The risk of a stroke, heart attack, heart failure or death was twenty-one percent higher for men aged 40-59 years old compared to those of healthy weight. Women had a thirty-two percent elevated risk of similar heart-related problems and death compared to the norm.
People who were obese at the beginning of each study had much higher risks of cardiovascular-related diseases and death when they reached middle-age. Men were sixty-seven percent higher, and women were eighty-five percent higher when compared to the norm. Those who were extremely obese had even higher risks.
One conclusion was that obese people had shorter lives and lived many more years with cardiovascular disease compared to those of average weight. Excess body fat increases the dangers of extended high blood pressure and diabetes.
The analysis determined that overweight people live nearly as long as normal-weight people. Obese people lived about two years less. Exceedingly obese lived six years less.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) equates a forty percent chance of contracting all types of cancers. Nearly seventy percent of all Americans are overweight or obese according to the CDC. The rates of cancer appear to be increasing each decade.
What has changed over the past fifty or hundred years that we see increased rates of obesity and cancer? Food choices, portion sizes, and inactivity are the top three causes of weight gain according to many sources. Age, obesity and lifestyle choices are in the top three causes of cancer from other sources.
We have choices. We can choose smaller portions. That’s easy. We made that decision years ago. We use our salad plates for each meal rather than the larger dinner plates. I believe food choices can be addressed with two options – habit breaking techniques and education.
Most of us eat by habit. We see the time and determine we should eat. Even if we aren’t hungry. Many times, we are dehydrated and not hungry. The feelings are similar. Western society tells us that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
Eastern society tells us the opposite. Eat breakfast if you want to, but it is not that important. We are not a society of getting up an hour or two before daylight and working strenuously till noon. We don’t burn off the calories we eat for breakfast. And, we don’t choose the proper nutrition either. Bad habits should be replaced with good practices.
The Food Pyramid has been around since the 70’s. Has it helped? I don’t think so. I agree with the need for fresh fruits and vegetables at every meal. But, I disagree with the quantity of grains and dairy per meal. My studies indicate that many of our health problems come from allergies and sensitivities to both gluten and casein. Additionally, the quantity of grains and dairy increase the acidity levels of our bodies increasing the risk of future disease.
Many times, we do not have obvious gastric problems from either gluten or casein. Brain inflammation and increased exposure to autoimmune issues have been associated with each of the studies I’ve read.
Lifestyle choices affect our health and longevity. I’ve discussed this in detail in my book, Longevity Secrets for Healthy Aging. Inactivity leads to a lower quality of life – the inability to do those things we want to do as we age. Many simple exercises, such as walking, improve our mobility and strength.
Human growth hormone decreases with age. Many functions in our bodies decline with age. When human growth hormone levels increase, these other factors also increase. One of the easiest ways to improve human growth hormone is to fast.
Fasting, lower caloric intake, and nutritional balance reduce age-related diseases and improve the quality of life as we age. The Internet has more information that we can digest. Self-diagnosis is not recommended, but collecting data is.
Gather your facts and discuss them with a healthcare professional or your physician. If you are on any medical regimen, do not make changes on your own. This is critical if you find yourself gaining an extra pound or two each year.
I am suffering from some of the diseases. Most of the problem is the stomach. How I can do this. Would you suggest me some information about belly increasing? I want to reduce my belly. How I can I do it.
Martha: I am not a doctor or weight loss expert. I research what goes on in the human body at the cellular level and look for cause and effect relationships. A large belly can be the result of several things. One is not managing stress. Stress causes fat to be stored in the belly. And, there are four times the number of stress-related fat storage sites. Another cause is the amount of carbohydrates you eat are not being processed efficiently – insulin resistance. Likewise, leptin resistance might contribute. I recommend that people eat nutritionally balanced meals as a lifestyle to begin any change. The Wahls Protocol describes nutritional balance as one cup of leafy green vegetables, one cup of colored fruits and vegetables, one cup of sulfur-laden vegetables and one cup of high-quality protein/fat. Dr. Wahl recommends three of these meals daily. I found that one and a half meals work well for me. It’s best to be in great health as you begin changing anything else in your life. If you are on any prescription medicines, it’s always best to chat with your physician before making any changes. Notice that the Wahls Protocol eliminates dairy and carbohydrates. It’s more akin to the Atkins type of diet, but you are balancing the nutrients (30+) that your body needs daily. I supplement vitamin K2 and vitamin E (all eight compounds that make-up vitamin E – tocopherols and tocotrienols). The rest of the nutrients I need are found in the foods I choose (fruits, veggies, and proteins). I also mix my protein sources so that I don’t have the same protein within any 48-hour period. Another thing I do is to fast 18 hours daily. I eat only between the hours of noon and six pm. Fasting is one of the healthiest things people can do. Please let me know if this helps. Thanks again.
I am an obese person. I feel uncomfortable while doing most of the work. Now I have started doing exercise. Hope to see a good change in me.