It’s no secret that carrying extra weight isn’t a good thing. But did you know that being overweight can have a negative impact on almost every aspect of your health? The good news is that losing even a few pounds can turn your health around. If you were to lose as little as 5% of your body weight, you would start feeling better physically and mentally, from head to toe!
Being overweight impacts your physical and mental health. People struggling with obesity, or who are overweight, are at a higher risk for mental health problems. Multiple studies have found that people who are overweight have a higher risk of developing depression and other mental health issues.
Obesity also affects your sleep. Being overweight is one of the main causes of sleep apnea. This condition occurs when you stop breathing at night. You may find yourself feeling more tired, even after a full night of sleep, and snoring more. Sleep apnea can also cause damage to your heart.
Obesity also has a negative impact on your heart health. Being overweight increases your risk of developing heart disease and having a stroke. It also causes high blood pressure, which can also damage your heart.
As your heart struggles to work through all that extra pressure, the blood it pumps through your body is also suffering. Obesity also causes high cholesterol and increases your risk of developing diabetes.
Imagine all the vital organs in your body like your gallbladder, liver, kidneys, and pancreas. Every single one of those organs is damaged by obesity. This can lead to countless other health issues like gallbladder disease, colon cancer, liver cancer, pancreatic cancer, and many more cancers.
It may not seem like being overweight could affect your ability to get pregnant, but it can. Obesity can make it more difficult to get pregnant and can cause higher risks of having a complicated pregnancy. There is also research that shows obesity can increase your risk for ovarian cancer.
Knees and Legs
Carrying around that extra weight is also hard on your bones and muscles. Osteoarthritis (OA) is a common form of arthritis that happens when the cushion at the ends of your bones breaks down. OA can affect any of your joints, but it usually pops up in your hands, knees, and hips. Without losing weight and easing up on your joints, you could find yourself in need of a hip or knee replacement on top of chronic pain.
The good news is that all those risks and health issues can be avoided. Losing weight can feel like an overwhelming task, but you don’t have to drop a hundred pounds to start feeling better. Losing as little as 5% of your body weight can improve every single aspect of your health.
Positive Impact of Losing 5% of Your Weight
Obesity impacts your health in dozens of ways but losing weight can have just as many benefits! By making some healthier food choices and being active for as little as 15-20 minutes a day you’ll find yourself dropping weight easily.
Let’s say you weigh 300 pounds; your health will start to improve by losing 15 pounds. Losing that weight will start to improve your blood pressure by as much as five points. You’ll also lower your cholesterol and blood sugar, decreasing your risk for diabetes and stroke.
If you were to continue to steadily lose weight you can also decrease your risk for cancer. Women who lost five or more percent of their weight decreased their risk for breast cancer by 12%. Other cancer risks that drop include:
- Colon cancer
- Ovarian cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Pancreatic cancer
- Thyroid cancer
- Gallbladder cancer
As your weight decreases, even by a few pounds, your body will see a huge benefit. Remember that joint pain and deterioration? If you were to lose just 10 pounds, you take 40 pounds of pressure off your joints and knees.
Imagine all the energy you’ll gain from losing weight too. Not only will you sleep better but losing weight can cure your sleep apnea. That means better sleep, more energy during the day, and undoing damage to your heart.
There are also some other benefits to losing weight that you may not have thought of, like better memory. Shedding some extra pounds can even help you have clearer skin. Multiple studies have also shown that people who lose weight and live without obesity spend less money on healthcare each year compared to those who suffer from obesity and all the negative health conditions associated with it.
Obesity can cause you to carry around a physical and mental weight that hurts every part of your health. But making a few simple changes to your lifestyle and losing a tiny percentage of your weight can lift that extra stress off your shoulders.
Losing just 5% of your body weight can improve every aspect of your health, decrease your risk of developing chronic health issues like heart disease and diabetes, reduce your risk of cancer, improve your mental health, and even save you money.
EPIC Health is here to support your journey to living healthier. Our diverse staff of providers, dieticians, exercise physiologists, care managers, and more can give you the tools you need to live healthier and feel better.
Schedule an appointment today to experience everything EPIC has to offer you.