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Tackling Obesity Early In Life
Nov 2017
Dr Jyothsna Krishnappa
Senior Consultant, Internal Medicine Apollo Hospitals, Bangalore

Obesity has now become a global epidemic and is among the foremost public health problems in the world. The term obesity is defined as a complex disorder of various causes characterised by excess of body fat that affects health. Obesity primarily was a problem in the developed countries in the initial years.

However, the Asian and South Asian countries including India, have now caught up with their Western counterparts and are facing the challenges of obesity. This is quite a paradox because in India, malnutrition is significantly prevalent, especially in largely rural and interior sectors and yet, the country is battling the problem of obesity and its related diseases in the semi urban and urban areas.

A Problem Of Plenty?
Is obesity a problem of plenty? The basic cause of obesity is a mismatch between the greater consumption of calories or energy and the energy expenditure by the body with the subsequent excess, causing this energy to be stored as fat cells. This later alters certain hormonal and nutrition-related signals in the body leading to obesity and the sequelae of its problems.

Health Risks Of Obesity
Being a complex disorder, obesity is associated with dysregulation of fat metabolism, endocrinal abnormalities, including insulin resistance and changes in liver function due to fat deposition, abnormalities in the circulatory system, gall bladder and digestive system and in lung function.