Recent studies indicate that abdominal obesity is related to the risk of cardiovascular disease. An overweight of 15 percent relative to the ideal weight, according to age and sex, is a clear health problem, especially when fatty deposits are located in the abdominal area, the commonly called “happiness curve.
In men, abdominal or digestive obesity occurs in alcoholic individuals with impaired liver function. The most frequent cases have their roots in a slight pancreatic insufficiency, manifesting with swelling and drowsiness after eating, in addition to starch intolerance.
In women, it is manifested in those who have chronic constipation aggravated by the abusive use of laxatives. It can also occur in people with colitis caused by the abuse of greens and crudités diets.
Another form of expression of abdominal obesity is a nervous type. It causes various digestive disorders induced by emotional states, such as a sensation of constriction at chest level, tachycardia, spasmodic cramps, nausea, gastritis, etc.
Consequences of Obesity
The risks of obesity begin when there is overweight fat above 15-20 percent. Up to this percentage, it is an aesthetic problem, and above it, a medical disorder.
Obesity, considered a public health problem in industrialized countries, diminishes the quality of life and is an important risk factor in the development of diseases:
- Cancer. According to scientific work by the American Cancer Society, there is a high incidence of cancerous processes in individuals overweight over 40 percent.
- Hypertension. There is undoubtedly a close relationship between obesity and high blood pressure, which is more clearly associated with certain types of obesity. Therefore, in abdominal obesity, the incidence of hypertension is higher, as well as other metabolic complications.
There is also a predisposition of the obese to thrombosis due to increased blood clotting.
- Respiratory problems. Fat accumulation on the chest wall results in decreased breathing capacity, and dyspnoea (difficulty breathing) is common.
- Gallstones. In obese people, bile contains more cholesterol than normal and conditions the appearance of stones.
- Cardiovascular disorders. People who are overweight have a greater infiltration of fat at the level of the myocardium, causing a cardiac overload that can trigger heart disease. In other cases, atheromatous plaques from increased cholesterol are deposited in the coronary arteries and can lead to heart attacks.
- Diabetes. Obesity has been considered the most important cause of diabetes development. Overweight usually precedes diabetes in 80 percent of cases.
- Metabolic alterations. Obese people are predisposed to high cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which are risk factors for cardiovascular disease. The incidence of obesity and gout is also very important.
- Mechanical alterations. As a consequence of the weight that the joints of obese people have to bear, it is frequent the appearance of osteoarthritis, spinal diseases…
- Psychological alterations. The individual may have depression due to obesity, sexual difficulties, as well as feelings of inferiority.
It should be borne in mind that nutrition is directly related to the origin of almost all diseases.