Obesity affects 6 to 70 year olds, say docs

Obesity affects 6 to 70 year olds, say docs

Parents should introduce children to healthy food habits to avoid perils of obesity, say doctors.

Around 20 to 25 per cent of the entire city’s population is obese, observe city doctors. This increased percentage can be attributed to poor lifestyle choices and sedentary daily schedules. 

Dr Mahesh Channappa, senior consultant (surgery and allied specialities) and bariatric surgery, Aster CMI Hospital, says that obesity is not a new issue but is a growing epidemic. 

“Almost one-fourth of the population is obese though not morbidly obese.

“The obese crowd varies from 6 to 70-year-olds and most ailments like diabetes, hypertension, kidney ailments, heart-related issues are triggered by obesity. It is a multi-factorial problem,” adds Dr Mahesh. 

Easy accessibility through technology has made things more complicated. 

“Mobility is lesser now and poor food habits have contributed to obesity,” he says. “From hailing a cab to shopping for groceries or food delivery, everything happens at the click of a button now. Teenagers to 35-year-olds are increasingly dependant on them and health issues in them are more. Lethargy, improper sleep patterns, low self-esteem are other issues connected to obesity, which can, in turn, add to more weight gain,” Dr Mahesh adds. 

Dr Ramya Raghavan, senior consultant (internal medicine), Columbia Asia Hospital agrees that overweight individuals are increasingly seen in the younger lot.

“In some cases, obesity can be evidently seen. Majority of the crowd consists of 30 to 40-year-olds, mostly working in the IT sector. Lifestyle and genetics come together for this phenomenon,” she adds. 

She adds that parents should instil good food habits in children from a young age.

“Refuse to buy junk food for them. Our traditional food like idly, dosa, chapathi and parathas are healthy options instead of cornflakes , sugary drinks and other ready-made items. Such foods only have empty calories and add to weight gain. Parents should restrict their wards from bad foods and introduce them to healthy options like fruits etc from a young age,” she adds.

“A treat once in a while is fine but do not make junk food a habit or an easy way out,” adds Dr Ramya.  

Dr Vikram Beliappa, surgical gastroenterologist, BR Life SSNMC Hospital, says that less than 5 per cent of the population depends on fitness gadgets and technology to deal with obesity.

“These are effective ways and should be used in tandem with a proper action plan. Though fitness trackers or gadgets are not going to help by themselves, a proper diet plan chalked out with a concrete exercise programme added to them can work wonders,” he says.

Follow the right track

Have overweight issues? Do these steps:

Consult a dietician/nutritionist. Create a proper diet plan.

Exercise regularly. Brisk walking/jogging for 45
minutes or 15 minutes of high-intensity exercises like zumba/aerobics.

Using fitness mobile applications and technology to track calories and schedule work-outs.

“Parents should draw the line. From instilling good food habits to reducing or minimising technology and TV binging, and encouraging outdoor activities, parents should watch their wards.”

Dr Mahesh Channappa, senior consultant (surgery and allied specialities) and bariatric surgery, Aster CMI Hospital

‘Obesity leading to fatty liver cases in 20-year-olds’

“Obesity related-health issues are common among youngsters now. We have seen cases of fatty liver among youngsters in their late 20s, which is largely because of a sedentary lifestyle, excessive calorie intake and increasing level of alcohol consumption.”

Dr Vikram Beliappa, surgical gastroenterologist, BR Life SSNMC Hospital.