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Is Obesity Defined by Weight or Lifestyle?

We all have that one skinny friend who can eat practically anything they want without piling on excess kilos. Before you start envying that person and their super-fast metabolism, it’s important to remember that your weight doesn’t necessarily indicate how healthy you are.

By taking other factors, such as adrenal and thyroid function, metabolic type and the lymphatic system into consideration, Chi of Life can has been able to get a much more accurate answer to the question, “How does obesity affect the body?”

There’s no dispute that being overweight puts you at greater risk of developing chronic diseases, not to mention the effect it can have on your energy levels and self-esteem. However, obesity is a complex condition, and it would be overly simplistic to assume that not being overweight guarantees good health. In the end, no matter how much you weigh, it’s your day-to-day habits that most accurately reflect how healthy you are.

If you’re trying to learn more about how your body works in order to become healthier, these are the most important reasons why lifestyle plays just as big a role as weight when we consider the health risks associated with obesity.

Obesity Characteristics

Just because your BMI (body mass index) doesn’t fall within the obese range, if you live an unhealthy lifestyle, there’s a chance you will suffer from the same symptoms a heavily overweight person would. If you experience any of the following, you might want to consider overhauling your everyday diet and exercise habits:

  • Shortness of breath when walking up hills or stairs
  • Vulnerability to cravings
  • Consistently low energy levels
  • High cholesterol and/or blood pressure
  • Gallstones
  • Making excuses to not cook something healthy.

Your Metabolism Matters

In order to appreciate why obesity is just as much a lifestyle problem as it is a weight problem, it is necessary to understand how metabolisms work. Your metabolic rate refers to how fast your body breaks down and digests food. People with a fast metabolic rate will often struggle to maintain weight and muscle, as their body is capable of completing this process rapidly. This might sound like a dream come true to some, but it can lead to serious health problems. Not having to worry so much about gaining weight means that people with fast metabolisms are often vulnerable to developing unhealthy eating habits. They may not have to deal with the sudden weight gain in the same way someone with a slow metabolism would, but that doesn’t make them immune to the damaging effects of junk food.

Health Is Not Skin Deep

Regardless of their appearance, in most cases it’s impossible to determine someone’s health simply by looking at them. We may have been conditioned to think that thin equals healthy, but it’s not uncommon for a slim physique to hide an array of health problems. For example, conditions such as diabetes and high cholesterol are commonly associated with weight gain, but people with a low BMI are also susceptible to these conditions. In addition to lifestyle, genetics also play a role in your likelihood of developing chronic diseases, which is why it’s essential to regularly assess your physical wellbeing. At Chi of Life, we understand that healthy bodies come in all shape and sizes, and that true health is achieved by feeling good, not just looking good.

Time is of the Essence

If you are lucky enough to have been born with a fast metabolism, don’t expect it to last forever. Once we reach our mid-twenties, most metabolisms begin to slow down a little each year, making it progressively harder to lose weight. Other factors, such as thyroid problems and certain medications, are also known to have an impact on metabolism speed. If you want to make the most of your metabolic rate, it’s always important to take care of your body, regardless of your age or how much you weigh.

If you think your lifestyle may be affecting your health, Chi of Life can help you adjust not only your physical appearance, but also your mindset. Reach out to our friendly team today to find out more about the services offered at the Chi of Life Weight Loss & Wellness Retreat.