Causes and effects of obesity

Causes of obesity

Obesity is an epidemic caused by genetic and environmental factors which have significant effects on human population. According to Bhadoria et al., (2015) obesity is when one’s body mass index (BMI) has exceeded 85% to 95th percentile. Different parameters such a densitometry, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can be used to check the body fat percentage. Bray describes the primary cause of obesity as the imbalance between the indigested food and the amount of energy released (2004). Thus, the excess energy released is channeled to the fat cells. Overweight’s are prone to diabetes, heart disease, cancer and psychological disorders. Therefore, obesity is majorly caused by poor lifestyle including eating disorder and lack of exercise, which leads to medical, academic and socio-emotional consequences.

Obesity is linked to poor dietary preferences, parental upbringing classified in to socio-cultural, psychological, environmental and genetic factors. Socio cultural factors include use of food to control or motivate certain behaviors (Bhadoria et al., (2015). Doing so, could lead excess eating which translates obesity. Also, studies indicate that is a high correlation between depression and eating disorders (Bhadoria et al., (2015). Although the relationship is unidirectional, depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and emotional problems trigger excess eating behaviors. Bhadoria et al., (2015) explains that children in less secure areas are prone to overweight as their parents prefer driving them to school as opposed to walking. Besides, social media has triggered most of them to adopt sedentary lifestyles which makes them eat more spend less energy as they are in one place. Genetics play a role in the child’s BMI.

The major negative effects of obesity is diseases such as diabetes.  Bray associates about 65% of diabetes mellitus cases to obesity; in which of the 11.7 million diabetic patients, 67% die because of overweight (Bray, 2004). Thus, overweight could not only be disease causing but also fatal.


Bhadoria, A., Sahoo, K., Sahoo, B., Choudhury, A., Sufi, N., & Kumar, R. (2015). Childhood obesity: Causes and consequences. Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care4(2), 187.

Bray, G. A. (2004). Medical consequences of obesity. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism89(6), 1.

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