Beating obesity

By on December 28, 2018
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New surgical procedures can aid diet restrictions and exercise in reducing the incidence of obesity

Obesity is a major health problem in India and around then world. Excess body fat is associated with many diseases and has high incidence of poor health, i.e. hypertension, heart diseases, diabetes, joint pains, respiratory problems, infertility, cancer and death (co-morbidities).

Surgical procedures, especially those performed on the abdomen, have been the the gold standard for curing many health issues for more than a century. Pain, blood loss, infection at the site of surgery, number of days of stay in the hospital, and return to work are  major concerns for  patients undergoing these procedures. Many might decide to not get operated for various problems with the fear of suffering.

Since the last few years, laparoscopic  or key hole surgery has revolutionised the management of such patients, giving them a great benefit in many ways. These include significantly reduced pain, minimal blood loss, no infections, early discharge from the hospital and quick return to work.

Laparoscopic surgery is the preferred method by a majority of the surgeons globally for many  gastrointestinal, thoracic and gynaecological surgeries. It is so convenient that a  procedure such as gallbladder stone surgery – which would otherwise require three or four days in hospital - requires only a day’s stay.

The  concerns about surgery are of great significance, particularly in relation to an overweight or obese patient. Obesity is assessed based on Body Mass Index (BMI), waist to hip ratio and  on waist circumference. Patients whose BMI is more than 32.5 with any co-morbidity or more than  35 require surgical intervention for sustained weight loss and a better quality of life.

Many of these patients enjoy the great advantage of recovering from diabetes and hence the name metabolic surgery. Even those  who find it extremely difficult to control diabetes will achieve good results with  surgery.  Diet control and exercise alone often fail to give sustained weight loss, thus exposing them to health risks.

The prevalence of obesity is as high as 33 per cent in some states and is only increasing! Many modern “remote controlled” lifestyle methods have resulted in this ever growing obese population. We could even call it an epidemic.

Childhood and adolescent obesity is a worrisome matter as there is fear of turning infertile .

Read the full article in 'Viva Goa' magazine copy.

Viva Goa magazine is now on stands. Available at all major book stalls and supermarkets in Goa.


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