It is easy to get caught up in the aesthetic reasons for losing weight, but it is also important to remember that one of the most important reasons to lose that extra weight is because of what you can't see: Inside your body.
I don't know if any of you guys caught the series "Living Large in America" on the Today Show a while back, but one segment where they took us through the affects of obesity on your insides and during surgery, has really stuck with me. Here's what they found:
- Enlarged liver. An obese person's liver can be twice the size of that of an average person's liver. Instead of a healthy brownish, reddish color, an obese person's liver is greasy yellow.
- Breathing is harder. An obese person's lung's are often smaller than those of an average person's lungs. This is because they get crushed under the pressure of the excess body mass.
- Enlarged heart. For every 2.2 lbs a person gains, the body creates about two miles of red blood vessels to compensate. For this reason an obese person's heart is often enlarged due to it having to work overtime to account for extra miles.
- Difficult to diagnosis. Diagnosis for an obese person is harder for doctors to determine as reading x-rays are much more difficult.
- Difficult during surgery. Surgery time for an obese person is often increased due to excess fat. This is in correlation to increased incision size, increased healing time and increased risk of infection.
- Hard on your knees. When you go up a step, you are putting pressure seven times your body weight on your knee joints, so an obese person's knees are at increased risk for injury with each and every pound.
To watch the segment online, check out MSNBC.com.