The Real Cost of Obesity on your Health
on: November 3, 2009, 2:33 am
is responsible for 9,000 premature deaths a year in England. It
reduces life expectancy by, on average, 9 years. The Department
of Health’s Change4Life campaign also advises that after
quitting smoking, keeping a healthy body weight is one of the
best ways to reduce your chances of getting cancer. *
all these home truths, why are so many people ignoring the real
cost that obesity can have on their health?
dietitian and Head of Weight Management Services at The Hospital
Group, Cirian Marie-Beddoes, said: “One of the most prevalent
health issues for the obese is diabetes. 2.5 million** people
in the UK suffer from Diabetes and a great proportion of those
with Type 2 could be cured if they lost their excess weight. “Obesity
is recognised as the main factor in contracting Type 2 diabetes,
which can lead to further complications such as foot ulceration,
nepthropathy, retinopathy and heart disease – all with serious
risks and discomfort for the patient, but also costly to treat.”
published by the American Journal for Medicine*** showed that
following obesity surgery, 87% of type 2 diabetics either saw
a complete cure or improvement.
added: “We are in a recession, but eating out has become
the norm – the team of dietitians at The Hospital Group
find that obese families think nothing of popping out for all-you-can
eat pizza or Chinese on a regular basis. “This is the root
of the problem. People who maintain a clinically obese body weight
have a habit of consuming body-builder levels of calories and
of course that has to change with a restricted calorie intake.
“But it’s also a case of looking at what makes up
a person’s diet. You can consume 1,000 high-quality calories
and blossom or the same number of calories in junk food and you’ll
Comments regarding obese individuals and their health which stood
out included the following:
• “My work suffered
because I took too many days off due to illness.”
• “I was always tired.”
“I was limited as to what I could do in life – for
example, I could not lift anything because of my Arthritis and
Key findings of the report:
22% of the obese people questioned suffered from back pain as
a result of their weight.
15% of the obese people questioned suffered from heart burn or
reflex as a result of their weight.
11% of the obese people questioned suffered from arthritis as
a result of their weight.
9% of the obese people questioned suffered from diabetes as a
result of their weight.
Weekly spending on personal food allowance is vastly increased
for the obese people questioned –(NB only 30 severely obese
to mysupermarket.co.uk, a family of four’s average weekly
food shop is £100 – so at £61.70 a week, the
severely obese are eating enough to feed more than two people.
The Report also included a case study of John Hatchman, who turned
his life around by undergoing a gastric band surgery to take control
of his weight:
43, had a gastric
band in 2008 and lost 6 stone.
was injecting 200 units of insulin a day because of my obesity-induced
diabetes. Having lost the weight, I’m completely cured.”
explains: “I’d struggled with my weight for nearly
15 years and had severe type 2 diabetes and was insulin dependent
- injecting myself five times a day with 200 units of insulin.
I also suffered with sleep apnoea as a result of my obesity. I
could see the harm I was doing to myself and was just fed up of
being fat. “Following my surgery, I can’t tell you
how much better I feel, my diabetes has gone, as has my sleep
apnoea - I no longer have to use a C Pap Machine to help me breathe.
gone from a 40 inch waist to a 32 and XXXL shirt to a M. I can
go swimming, stay awake longer, and even silly things like being
able to tie my shoe laces without getting breathless. I also work
as a carer in a children’s home, so being able to move about
is crucial. My obesity
surgery has given me my health, and my life, back.”
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total
sample size was 2056 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between
5th-7th October 2009. The survey was carried out online. The figures
have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged
OnePoll questioned 4000 adults between 19-21 October 2009. The
survey was carried out online and the panel used was aged 16+
and nationally representative.
For more information, key case studies or expert comment,
Felicity Cross or Lucy Kemp on:
or Phone on: 0121 616 5800