Obesity is one of the major health concerns that plague America today. Approximately two-thirds of American adults are considered overweight; while one in three are seriously overweight or obese.
Obesity is defined as having an abnormal amount of body fat; being 20 to 30 percent over the ideal weight for age, sex and height.
Aside from being a major cosmetic concern, obesity is a great risk factor for serious medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, kidney troubles, prostate enlargement, female infertility, uterine fibroids, pregnancy disorders, gallstones, cardiovascular diseases, stroke and cancer. Excessive body weight also puts great stress on joints increasing the chances of arthritis.
Everyone's metabolism (the rate at which the body burns calories) is different and is influenced by many factors, including genetics. Regularly eating even a few more calories than your body needs can lead to weight gain. By consuming only 100 extra calories a day, for example, you'll gain a pound in approximately a month (a pound of body fat equals 3,500 calories). Some experts think a sedentary lifestyle influences weight gain even more than eating too many calories. Exercise burns calories and builds muscle. And the more muscle mass you have, the greater number of calories your body burns at rest.