Oh no! Not another article on weight loss, right? Absolutely. There are more than enough sources on the internet to confuse you about why you need to lose weight and a million ways on how to do it, all with mixed results for the discerning individual.
As a doctor, let me tell you more important reasons why you actually need to lose weight.
1. Lose Weight For Your Doctor
Let’s face it. The more weight you gain, the more difficult it becomes for your doctor to treat you, and that will in turn frustrate you as well.
Cue in some examples:
1. Obesity is linked to various medical conditions you are probably already aware of. If you are hoping your doctor can perform miracles for you, here’s the lowdown – none of those conditions can be cured. That’s right.
High blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and/or heart conditions (ischaemic heart disease – commonly referred to as heart blocks), can only be treated or controlled to a certain extent. Unfortunately, there is no cure. The moment such conditions are diagnosed, the clock of borrowed time starts ticking. Depending on how good your doctor is, the mix of drugs and procedures where needed, will try and ensure that the rest of your life will have a decent quality and that you live long enough. However, the key word there is “try”. Rest is entirely up to the body of that individual and the way his/her lifestyle treats it.
2. Obese patients are difficult to treat or make happy – Period! Imagine this for a moment. You weigh 120+ kilos. Your entire weight is being carried by your two legs. Your hip and knee joints gradually wear out, give up and give you a heck lot of unbearable pain. You will start upgrading your walking aids, from sticks to a fancy mobility scooter. Cue in the doctor! “Please give me a new joint and relieve me of my misery!”. A very happy Orthopaedic doctor says ‘of course! Joint replacement surgeries are my forte!’ Little does the patient know that while yes, it is fairly easy to replace a joint for a trained doctor, the results are far from 100%. At the most, you might be able to walk better and get pain relief, but never, and I mean never, the way you could before.
3. Where are your veins, sir? I need to give you these medications that can save your life. Oh no! They are almost invisible thanks to all that fat! Sounds rude? Nope. This is a very common scenario medical professionals face in hospitals. The delay in treatment for an obese sick or critical patient, can also be put down to how difficult it is for the treating doctors to find intravenous access to deliver vital medications to help you get better.
4. Recovery? Well this is an easy one. Will a fit-as-a-fiddle or an unhealthy obese individual recover faster from a surgery or any illness that needed hospitalization? Obese individuals’ road to recovery are definitely longer and met with more complications than a fit individual. Once they are discharged home, those woes continue for a while before normalcy can perhaps follow.
5. No more options? Your doctor has tried numerous combinations of drugs to lower your blood pressure, diabetes and or high cholesterol levels. Despite efforts, those arteries in your heart are still getting more and more clogged, and eventually you get a heart attack. So have the drugs failed you? Technically yes, since you expected them to prevent this. But that boils down back to our point number one – there is no cure. These conditions continue to cause gradual effects on your body till the very end.
2. Your Wallet Urges You To Lose Weight
It is very obvious, that once the medical conditions linked to obesity are diagnosed, you are going to spend a lot of money till the very end, and no, I would not call that an investment. Hospital visits, consultation charges, medicines, procedures, all add up to hefty bills, and if it’s a crooked doc, those cycles could double. The healthcare sector is becoming more and more business oriented, and pretty plainly are getting their business out of YOUR medical issues.
All the money you saved for larger things in life, could end up going into hospital bills, that end up being very large in today’s world.
3. Consider Weight Loss For Your Family
Ever heard of care-giver fatigue? It is real. Family members who make a lot of sacrifices and spend a lot of time and energy taking care of you, eventually have to face mental demons of their own. Hospital visits, staying with you in hospital, paying bills, helping you for all your physical needs, day in day out, while balancing work and their own family life eventually takes a huge toll on them. If it is a loved one, they do it because they care, but you wouldn’t help but feel that your health is becoming a burden on them. Your family members only wish that your health improves, but they will be part of that difficult journey for a long time.
So, there you have it, 3 unusual reasons to lose weight.
I could have made this more boring by making this article more scientific and “doctor” approved. I personally feel, that is unnecessary for the non-medical population. You already know enough. All the “evidence based” links between weight and health conditions, longevity etc. Plentiful of diets (fads or not) and exercise suggestions are readily available for you.
So where is the silver lining in this grim sounding article?
Fret not. Here it is:
Most of us lose weight to look good. The rest attempt to lose weight, once medical issues linked to being overweight ensue. Here’s my suggestion: Why not lose weight so that you do not end up in situations like the few examples mentioned above! For your doctor, for your wallet and for your family.
Losing weight and trying out various ways to achieve your goals can be an exciting journey. Humans are happiest when they are trying to achieve a goal. The journey to that goal is adventurous, challenging and self-healing. Weight loss remains a very common goal shared by the majority of us humans in today’s world. Whether that is impacted by social media or celebrities, does not matter. What matters, is that you are doing it for your own health.
Your body is a supremely sensitive yet powerful tool to help you achieve wonders throughout your life. How you treat it will affect your life’s goals. There is no point in having a beautiful mind, but not having the able tool to action its’ goals. Just as you cannot expect to reach a far-off destination in a poorly maintained old car, a poorly maintained body will not be able to support you in achieving your goals the way you wish.
Investing in health (before it goes wrong) is the best investment one can do in their lifetime. Sure, you want to become a billionaire, but you need a well-functioning mind and body for that, and most importantly, sufficient time in your life to do that. So, the amount of time you put into exercise and a healthy lifestyle, will increase the time you have on this beautiful planet, and well, sorry to sound clichéd, make your life more beautiful! Time is money, after all. If you gain a few more years in your lifetime because you took good care of your health, then how much more riches await you. What’s more is that you end up saving on a huge deal of money and time that would otherwise go for your hospital visits and bills.
To end this article on a selfish note, do not forget that losing weight will also make your doctor happy. Haha. Treating you becomes easier, the results are rewarding, and eventually both you and I are happy. Win-win!