Obesity is a sensitive subject within the curvy community; most often our energy is directed toward fighting society's ridiculous standards of beauty or defending our humanity in a world that considers plus-size bodies "abnormal".
There comes a time though, when self-reflection, self-care, and self-love needs to become our main priorities.
This obesity discussion has nothing to do with trying to reach a certain aesthetic, and everything to do with health, wellness, and overall quality of life.
We are pro-health. Always.
It is surely possible to have a healthy curvy body.
However, we'd be terribly remiss if we didn't talk about the dangers associated with excessive body weight/fat coupled with poor nutrition or inadequate exercise.
The medical definition of obesity is:
an excessive amount of body fat, which makes the body more susceptible to certain diseases and health problems.
It is often diagnosed when an individual's body mass index (BMI) exceeds a set point (approx. 30).
BMI does have its limitations. It is not the most accurate measurement of body fat at all, but it is used by many medical professionals to determine whether or not a patient's current weight is healthy.
Your BMI is calculated by dividing your weight (in kilograms) by your height (in meters squared).
This causes problems for athletes, for example, because the BMI does not consider muscle mass. And often, athletes or bodybuilders are classified as obese, when they have very little body fat in reality.
Clearly this mode of measurement has its flaws.
So, who is considered obese according to this rubric?
Let's take a look at the chart.
Underweight - Below 18.5
Normal - 18.5-24.9
Overweight - 25.0-29.9
Obese - 30+
Extremely Obese - 40+
While there are other factors that may influence body weight (genetics, hormones, etc.), obesity generally occurs when you consume more calories than you burn.
The body stores these excess calories as fat.
Excessive body fat can lead to a host of complications. Some of which I'm sure you've heard time and time again. However, it's time to take these seriously and make the appropriate lifestyle adjustments.
Obese persons are more likely to experience:
Does this mean that only overweight people deal with these health issues? Absolutely not. However, excessive weight is strongly linked to the onset of such illnesses as diabetes. It creates conditions that make the body more susceptible to these problems.
Before beginning any nutritional changes, it would be best to contact your physician first. We are not medical professionals.
Many have successfully defeated obesity with a combination of regular exercise and a healthy nutritional lifestyle. Funk & Soul legend, Chaka Khan reversed diabetes and high blood pressure by adopting a vegan diet.
Vegan life is not for everyone though; and we understand that, but whatever approach you choose should incorporate plenty of water, nutrient-dense foods, and regular exercise.