The Effects of Obesity: What Are the Health Risks?

The presence of obesity increases the risk that you have to develop a number of medical conditions, including cancer. Defined as a co-morbid condition, these are all health concerns that are related to the primary disease of obesity. 

There are many health conditions related to morbid obesity, but some of the most common are:

  • Type 2 diabetes, which can lead to heart disease, kidney failure, blindness, amputation of the feet or legs and nerve damage,
  • Heart disease, such as hardening of the arteries, heart attack and angina,
  • High blood pressure, which can lead to heart disease, stroke, kidney failure and vision loss,
  • High cholesterol, which can lead to heart disease, stroke and kidney failure,
  • Obstructive sleep apnea has been associated with high blood pressure,
  • Acid reflux/GERD, which can lead to esophagitis, Barrett's esophagus and esophageal cancer (adenocarcinoma),
  • Cancer,
  • Depression,
  • Osteoarthritis and joint pain, which can lead to loss of mobility,
  • Stress urinary incontinence,
  • Female reproductive health disorder, which can lead to infertility and sexual dysfunction,
  • An emerging body of literature demonstrating relationships between maternal obesity and structural birth defects, including:
    • Increased risk of spina bifida and heart defects in the infant,
    • Decreased risk of gastroschisis in the infant.

How is BMI Correlated to these Conditions?

While any individual with obesity is at risk for developing these conditions, these conditions occur more frequently in individuals with morbid obesity. Mortality rates from many of these conditions are also higher among those with morbid obesity. Calculate your BMI and learn if you are at risk.

Concerned about Your Risks?

If you are concerned about whether you are at risk for these co-morbid condition as a person suffering from obesity, we can help. We offer both nutritional services and bariatrics to help you at any point along your journey to a healthier lifestyle. Learn whether you qualify for weight loss surgery or browse more of our articles and recipes to learn how to improve your health.