Obesity is a healthcare concern in the world. It is already being considered a pandemic within several medical and research circles. It has been found that obesity is generally associated with several other diseases which are chronic. Researches have shown Type-2 diabetes, brain stroke, cardiovascular diseases, cancer, thrombosis, and many others are due to obesity. Obesity today is one of the leading causes of death. Besides this, it also reduces the quality of life and overall lifespan. Several factors have proved that Obesity can lead to severity and deaths in the cases of Covid-19 too.
Who are obese?
To explain obesity in easily understandable words, it has been linked with Body Mass Index (BMI). One can easily calculate BMI using calculators also available here. . If your BMI is greater than 30 you are obese. The number may vary a bit for children however it is a good way of indexing obesity in adults.
Obesity and Immune system
There have been many types of research proving that obesity weakens the immune system. This makes an obese person more vulnerable to infectious diseases. Further, if infected, an obese person is at higher risk of the disease turning severe requiring almost definite hospitalization. It also increases the probability of death.
Adipose tissue, commonly known as body fat cells where our body stores fats. These subcutaneous deposits, found under our skin or around an internal organ known as a visceral deposit, both types significantly reduce the composition of immune cells. There is a disruption in the balance between pro-inflammation and anti-inflammation immune cells in obese people. Since adipose favors pro-inflammation response, the body always starts to remain in the state of low-grade inflammation chronic in nature. When a Covid-19 infection occurs, our body creates an acute inflammation response. The chronic and acute inflammation join together to have severe disease symptoms leading to poorer outcomes.
Lipid from adipose tissue also clogs the lymphoid tissues thereby affecting the circulation system. This results in impacting the development and activation of immune cells. This is the reason that even after vaccination, obese people’s activated response is low. Obese individual’s body also undergoes several changes in how metabolism takes place. Insulin and leptin resistance develops which negatively influences immune cell growth. An alteration in Glucose metabolism, essential nutrients absorption, and other essential processes makes medicinal responses slow leading to more severity and death.
Solution is simple
Obesity is a pandemic in itself. However, there are certain changes which one can make in their lifestyles and can easily overcome this problem. The Association of obesity with so many internal changes is so complicated that the chances of getting an infection increase many folds. The studies have shown that deaths in individuals with BMI greater than 35 were 75% likely.
A few things we can start today
- Healthy eating
- Minimum 150 minutes of moderate exercise
- Weight training program is welcome as it increases rest metabolic rate
- Reduce salt and sugar intake
- Increase water intake
- Stop consumption of saturated fat
- Reduce or stop consumption of processed food
- Increase fruits and vegetables in your diet
- Ensure that diet is high in fiber
- Reduce stress
- Increase protein intake