Why am I overweight?

You are not Alone

Obesity in the U.S. is truly an epidemic. Currently, 35.7% of adults are obese and 68.8% are obese or overweight. It is projected that by 2050 over 42% of adults will be obese and 1 in 3 Americans will have diabetes. For the first time, in 2013, the American Medical Association classified obesity as a chronic disease.

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Genetics

Genetics certainly plays a role in obesity. The vast majority of our patients have parents or family members who struggle with their weight.

Behavior

This is where our personal choices regarding our diet and exercise play a role. All too many of us (including Dr Clark) spend too much time at their desk on a computer. This has lead many of us to have a mostly sedentary life. When you add this into eating more processed fast foods it is a bad combination.

Environment

Society plays a large role in obesity as well. Our culture many times is centered around social events with large quantities of food. Weddings, birthdays, holidays and work parties all introduce opportunities to eat and overeat food.

The Set Point: Putting it all together

There is no one reason why someone is overweight or obese. It is a combination of all these factors. Exciting research on obesity is showing our brain has a “Set Point” that helps regulate the amount of fat we carry. Think of it like a thermostat. Each of our unique genetics and developmental history causes us to respond differently to factors in our environment like the change in chemical and nutrient content of our food, increased stress, decreased physical activity, inadequate and disrupted sleep, and the use of medications that promote weight gain. Some people respond by gaining weight.

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