What is Obesity

For some, obesity is Genetic

Patients with obesity frequently report being hungry all the time, or need big meals to feel satisfied. Hunger is regulated by the Hypothalamus- the part of the brain that controls the body’s metabolic mechanisms.

It is thought that the hunger-regulating part of the hypothalamus does not function correctly in people with genetic obesity- it continues to stimulate hunger and food desire all the time, even when your body has plenty of energy reserves. Perhaps it is like the low-fuel warning light in a car constantly flickering on even though you’ve just filled the tank. This is frequently genetic, and leads to both overeating and poor food choices, and over time leads to obesity.

Another important observation is that people who are constantly hungry often seem drawn toward high calorie snacks and meals. Such foods are often high in sugar and fat, such as pizza, chocolate, fried foods, and sweets. Treatment by weight loss surgery is highly effective in overcoming this type of overeating a our procedures work by inducing appetite control though hunger reduction and portion restriction. Read more about our three main weight loss procedures, the Gastric Band, Gastric Sleeve or Gastric Bypass.

For others, overeating is emotional

Comfort eating to cope with stress, anxiety, boredom and low mood is very common. Chocolate, ice-cream, lollies, or cheese, crackers and chips are the usual quick-fix food as they give a temporary ‘hit’. Psychologists believe that we are programmed from birth to be soothed by food – we have all seen the way a baby stops crying when put on the breast. Sometimes a serious or traumatic life event may trigger a person to revert back to using food to help them feel better. Of course, we all know that this doesn’t really work logically, and often we might actually feel worse about ourselves after an episode of comfort eating. However, emotions can be very powerful and at times even control us!

Over time regular emotional eating can lead to significant weight gain, and the development of health complications such as type-2 diabetes. Fortunately, emotional eating can be overcome. At OClinic we take a direct approach to helping patients overcome emotional eating by performing surgical procedures which physically limit the amount of food that can be eaten, combined with regular individual and group psychological and dietary counselling. The procedures that work most effectively at controlling emotional calorie intake are the gastric sleeve and gastric bypass.

Whatever the reason is for one’s obesity, doctors all agree that it must be treated because of the health risks associated with being dangerously overweight. Click here to read about health risks, or click here to read about our treatment options.