I don’t think many of us realize just how many health problems result from being overweight. In fact, it was a health problem that actually prompted me to go to the doctor the day I had that wake-up call about my weight. I was having trouble breathing, and the doctor said it was probably obesity-related asthma.
Over time, it turned out I was really suffering from mild hypertension and anxiety, but in going through the motions of diagnosis, I learned a lot about the things I was doing to my body by not taking action. Hypertension can lead to stroke and heart attack, not to mention all that artery-clogging cholesterol.
One of the things they tested me for numerous times was type-2 diabetes, which becomes more common among the overweight every single day. Fortunately, the tests came back negative, but so many of my friends and family who are battling their weight have already been diagnosed with that life-altering disease.
Obesity can cause sleep apnea, a disorder that actually causes you to stop breathing while you sleep. A disorder that I have suffered from for years, but have seen vast improvements in since I lost weight.
It’s scary, and as much as I liked to tell myself I was doing wrong by me at the time, the impact of all the damage I’d done didn’t really start to sink in until something might actually be wrong.
The good news is, even if you’ve done damage to your body, every pound you lose is a health improvement. It may not seem like it at first, but your joints begin to repair themselves from the shock of all that excess weight. Your body functions better, lowering blood pressure and if you’ve done things the right way, possibly even your cholesterol. Weight loss can reduce your risks of both asthma and type-2 diabetes, and even help you get it under control if you’ve already been diagnosed.
It’s tough when you’re overweight not to feel defeated and tired. Carrying around more weight than your body is built to haul is exhausting, I know, but it doesn’t take long before you start feeling physically better, even if you can only take baby steps toward a healthier you at first.