Causes of obesity

Essentially obesity is caused when the number of calories consumed through eating is greater than the calories used in physical activity. The excess energy is stored by the body in the form of fat.

Morbid obesity is a complex medical disorder, however, and there are a number of other contributing factors.

  • Genetics can be a key factor in understanding obesity and its causes. It has been proven that the chance of having morbid obesity is increased if other people in your family have the condition.
  • It has also been suggested that psychological and environmental factors can influence your body weight. Psychological factors influence the way you eat, as well as what you eat. A number of people eat in response to certain emotions such as boredom, sadness, or anger.
  • Environmental factors could include your lifestyle behaviours, for example the way in which you cook food, the type of job you have and also whether you incorporate exercise within your day-to-day life.
  • Another significant cause of obesity is an inability to understand what it is to be 'full'. Most people are aware when they are full through eating because our stomach tells our brain it is full and to stop. However in some individuals there is a flaw in this process. By not identifying when the stomach is full, some individuals continue to consume more food. If they also carry out limited physical activity then this results in weight gain.

Severe and morbid obesity are hugely detrimental to your overall health and wellbeing. As well the risk to general health, it can also lead to premature death.