Millions of Americans throughout the United States could be considered obese by national standards. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that as many as 1 in 3 adults are currently obese in the U.S. Unfortunately, carrying around all the extra weight has dramatic health effects on the body, from increasing your risks for heart disease and diabetes, to even increasing risks for certain cancers. Obesity may not only be linked to serious chronic health issues, but increasingly more research points to weight problems being associated with a greater risk for chronic pain.
Small scale studies over the last decade have pointed to the connection between pain and obesity. In a much larger study of one million Americans, published in the January online edition of “Obesity,” research shows an even greater link between to the two health issues. There are several possible theories as to why the two are linked. For example, weight places greater stress on the joints, especially the ankles, knees and lower back, resulting in both increased inflammation and pain. Excess fat on the body may also trigger physiological processes in the body which increase pain and inflammation. Those who are overweight are also at a higher risk for arthritis, which can cause debilitating pain and swelling in the joints. Even weight-related depression can contribute to issues with pain, suggests the obesity study.
If you are suffering from chronic pain, weight loss may be the answer. Even if your pain is associated with other ailments, losing weight can positively impact your future health, and may even increase both your lifespan and quality of life. Losing weight can seem like an overwhelming task, but with medical weight loss assistance from your weight loss clinic you can achieve your goal weight and start living a healthier lifestyle.