It seems even the risk of cancer cannot persuade Brits to drop their excess baggage

Brits do not seem to possess enough motivation to shift those extra pounds it seems according to findings published this week by Cancer Research UK. At Medical Specialists Pharmacy we have already looked into many serious health issues that are directly linked to obesity such as lumbar disc degeneration of the back, and how having a poor diet is linked to high blood pressure and erectile dysfunction.

Cancer Research UK say there is an increasing number of kidney and womb cancer cases being diagnosed, and that more and more of these can be linked to obesity. Smoking is still the main culprit for causing cancer, but being overweight or obese comes in second in terms of cancer risks that you can actually do something about to avoid.  In fact recent data compiled by Cancer Research UK, showed that more than four in 10 cancers could be prevented by people making positive changes to their lifestyle.

Amongst those who answered questions for Cancer Research UK’s latest study, 68% of the overweight women claimed that they lacked the required willpower to lose weight. This was 8% more than the men who admitted the same thing. Overall, 87% of those surveyed did say they wanted to lose weight, but then problems such as ‘having too many other things to worry about’ and ‘ trying it before and not being successful’ were listed as reasons that eventually prevented them for losing weight.

In the midst of a recession, it can be understandable that a lack of money could be one of the main things people are ‘worrying’ about these days. But surely your short and long-term health is just as important? Overweight and obese individuals may regret the decision to decide to give up the admittedly tasking chore of losing those love handles, but bear in mind just some of the many health risks that are associated with obesity:

. High blood pressure (hypertension).

. Type 2 diabetes.

. High cholesterol.

. Joint and back pains.

. Severe tiredness or the inability to exert energy into physical activity.

. Poor circulation, ultimately leading to erectile dysfunction, as explained in great detail here.

. Psychological problems such as low self-esteem, confidence and feeling isolated.

Dr Harpal Kumar is chief executive for Cancer Research UK and he gave his views on the obesity crisis, “Unless we tackle the obesity epidemic in the UK, we risk cancer cases soaring. We understand that it can be extremely hard for people to maintain a healthy weight but keeping those extra pounds at bay could ultimately save your life.”

Dr Susan Jebb, head of diet and population health at the Medical Research Council, added to Dr Kumar’s comments and said, “It’s encouraging that most people recognise a poor diet and lack of physical activity significantly increase their risk of developing cancer. But it’s also clear that most people find it hard to turn their good intentions – to eat better and move more – into sustained changes in their lifestyle.  This gap between knowledge and behaviour helps to explain why the number of people who are obese is continuing to increase. Research shows that to make sustained changes in diet and physical activity people need tangible support from family, friends or health professionals. In the longer term, it’s important that the places we live and work make the healthier choice the easier choice, so healthy living becomes a way of life, not a matter of personal willpower.”

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