On Your Health

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Three Obesity Factors and How You Manage Them


by Dr. Meredith McKee, INTEGRIS internal medicine physician

There are three main factors that cause obesity; behavior, environment, and genetics. Dr. Meredith McKee, an internal medicine physician with INTEGRIS Family Care Central, examines these causes and how you manage each one individually.

Hi, I'm Doctor Meredith McKee. I'm an internal medicine physician at INTEGRIS Family Care Central. I'm here today to talk to you about obesity.

What causes obesity? There are three main factors that cause obesity - behavior, environment, and genetics. In today's fast paced environment, it's easy to adopt unhealthy behaviors. Behavior relates to food choices, the amount of physical activity you get, and your overall effort to maintain your health. We're consuming more calories today than 10 years ago. Portion sizes are larger and fast food is more prevalent than ever before. Pay attention to what you're eating and make time to get some good regular exercise.

Environmental factors play a key role in our health habits. We use technology to make things easier. But sometimes at the cost of our physical activity. In Oklahoma, we drive cars instead of walking or riding a bike. We watch TV instead of spending time outdoors. Make an effort to think about ways to increase your physical activity level. For example, park in the farthest spot when going to the store. Or take the stairs instead of the elevator.

While genetics can play a role in obesity, not everyone who is predisposed to obesity will become obese. Choosing to make lifestyle changes can have a huge impact and can overcome many genetic challenges you may face.

If you have concerns about obesity for yourself or a loved one, you should talk to your doctor.

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Three Obesity Factors and How You Manage Them

There are three main factors that cause obesity: behavior, environment and genetics.