Calories are taken in through food. They are used through physical activity and basic body functions. Excess weight gain occurs when this relationship is not kept in balance. High caloric intake and low usage will cause weight gain. If this happens regularly it will lead to obesity.
Factors that can influence obesity are:
Risk factors include:
- Advancing age
- Working varied shifts
- Decreased activity
- Sedentary lifestyle—Getting too little exercise and spending too much time in front of a TV or computer can contribute to obesity in children and adults.
- Imbalance of excess calories versus decreased activity
- High level of fast food intake
- High alcohol consumption
- Eating foods with a high glycemic index such as refined carbohydrates (eg, instant mashed potatoes, baked white potatoes, instant rice)
- Eating until full and eating quickly
- Not getting enough sleep (a risk factor in children)
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