Obesity tends to affect everyone. It doesn’t matter whether you are young or old. Yet it affects differently for the different age group of people. This is very important to know as it may determine if and how obesity should be treated in older adults and if weight reduction surgery is a good bet or not.
A person might be always obese apart from the below given reason but with age the associated complication will be more or worse if not treated. During old age, a person is more prone to illness and becomes physically inactive. This can tend to loosen in the muscles and in turn, gets replaced with fats. The person’s BMI might not change but as the fat increases so do the chances of being affected by obesity and its related diseases. As you grow old, you often get shorter. This is due to osteoporosis and spinal vertebral issues that take away inches in older age.
If you remember that the BMI is a measure calculated from height and weight, you will understand that a change in height will change BMI as well. In fact, if one weighs the same, and their height is less, then the BMI will be falsely higher and one might be classified as overweight while in reality, the person is not. Even though BMI is the accepted measure for weight classification you should understand that it has its limitations.
It’s commonly known and scientifically proven that obesity is prone to many diseases. In fact, the majority of organs and body systems are negatively affected by obesity. Most commonly, diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, heart disease and certain cancers are encountered in patients affected by obesity. When an elderly has the problem of obesity at this age it can become life-threatening. All these diseases along with obesity if not treated properly can become life-threatening at this age. Many a times, these diseases can cause a stroke and be the reason of death.
Obesity also affects cognition, which includes the way we process information, memory, comprehension, problem-solving and decisions. These functions are known to deteriorate with age and studies show that they deteriorate more rapidly in the population affected by obesity. This effect of obesity is more common with older age, as proper cognition help the elderly live fuller and more independent lives.
It is necessary that treatment for obesity should be considered as soon as possible. But if a patient’s health has gone too far and medication and other treatment does not work, then weight reduction surgery might be advised by the doctor. The existing medical problems, surgical risk and benefits from the surgery need to be closely analyzed by the medical team and discussed with the patient to ensure an optimal decision and a satisfactory outcome.