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The Obesity-Hypertension Connection

Obesity is not just a cosmetic consideration. It is a chronic medical disease that can lead to diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, gallstones, and other chronic illnesses. Obesity is a risk factor for a number of cancers. Obesity is difficult to treat and has a high relapse rate.

Ethnicity
Ethnicity factors may influence the age of onset and the rapidity of weight gain.

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Childhood weight
A person’s weight during childhood, the teenage years, and early adulthood may also influence the development of adult obesity. For example,

  • Being mildly overweight in the early 20s was linked to a substantial incidence of obesity by age 35;
  • Being overweight during older childhood is highly predictive of adult obesity, especially if a parent is also obese;
  • Being overweight during the teenage years is even a greater predictor of adult obesity.

Hormones
Women tend to gain weight especially during certain events such as pregnancy, menopause, and in some cases, with the use of oral contraceptives. However, with the availability of the lower-dose estrogen pills, weight gain has not been as great a risk.