Metabolism factors that Cause Obesity- Obesity Surgery Guide

It is a fact of life that some people can eat whatever they like and not put any weight whereas others only have to look at a cake and the weight goes on.  This is due to your metabolism which controls the rate at which food is converted into energy.  Another way of looking at it is the speed in which you burn off calories or your ‘thermogenic potential'.  Some people have a faster metabolism, or a higher thermogenic potential, which enables them to burn off calories quicker than someone with a slower metabolism.

What scientists have recently found is that people who have a
slower metabolism crave fattening foods more so than people with a faster metabolism.  They often enjoyed their food more and tended to be less active.

Metabolism can be speeded up or slowed down.  Exercise will increase your metabolism whereas dieting slows it down.  Many people find that when they try to lose weight that initially, the pounds do come off but after a bit they creep back on.  What happens then is that you reduce your calorie intake even more but you still can't lose any more weight.

What are the reasons for this?  What happens is that we all have a ‘set point' or a thermostat if you like which controls the level of resistance to weight loss or gain.  Since the beginning of time we have been programmed to maintain a set weight and level of body fat for survival.  A reduction in food intake signals to the body that it is experiencing a ‘famine': the body goes into survival mode which means a lowering of the metabolism and conserving fat and energy stores.  Your thermostat responds by lowering its resistance which is fine whilst you maintain this reduced intake however… 

The problem here is that if you return to normal eating patterns, your metabolism is slower than before and is used to a lower calorie intake.  Once you increase that calorie intake then you will put on weight. 

Ideally, you should avoid ‘crash diets' and aim to lose weight sensibly, say a couple of pounds a week.  This gradual reduction in food intake will not slow down your metabolism and the weight is more likely to stay off.

Another factor is that muscle burns off more calories than fat.  If you have a higher percentage of fat to muscle then you will have a slower metabolism and a tendency to gain weight.  Muscle in terms of metabolism is one of the most active tissues in the body.  The more muscle you have the faster the rate of fat burning. 

This is where women tend to lose out: men typically have a greater amount of muscle mass than women why is why they often find it easier to burn off body fat. 

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  6. Hormones and obesity
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