Obesity is defined as being 'grossly fat or overweight'. Statistics from Monash University indicate that in Australia 14 million people are either overweight or obese - this is around 56% of the entire population.
This rate is double what it was twenty years ago, and represents a serious threat to public health, greater in fact than smoking, which it has overtaken as the main cause of illness and premature death in Australia.
Being obese significantly increases the risk of developing a range of serious medical conditions. These include:
- Asthma (adult onset).
- Blood clots.
- Cancer – especially bowel cancer and breast cancer.
- Fatty liver disease.
- Heartburn / reflux.
- Heart disease.
- High cholesterol.
- Polycystic ovaries.
- Type II diabetes.
Medical science has in recent years seen some substantial advancements in the understanding of what causes obesity, which has led to new and better treatments.
Whereas previously it was often regarded as a form of 'lifestyle choice', it is now recognised as a serious medical condition caused in part by an individual's genetic makeup predisposing them to obesity, and not easily countered simply by willpower and changes in diet or lifestyle.
The role of surgery in weight loss
There are now a wide range of different surgical options to help with weight loss, all of which are very effective. Different types of surgery suit different people and it is advisable to talk with a specialist weight loss surgeon (a bariatric surgeon) to decide which option would best suit your specific circumstances.
Weight loss surgery, however, is most effective when combined with support from a multi-disciplinary team of psychologists and dietitians before and after surgery, where you are able to prepare for and maintain necessary changes to diet and lifestyle to ensure the best result.
Core Specialist Group has developed a specialist, multi-disciplinary approach, called the Peak Specialist Surgical Weight Loss Program.