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How much does your obesity affect your mobility?

Health & FitnessHow much does your obesity affect your mobility?

Morbid obesity — having a body mass index of 40 or higher — can make it difficult to walk upstairs, bend over to tie your shoes or get up from a chair without help. A BMI in the morbid obesity range means that your weight is at least 100 lbs. higher than is healthy for you. The extra weight increases your risk of developing heart disease, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis and other conditions that can affect your ability to move about freely and live your life.

Whether obesity affects mobility is a question that can be best answered once you know what obesity and immobility really means. While there may be many people whose BMI or Body Mass Index is exceptionally high and beyond the optimal limit, these technically obese individuals may actually be far from immobile.

Many overweight people are quite fit as is evident if you consider the weights of boxers and wrestlers, shot putters and weight lifters. But this obesity does not affect their mobility; as a matter of fact, these sports persons are fitter and more agile than regular people.

What is immobility?

Immobility is any disability or disease that causes you to be confined to the bed or severely restricts your normal activities. Many obese people may not be able to perform weight bearing activities. This refers to those actions where your legs and feet have to take the whole body weight.

How obesity affects mobility:

Difficulty to move

When you are carrying excess weight, it is bound to affect your mobility. The extra weight will make movements really hard and uncomfortable. This is why most overweight individuals are seen to experience knee joint pains and back pains. These pains are the result of heightened pressure on the vertebrae and joints. Problems with mobility are more acute in obese people when they grow older.

Loss of muscle mass

Obese people suffer from loss of muscle mass. This may be a cause for much concern, and cases of very obese people needing hospitalization once in a while are not uncommon. Severely obese people suffer from offloading-atrophy which causes immobility. So, it is important to assess your muscle strength on a regular basis because this can be a strong indicator when it comes to predicting immobility.

Sedentary lifestyle

When a young person has excess fat and is moderately obese, there is no immediate danger of immobility but he needs to stay as physically active as possible. Those with a tendency to become overweight for genetic reasons, usually end up gaining weight faster. This is all the more true when they lead a sedentary lifestyle. Moderately obese people can try some proven weight loss programs to reach the less risky BMI reading. These individuals have to choose a program that offers weight loss at a steady pace. They also recommend a 30-minute workout everyday to complement your weight loss effort.

Social ostracism

When you are overweight, any kind of physical activity is harder to perform. The heart will have to work harder in order to pump blood for a large number of tissues. You will also need to put in more effort to move a heavy weight body. Obese people typically have higher amounts of body fat but less muscle mass and volume. The higher the amount of weight you put on your joints and ligaments especially when you grow older, the more are the chances of osteoarthritis. This condition causes your ankles and knees to wear out faster. Amongst the younger people, becoming obese may lead to numerous socio-psychological problems. Such overweight teens are usually stigmatized. They may find it embarrassing to go out in public or interact socially with their peers. They also tend to avoid physical exercises like dancing and swimming. This lack of physical activities that can keep you fit makes them even unhealthier and affects their mobility.

The lesser the body movements, the greater are the chances of gaining more weight; inactivity results in reduction of muscle mass. Morbidly obese people are therefore more prone to suffer from diabetes and heart problems, osteoarthritis and blood pressure fluctuations.


Obesity, functional mobility and quality of life
occurrence. If a patient with obesity is not able to move around at an intensity and frequency requiredto lose weight or prevent weight gain they are at greater risk of experiencing mobility disability andthose patients with impaired mobility will continue to experience restrictions in activities at home,work, school and in the community thereby having a negative impact on their health related quality oflife.

Obesity and mobility disability in the older adult
Mobility disability is becoming prevalent in the obese older population (> or = 60 years of age). We included a total of 13 cross-sectional and 15 longitudinal studies based on actual physical assessments of mobility in the obese older population in this review. We systematically examined existin …

The association of mobility disability and obesity with …
People with mobility disability (MD) or obesity often have more health problems and are less able to participate in work than individuals without these conditions.

Obesity and Mobility in Advancing Age: Mechanisms and …
Obesity exacerbates health complications and functional decline. Mobility is the ability to transfer body weight, climb stairs, walk independently and walk at moderate speeds. Better mobility reflects higher quality of life and longer survival [ 1, 2 ].

The effects of obesity and mobility disability in access …
Obesity and mobility limitation are independently associated with a lower likelihood of cervical and breast cancer screening. Protective outreach and follow-up are necessary to reduce inequalities and thus to reduce health disparities in these vulnerable and high-risk populations of obese women with disabilities.

Obesity Leads to Immobility Later in Life
Obesity and Mobility Being overweight affects mobility. Additional pounds can make movement difficult and uncomfortable. Obese people often have back and knee pain due to increased pressure on joints and vertebrae.

Disability and Obesity
Children and adults with mobility limitations and intellectual or learning disabilities are at greatest risk for obesity. 1, 2, 3 20% of children 10 through 17 years of age who have special health care needs are obese compared with 15% of children of the same ages without special health care needs. 6

Mobility & Morbid Obesity
Morbid obesity can affect every aspect of life, especially in terms of mobility. Even a low level of effort becomes difficult, so morbidly obese people tend to move less as time goes on. With less…

Mobility Problems in the Obese Population
Equally important among the life-changing effects of obesity is the steadily increasing loss of mobility as the overweight problem develops. As a result, loss of mobility is a major problem among obese people, but especially with the morbidly obese.


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