What is overweight and obesity?
Overweight and obese are terms used to describe the body weight of people who are carrying excess body fat. To determine whether someone is overweight or obese, their body mass index (BMI) is calculated using their height and weight.
Becoming overweight or obese happens gradually as a result of either;
- consuming more energy (kilojoules from food and drinks) than your body needs;
- consuming more energy (kilojoules from food and drinks) than your body uses by being active;
- a combination of both.
Overweight and obesity is harmful to health as it increases a person's risk of developing chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers. It also increases their risk of developing other health issues, including high blood pressure, gall bladder disease, fertility problems, lower back pain and sleep apnoea.
The more excess weight a person is carrying, the higher their risk of health issues.
Want to find out if you are in the healthy weight range? Learn more at www.livelighter.com.au/bmi.
What is cancer?
Cancer is a disease of the body's cells. The body is constantly making new cells to replace worn-out ones, to grow, or to heal itself after an injury.
Normally cells grow and reproduce themselves in an orderly way. Sometimes, cells can reproduce themselves in an uncontrolled way, which can lead to cancer. These cancer cells can form a tumour, damage the surrounding area and spread to other areas of the body.
It is important to understand that cancer is not a single disease with a single cause, effect or treatment.
Cancer is a leading cause of death in Australia, accounting for 3 in every 10 deaths. In 2011, more than 43,200 Australians died of cancer – that's more than 830 people every week.
What causes cancer?
In many cases the cause of a cancer is unknown. However, there are many things that can increase your risk of developing cancer. Some of these we can't change, like our genes, or our age.
Some things that increase our risk of developing cancer, we can change. These include:
- Drinking alcohol
- UV radiation (sun exposure)
- Physical inactivity
- Being overweight or obese