Obese people are in a state of pain, new research shows. In a report published in the journal Obesity, results from a survey of more than 1 million American adults reveals that obese people are more likely to suffer from daily pain than people whom are not obese.
This discovery was made after Stony Brook University researchers Arthur Stone and Joan Broderick analyzed the results of a proprietary survey conducted by the Gallup Organization. The survey, which took place between 2008 through 2010, involved phone interviews of 1,062,271 randomly selected American adults.
Survey participants responded to questions about pain conditions they experienced during the previous year, as well as any pain they had felt the previous day. Interviewees also supplied information about their height and weight which analysts used to calculate respondents' body mass index (BMI).
The results of the survey revealed that obese people are more likely to experience daily pain than non-obese people. The pain is not gender specific, as researchers noted that obese men and women responded that they experienced pain. Moreover, the problem seems to worsen with age.
Based on their findings, Stone and Broderick said: "We conclude that BMI and daily pain are positively correlated in the United States: people who are obese are considerably more prone to daily pain."
The researchers also noted that increasing BMI-pain associations among older groups could be the result of a "developmental process" which warrants further investigation.
The Stony Brook researchers analysis says a lot about the state of American health. Two thirds of Americans are either overweight or obese. Last summer the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) released their annual report which said forty-nine states have obesity levels above twenty percent. In plain terms that means America is obese!
When you think about it, obesity is linked to pain. Apart from diseases which contribute to pain (which Stone and Broderick took into account when conducting their analysis), obesity itself will cause pain. Why? One word: inflammation.
Obese people are in a constant state of inflammation. Fat cells release chemicals that cause inflammation. Therefore the release of chemical messengers that trigger inflammation is going to cause sensations of pain and tenderness in affected areas.
The obesity-pain survey underscores the fact that it really isn't possible to be healthy and obese.
The only way to correct the problem is for government, and state agencies working with health care providers, and community organizations to educate the public about the dangers of obesity. In the end, though, it comes down to personal choice. If you're obese and living in pain, you have to make the decision to help yourself.
Are you up to it?
God, we need help. The devil is too powerful for us to fight on our own. Empower and strengthen us, please, so that we can do the work that You want us to do.
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Stone, A., & Broderick, J. (2012). Obesity and Pain Are Associated in the United States Obesity DOI: 10.1038/oby.2011.397
Stienstra, R., Duval, C., Müller, M., & Kersten, S. (2007). PPARs, Obesity, and Inflammation PPAR Research, 2007, 1-10 DOI: 10.1155/2007/95974
Study of One Million Americans Shows Obesity and Pain Linked. Stony Brook University Press Release.
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