The more you spend time in the car, the less active you become. This is perhaps the most straightforward connection between obesity and long term engagement in professional driving.
Nowadays, many road accidents are caused by obesity. Most obese drivers are not capable of buckling up their seatbelts due to their size. According to statistics, failure to buckle up seatbelts can aggravate the health conditions of patients in case of accidents. In worst cases, it may cause death.
What is Obesity?
According to the World Health Organization, obesity is a condition mainly characterized by excessive levels of accumulated fats in the body which can impose harm and risks to human health. A body mass index (BMI) of 25 -29 is considered as overweight while 30 and beyond belong to the obese level.
When left unaddressed, obesity increases one's risk for other serious health conditions such as cartilage and bone degeneration (osteoarthritis), coronary heart disease, gall bladder disease, hypertension (high blood pressure). It also increases a person's risk for high cholesterol, respiratory disorders, cancer, sleep apnea, stroke and Type 2 diabetes.
Obesity can trigger certain physical problems including difficulties in running or walking, increased sweating, increased breathing, skin ailments like acne, gall stones, neck pain and backaches.
Why Obesity Develops?
In general, observing an unhealthy lifestyle may be considered as the prime factor which can contribute to the development of obesity. Unhealthy lifestyle includes excessive consumption of calories, sedentary lifestyle, lack of physical exercise and inadequate amount of sleep.
However, some cases of obesity are triggered by genetic factors and health conditions like hypothyroidism and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Also, intake of medications such as corticosteroids, oral contraceptives and antidepressants can cause weight gain.
What Makes Professional Drivers More Prone to Suffer from Obesity?
Compared to other working groups, professional drivers are observing a number of unhealthy and non-conducive lifestyles which contribute significantly in the occurrence of obesity.
Overconsumption of calories mostly happens in developed countries. However, there are working groups which consume higher than normal levels of calories. Instead of succumbing to a healthy diet composed of fruits and salads, many drivers tend to consume more of foods rich in fats and carbohydrates.
Also, there is a wide availability of foods rich in sugar, fats and carbohydrates in convenience stores. Over consumption of these types of foods is scientifically proven to be effective in increasing the level of fats in the body to an alarming level.
According to studies, living a sedentary lifestyle is one of the major contributors in the occurrence of obesity. Most professional drivers spend most of their driving. Though their working environment is mobile, drivers are maintaining a reclining or sitting position for a period of time which makes them susceptible to becoming obese.
Drivers lack physical activities which affect the level of calories burnt in the body. Instead of getting burnt, these calories tend to build up as fats. In effect, obesity is more likely to come. Some studies show that physical activities can affect the level of hormones in the body and how they digest food. Regular exercise actually helps in obtaining a healthy insulin level. Unstable level of insulin is associated with weight gain.
Even sleep deprivation can cause obesity. According to studies, sleep deprivation can actually trigger drastic hormonal changes which can increase one's appetite significantly. Lack of sleep stimulates the body to increase its production of Ghrelin, an appetite stimulating hormone, while reducing its leptin production, an appetite suppressant hormone.
What Can Drivers Do To Deal with Obesity Effectively?
Basically, the primary objectives of obesity treatments are to achieve and maintain a healthy weight level. Any reduction in weight level can help in dealing with obesity. Weight loss doesn't have to happen abruptly. It actually takes time and involves a number of lifestyle changes including increased physical activity and dietary changes.
Daily calorie intake should be reduced. This can be achieved through increased intake of whole grains, fruits and vegetables. On the other hand, intake of foods rich in sugar, fats and carbohydrates should be reduced.
Increased Physical Activity
Regular exercise is probably one of the most effective means of losing weight. The more you move your body, the more calories are burnt. A healthy diet with regular exercise will definitely make a great difference.
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