Male obesity is part of the deadly diabesity epidemic that health officials are trying to address. Diabesity is a condition in which obesity and diabetes exist simultaneously, although the diabetes part of it can be in its infancy, just mild insulin resistance. (The diabetes part of diabesity is on a continuum, ranging from mild insulin resistance to full-blown diabetes.)
Doctors have known for decades that there is a link between obesity and type 2 diabetes, that obesity increases the risk of developing diabetes, but they didn’t know why. Research now shows that obesity causes insulin resistance, which is why an estimated 90% of those who are obese will develop type 2 diabetes at some point in their lives.
Diabesity increases the risk for many serious diseases — and the death toll is already staggering — which is why health officials are desperately trying to find a solution to this problem.
And now you’re worried about your husband. He has been struggling with his weight for a long time without success. He is not a nameless, faceless number. Your husband is not a male obesity statistic. He is the man you’ve loved for 5, 10, 20, 30 or more years. He is the father of your children, the man who vowed he’d be there for you and the kids (and grandkids) come what may.
And you want to help him lose weight so he will be there for the family. We can help you and your husband do that. But before outlining the plan that will help your husband easily shed those pounds, let’s discuss male obesity.
Male Obesity: Does Your Husband Fit the Mold?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 35% of U.S. men are obese. Statistics show that male obesity grew from 21.8% in 1997 to 35.5% in 2016, an average annual growth rate of 2.60% per year.
Is your husband one of them?
Doctors use body mass index (BMI) to determine obesity and to screen for health risks. BMI is based on the height and the weight of the individual. The BMI calculation is considered to be a close estimate of the level of body fat of an individual. Below is a BMI chart for the various weight groups.
- Underweight BMI of less than 18.5
- Healthy Weight BMI is 18.5 to 24.9
- Overweight BMI is 25 to 29.9
- Obese BMI is 30 or higher
There are also 3 classifications of obesity: severe, morbid, and super. Each of them has BMI ranges.
Obesity is a medical condition in which the amount of excess body fat has accumulated to such an extent that it could have a negative effect on health. One possible negative effect of obesity — and one that men are especially prone to — is the accumulation of abdominal fat. While women tend to gain fat in their breasts, thighs, and buttocks, men tend to gain it in their stomachs.
This causes visceral fat to accumulate deep within the abdominal cavity, surrounding the internal organs. This fat secretes chemicals that circulate through the liver, causing metabolic problems such as diabetes.
Causes of Male Obesity
The causes of male obesity are pretty much same for everyone. Here are some of the most common ones.
Many studies show obesity to be an inherited trait, which doesn’t condemn your husband to be obese for the rest of his life. It simply means if your husband has obese family members, he is at higher risk of being obese, too. However, science has also shown we are not a slave to our genes.
In the case of obesity, researchers believe genetics alone cannot account for the rapid increase in rates of obesity in the past few decades. Genes cannot change that quickly, so there must be environmental factors at play in obesity, researchers say.
And there is. It’s called the Standard American Diet.
The Standard American Diet
The standard American diet, consisting primarily of heavily processed foods, fast foods, processed carbs, and refined sugars, is a huge cause of male obesity, female obesity, childhood obesity — and many of the disease so many people are suffering from.
Heavily processed foods are manufactured concoctions made to taste like real food. They contain chemicals, emulsifiers, additives, and all kinds of other toxic substances that are not a part of regular cooking. The body does not know how to deal with these chemicals.
The hormones that are supposed to signal your husband’s brain when he’s full no longer do their job. Other hormones that are supposed to burn fat also don’t work. The standard American diet broke your husband’s metabolic system, dysregulated his hormones. Male obesity is the result for him and for hundreds of thousands of other men.
Like many people, more men are leading sedentary lifestyles these days. Unfortunately, inactivity has been linked to obesity and increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, and many other diseases.
Health Risks of Obesity
There are many health risks of obesity that affect both men and women. Some of these health risks include:
- Heart disease
- Type 2 Diabetes (Diabesity)
- Sleep Apnea
- Some Cancers
- Gallbladder Disease
- High Blood Pressure
- Kidney Stones (Male obesity significantly increases the risk of kidney stones.)
Health Risks of Male Obesity
There are additional risks of male obesity that affect only men. As his wife, you will be affected, too, if your husband develops any of these health problems. Here are some of these health risks.
Reduced Testosterone Levels
Testosterone is the primary male hormone responsible for the development of the male reproductive organs, sperm production, libido, and almost everything else that makes him a man. His levels of testosterone, however, are not steady throughout his life.
A rush of testosterone in puberty rocks his world for a few years, and then in his twenties, these levels reach their peak. At middle age, testosterone levels slowly start declining. It’s not a steep decline, just an average of 1% a year. Most older men have sufficient levels of testosterone. But anything that accelerates the decline — such as obesity, it turns out — can cause testosterone deficiency.
Many studies show a link between male obesity and reduced testosterone levels. One 2007 study of more than 1,500 men found that for every 1% increase in BMI, their testosterone levels decreased by 2%. Another study showed a correlation between increased waist circumference and lower testosterone levels.
Reduced testosterone levels impact many areas of a man’s life, and it probably increases the risk for some of the issues below.
Though it makes sense low testosterone levels would cause erectile dysfunction (ED), this is only true in about 3% of the cases of ED. But many studies show obesity increases the risk of ED. (This is true even when the men have normal testosterone levels.)
One California study found just being overweight, not obese, significantly increased a man’s chances of developing ED. Other studies show weight loss can improve erectile function. Experts are not sure of the exact reason obesity has such an effect on erectile function, but it is a factor in male obesity that needs to be addressed.
Low Sperm Count/Infertility
Studies have also found a link between obesity and low sperm count, even infertility. Most researchers believe this is caused by reduced testosterone levels.
Many studies show overweight and obesity increases the risk of prostate cancer. In fact, a study conducted by the American Cancer Society shows the risk of prostate cancer increases with increased body fat. Studies also show obesity increases the odds that cancer will spread beyond the prostate gland.
The SANE Cure for Male Obesity
There are a few ways you can help your husband permanently lose weight, and they’re all SANE. One thing that won’t help him is probably something that he’s tried time after time after time — cutting calories.
Why Calorie Counting Will Not Cure Male Obesity
For half a century, everybody has been following a bogus theory of weight loss presented as fact called the “calorie deficit.” This theory treats the body like a scale, calories in = calories out. The calorie-deficit theory of weight loss says to lose weight, you have to monitor your calorie intake and output, that your body is incapable of doing it for you. It also says you have to starve your body, that beautiful machine that needs nourishment to perform all its functions.
The calorie-deficit theory of weight loss is wrong. The body is not like a scale, it is like a thermostat, regulating your calorie input and output for you around your setpoint weight. If you eat too many calories, your body will simply burn more calories. If you eat too few calories, your body will burn fewer calories. That’s the way it was designed to work so that ideally you can never become too heavy or too thin.
But regularly eating inSANE foods broke the system, causing a hormonal clog. Your husband’s body didn’t know how much fat he had or needed to have, so it gave him more fat. This raised his setpoint weight. From that point on, his body always tried to go back to that weight, and it didn’t matter how little he ate or how much he exercised.
Setpoint Weight Always Wins
If your husband tries to cut calories, his body thinks he’s starving and will do whatever it can to save his life. It will activate hormones to make him hungry and cold and shaky. It will signal hormones to store fat and not to burn any of his fat stores. If he doesn’t start eating enough food within a few weeks, it will slow his metabolism.
When he finally goes off the diet and starts eating normally again, he gains the weight back, plus 10 pounds for added insurance against future insurance.
You and your husband can’t win against his body’s drive to keep him near his setpoint weight. The only thing that will ensure long-term weight loss is to work with the body, not against it. You can do this by helping your husband eat a SANE diet that has been scientifically proven to lower setpoint weight.
Once the setpoint weight is lowered, the body will do the job it was designed to do. If your husband eats too much one day, his body will burn more calories. It will regulate his weight for him like it’s supposed to do. No calorie or point counting. No hunger, and no hassles.
The SANE Diet for Male Obesity
The SANE Diet is a simple way to cure male obesity. It involves just 4 food groups, as follows:
At least 10 servings per day
Non-starchy veggies take up a lot of room in the stomach, making your husband feel full fast. Plus, because the body can’t digest fiber, it stays in the gastrointestinal tract for a long time, which keeps him full for a long time.
Need some veggie suggestions? Why not try some of these?
- Bok Choy
3-5 servings per day, 30-55 grams per meal
Nutrient-dense protein signal short- and long-term satiety hormones, meaning protein fills you up fast and keeps you full for hours. Increasing protein consumption also decreases sugar cravings.
Craving some nutrient-dense protein suggestions? How about these?
- Nonfat Greek Yogurt
- Grass-Fed Beef
- Egg Whites
- Cottage Cheese
3-6 servings per day
Whole-food fats are filling, also. Plus, when your husband replaces starchy carbs and sugars with whole-food fats, his body will start burning fat as its preferred fuel source. Soon, it will start burning his fat stores.
Need some whole-food fat ideas? Try burning through some of these!
- Flax seeds
- Chia Seeds
0-3 servings per day
Low-fructose fruits make tasty in-between meal snacks or after-dinner desserts.
Here are a few treats to get sweet on:
- Goji Berries
Try to make sure your husband has the first three food groups at each meal. The goal is for him to be so full of SANE foods, he doesn’t have room for inSANE ones. These foods will clear his hormonal clog, lower his setpoint weight, and help him permanently lose weight. Say goodbye to male obesity and hello to SANEity!
Next Step: End Male Obesity with SANE
Ready to finally break free from the yo-yo dieting rollercoaster by balancing your hormones and lowering your body’s setpoint weight?
Want to know the exact foods and serving sizes that are scientifically proven by over 1,300 peer-reviewed research studies to boost metabolism, burn fat and enjoy virtually effortless weight loss like a naturally thin person?
Download the free SANE metabolism boosting food list, cheat sheet and “Eat More, Burn More” weight loss program by .