Is Obesity Hereditary? Should Treatment Be Tailored?

Is Obesity Hereditary? Should Treatment Be Tailored?

Behaviour, environment, and genetic factors all play a key role in hereditary obesity.

Many people view obesity as a consequence of poor lifestyle choices and habits, and not as a disease. In fact, obesity is a complex and chronic disease that impacts 2 in 3 Australians. Classifying obesity as a disease can help shift stereotypes and negative attitudes towards the problem and help people who are experiencing excessive weight gain or obesity. By treating obesity as a disease, we can begin to break down barriers like societal stigma and shame which have long been obstacles to early prevention and treatment for people suffering.

Obesity is much more complex than caloric intake and energy balance, it’s based on the relationships and interactions of genetic, developmental, hormonal, environmental, and behavioural factors that influence obesity.

Genetic Obesity

Recent research has found that obesity can often be attributed to our genes. Increasingly, specialised genetic studies are helping medical professionals understand the relationship between how our genetics can regulate body fat. Genes provide the body with instructions on how to respond to changes in its environment. Certain genes can promote fat accumulation within a specific environment by increasing the desire to overeat or remain inactive, which can lead to a range of serious physical and mental health issues if unaddressed.

Common genetic causes that relate to obesity can be split into:

  • Monogenic causes – a single gene mutation
  • Syndromic obesity – severe obesity linked with neurological deficiencies or organ weaknesses
  • Polygenic obesity – the culmination of a gene pool responding to a challenging environment

Although recent studies have alluded to a link between genetics and obesity, the findings are still in an early stage and it’s clear that our genetics play only a part in whether we become overweight or obese.

Tailored Bariatric Care & Expertise

Dr Kevin Dolan has been the Director and Head of the Western Australia Laparoscopic and Obesity Surgery for over 15 years and has extensive knowledge in weight loss treatments such as gastric sleeve surgery and mini gastric bypass surgery.

Having performed over 15,000 successful weight loss surgeries, Dr Kevin Dolan provides a long-term commitment to achieving and sustaining weight loss with help from his team of bariatric physicians, dieticians, psychologist, exercise physiologists, nurse and patient support group.

We’re all different, and what works for one person isn’t necessarily the best option for another. The best way to find out which particular weight loss option may be best suited to you is to visit Dr Dolan for a one-on-one consultation. When it comes to choosing a weight loss procedure, there is no substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a bariatric specialist.

Dr Kevin Dolan will help you choose the best treatment option for your individual situation – Find out which procedure is best suited for you by booking an initial consultation with Dr Kevin Dolan.

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