Do You Gain Weight Easily? Here’s How to Lose Those Pounds!

Some people tend to gain weight rapidly. If you're one of them, discover ways to shed those extra pounds here!

A woman covering half of her face with a weight scale.

Did you know that among all citizens in Southeast Asian countries, Malaysians are the ones whogain weight the most? The National Health and Morbidity Survey in 2019 revealed that one in two Malaysian adults is either overweight or obese. It is believed that the two major causes of this phenomenon are an imbalanced diet and a sedentary lifestyle, which has worsened with the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Weight gain can happen to anyone, regardless of their age and gender. However, some groups of people are more vulnerable because they are constantly exposed to poor diet plans or lifestyle choices.

Read on to know if you belong in any of the groups and discover ways to shed those extra pounds. 

Who is Most Likely to Gain Weight? 

These groups of individuals are known to be more susceptible to rapid weight gain: 

1. Children  

Two 2017 studies focusing on primary school-aged children in Malaysia reported that around 27% to 30% of the youngsters were overweight or obese. A 2021 study on 12-year-old students in Malaysia found that a high intake of milk and dairy products contributed to obesity rates. The finding suggests that parents may have difficulties maintaining a healthy household lifestyle because they give in to their children’s requests for snacks and unhealthy foods , causing the children to gain weight as well. 

The study also showed that adolescent obesity is related to birth weight. 

2. Housewives

A housewife in an apron sitting on a sofa surrounded by dirty laundry, looking tired
Housewives tend to gain weight rapidly.

The National Health and Morbidity Survey 2011 indicated that the mean Body Mass Index (BMI) among housewives in Malaysia was highest compared to other job categories. A 2016 study on homemakers in Klang Valley, Kuala Lumpur, observed that a lack of exercise is the major contributor. Other common reasons include having heavy meals at night, unhealthy cooking methods, stress and discontinued use of weight loss supplements or products.  

3. Working Women 

According to a 2012 study published in the International Journal of Obesity, women who work over 35 hours are more likely to experience weight gain. The researchers highlighted longer working hours as the main culprit, as the women have less time to maintain their health and fitness levels.

A 2019 study in Sweden, meanwhile, attributed the weight gain to heavy pressures at work. The study proposed that the stress and a combination between job demands and responsibility at home may make it difficult for women to live healthily.  

Busy career women have a high chance of eating late and forgoing proper nutritious meals in favour of quick and easy options that might not be the healthiest. Eating out often instead of preparing meals at home can also result in poor food choices. This can contribute to weight gain over a period of time.

4. Middle-Aged Men 

The levels of testosterone wane as men age. A low amount of testosterone has been associated with increased fat mass and reduced lean mass in men. Men also tend to drink more alcohol. Excessive alcohol has been linked to sleep disorders, which can increase the risk for obesity

How to Shed Weight Gain Healthily

A chiropractor treats a woman’s back as she lies on a procedure chair
Chiropractic might help control rapid weight gain.

Since the main causes of weight gain are an unhealthy diet and physical inactivity, eating well and exercising are the two most obvious ways to lose those extra pounds. Besides these two methods, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) also offers some holistic approaches to weight reduction. 

TCM believes that weight gain may be caused by two reasons. One is Spleen Qi Deficiency and Liver Qi Stagnation, which result in the formation of stagnant fluids, Dampness and phlegm in the body. The second is poor posture, which indicates a lack of core activation. When core muscles aren’t activated, there is less energy and fat burnt. 

TCM’s methods in shedding weight gain centre around eliminating the above two causes through: 

  • Cupping
  • Moxibustion
  • Tuina
  • Herbal formulas that strengthen Spleen Qi and Liver Qi, while also dispelling Dampness, stagnated fluids and phlegm. These formulas include Xiang Sha Liu Jun Zi (香砂六君子), Chai Hu Shu Gan San (柴胡疏肝散), Xing Sha Ping Wei San (香砂平胃散), Wu Ling San (五苓散), Ling Gui Zhu Gan Tang (苓桂术甘汤), Liu Mo Tang (六磨汤) and Jian Pi Wan (健脾丸). There are also herbal supplements that promote digestion.
  • Chiropractic, which can make the body feel more comfortable when exercising and correct the core muscle.
  • Acupuncture
  • Acupressure massage 

Acupoints to Reduce Weight Gain 

Applying pressure to certain acupoints can help with weight management. In a circular motion, massage these points in both clockwise and anticlockwise directions, then repeat for three minutes each.  

Distal acupoints (located away from the origin of the problem; in this case, the abdomen): 

  • He gu (LI4, 合谷)
  • Zu san li (ST36, 足三里)
  • Yin ling quan (SP9, 阴陵泉)
  • Feng long (ST40, 丰隆)
  • Tai chong (LV3, 太沖)

Localised acupoints:  

  • Zhong wan (RN12, 中脘):
  • Tian shu (ST25, 天枢)
  • Da heng (SP15, 大横)
  • Jing men (GB25, 京门)
  • Dai mai (GB26, 带脉)

Consulting a TCM physician prior to trying out any of the methods listed above is a must. Two persons with the same health condition might have different body constituents and need different herbal concoctions. Moreover, only professionals can perform acupuncture safely and effectively.  

Do you belong to one of the groups that can gain weight easily? Don’t let this distress you. Being overweight and obese is not inevitable. With determination, you can avoid gaining weight and live healthily. 

This is an adaptation of an article, “4 Major Groups of People Who are Prone to Gaining Weight”, which first appeared on the Health123 website.

References

  1. New Straits Times. 2022. Fat, fatter and fattest [online]. Available at: <https://www.nst.com.my/lifestyle/heal/2022/05/794922/fat-fatter-and-fattest> [Accessed 1 July 2022] 
  2. BMC Paediatrics. 2021. Obesity determinants among Malaysian 12-year old school adolescents: findings from the HAT study [online]. Available at: <https://bmcpediatr.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12887-021-02899-3> [Accessed 1 July 2022] 
  3. Journal of Womens Health, Issues and Care. 2016. Perspective on Obesity Problems and Associated Factors to Reduce Weight among Overweight and Obese Housewives: A Qualitative Study [online]. Available at: <https://www.scitechnol.com/peer-review/perspective-on-obesity-problems-and-associated-factors-to-reduce-weightamong-overweight-and-obese-housewives-a-qualitative-study-SPzt.php> [Accessed 1 July 2022] 
  4. Monash University. 2012. Working women more likely to gain weight [online]. Available at: <https://www.monash.edu/news/articles/working-women-more-likely-to-gain-weight> [Accessed 2 July 2022] 
  5. Science Daily. 2019. Women gain weight when job demands are high [online]. Available at: <https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/01/190125172950.htm> [Accessed 2 July 2022] 
  6. Pubmed. 2015. Testosterone and obesity [online]. Available at: <https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25982085/> [Accessed 2 July 2022] 

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