GANJ Looks Towards National Obesity Awareness Week

We are not yet two full weeks into the new year and a very special awareness week is upon us. In fact, it’s fitting that National Obesity Awareness Week falls so early in the year, as it allows us to take some time and educate the community on the health dangers of obesity. In turn, combined with our year-long efforts on other subjects, we can hold our heads high that we will make a difference in one’s life. We will spend much of the week focusing on obesity awareness with tips, infographics, and videos populating our various social media channels. Sign up for our newsletter as well to be the first to know everything and everything related to GANJ and industry news.

Whether it’s cooking healthier options, exercising, or avoiding late night snacks, there are many ways one can get in control of their weight.  Obesity is costly, serious, and deadly. Obesity related diseases range from heart disease and stroke to diabetes and cancer. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website, the estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the United States was $147 billion in 2008. By 2015-2016 the prevalence of obesity was 39.9% of the United States population, affecting 93.3 million adults. Interestingly, obesity affects some groups more than others. According to the CDC website, Hispanics and non-Hispanic blacks had the highest adjusted prevalence of obesity at 37.9% and 12.7% respectfully. Even scarier, young adults aged 20-39 years of age see a prevalence of obesity at 35.7%, with 42.8% amount middle aged adults 40-59 years. Lastly, 41.0% of those aged 60 or older are affected by obesity.

Which GI Conditions are Triggered by Obesity?

Obesity has certainly played a role in many diseases of the digestive tract. Mild disturbances such as IBS and even life-threatening cancers such of the colon and stomach can be traced back to lifestyle and obesity. What researchers have found over the past few years, highlighted in a CBS article written in February 2015 ( is that many food additives are linked to obesity and digestive problems. These chemicals found in our favorite foods may be altering our gut bacteria, or microbiome, potentially causing inflammation that leads to weight gain. Inflammation of the intestines can be mild or could potentially turn into a painful disease called Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) that the physicians at GANJ treat daily. The answer to this problem? Not so simple. Unfortunately, many commercial foods contain these dangerous chemicals. It’s often thought that if you can, stick to fresh whole foods from health food stores as opposed to commercial products found in many chain grocery stores.

A Look Toward an Obese-Free Future

We truly believe education is key. Individuals who fall into lifestyle habits such as smoking, consuming alcohol, and eating poor diets often lack the education surrounding each action. Promoting weight loss through exercise, better nutrition and even innovative weight loss procedures such as the Orbera Balloon performed here at GANJ is the way of the future.

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