What are the causes and symptoms of gaining weight?

A healthy body is said to be one of the basic requirements of a person according to Maslow’s Pyramid of needs in order for him or her to lead a content life. But with recent changes in lifestyle and habits, the problems of obesity and inappropriate BMI are doing outrageous rounds on the list of health problems most bothering people today.


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Obesity is defined as a health condition in which the affected person exhibits more than excess body fat and a dangerously large Body Mass Index.

Not all cases of weight gain can be said to be verging on obesity. Weight gain can even be healthy depending on a person’s diet regimen and workout routine. What can be called a healthy BMI also varies according to a person’s body type.

Weight gain: Causes

Multiple factors can affect and assist in weight gain. They may be genetic, habitual or arising from certain bodily conditions.

Genetic causes

Sometimes genetic factors play an important role in a person’s gain of weight. If the parents are obese or multiple cases of abnormal weight gains run in the family history, chances are that the person will be born with an abnormal body weight at the time of birth or will gain weight during his or her growth years gradually. This fat deposit called baby fat sometimes is very stubborn and is not easily got rid of.

Physical and habitual causes

Lifestyle and routine play a vital part in deciding the course of weight gain in a person. If a person’s routine is marked by long periods of prolonged inactivity, wrong, unhealthy eating habits, and lack of physical activity, the body is more likely to gain unhealthy weight.

In cases where weight gain is not genetic, this is the most prominent factor acting towards fat accumulation in the body. It has often been observed that a correlation exists between these habits and obesity. People involved in desk jobs which need them to spend long inactive hours at the same place, sitting in the same position are seen to have a tendency to indulge in the wrong choice of food and snacks. Overeating those over long periods of time can lead to increase in the cholesterol, blood sugar and fat levels and in turn lead to weight gain.

Other bodily conditions

A person can also gain weight if suffering from prone to obesity bodily conditions. People having diabetes often exhibit a steep graph of weight gain and it is one of the primary symptoms of the disease. Similarly, women might gain weight during pregnancy. People enduring diseases associated with lowered metabolism can also exhibit an unnatural gain in body mass. Body metabolism is also slowed down with age and it can lead to weight gain in the elderly.

Symptoms of weight gain

Increased appearance of body mass

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The changes in the body after weight gain are often visible and can be measured substantially.

Unwillingness to work

If the weight gain is alarmingly large, the person might suffer from a decreased will to work and might exhibit lethargic tendencies.

Heavy breathing and difficulty in performing physical activities

This happens in cases of obesity. An obese person will encounter difficulty in breathing and especially so when involved in some physical work.


Unhealthy eating and increased body weight tend to make a person drowsy and lazy.

Proclivity to binge eat

Many eating disorders accompany abnormal weight gain like an alarmingly increased appetite.