As you age, you become more at-risk for certain medical conditions. For many of these conditions, your risk is further increased if you carry around some extra weight. Those who are extremely obese qualify for surgical weight loss procedures that can help them limit their risk of these age-and-obesity-related conditions, but those who are only slightly obese are usually told that they must achieve their weight loss through diet and exercise alone. Until now. Read on to learn all about the new dual-balloon weight loss procedure and find out what age-related conditions it can help you stave off as you age.
Approved by the FDA in 2015, the procedure entails your doctor using an endoscope to place two linked-together balloons into your stomach. The balloons are then filled up with a sterile solution and left to occupy some of the space in your stomach. Following the procedure, you'll naturally eat less food because the balloons will create the sensation of being full. The procedure takes less than 30 minutes, and the device can be left in place for up to 6 months, allowing an average weight loss of 6.8 percent body weight. The dual-balloon weight loss procedure is recommended for adults with a body mass index of 30 to 40.
What age-related conditions can the dual-balloon weight loss system help protect you from?
Age-related macular degeneration is a disease that attacks the central vision systems of the eyes, leading to vision loss and eventually blindness. There are 200,000 new cases of this condition diagnosed per year, and your chance of developing it increases as you get older.
Age isn't the only thing that boosts your risks of developing macular degeneration, however; obesity may also play a role. Researchers believe that fat cells in the body compete with the eyes for nutrients, leading those with excess body fat to have poor macular health and an increased risk of developing age-related macular degeneration. By losing weight with a dual-balloon weight loss procedure, you can lower your risk of developing the eye condition and halt its progress if you already have it.
Age-related hearing loss is a progressive condition in which nerve cells in the cochlea become damaged or non-functioning. What causes the condition? Researchers believe it has a lot to do with blood circulation. The inner workings of your ears rely on circulating blood to deliver oxygen to them and carry away free radical cells. Certain factors, obesity included, interfere with proper blood circulation to the ears, thus depriving them of oxygen and letting toxic free radicals build up. As a result, nerve cells in the ear are damaged and hearing is diminished.
By going through with a minimally-invasive dual-balloon weight loss procedure, you can help promote better blood circulation in your ears and lower your risk of developing age-related hearing loss.
Alzheimer's disease is a form of dementia in which the sufferer gradually succumbs to a loss of memory and a loss of thinking and reasoning skills. It is estimated that 5 million Americans have this condition, and damage to the brain may begin more than 10 years before initial symptoms are recognized.
Your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease increases with age, but it also increases with your body mass index. One study of individuals in their 70s found that those who were overweight had 4 percent less brain tissue than people of average weight, and those who were obese had 8 percent less. Where was tissue loss noted? It was noted in the same areas of the brain that Alzheimer's disease targets. In conclusion, obesity can weaken portions of your brain making them more susceptible to developing Alzheimer's disease. By having a dual-balloon weight loss procedure done, you can lower your BMI and lower your risk of developing this disease and other forms of dementia.
As you age, your risk of developing eye disease, hearing loss, and Alzheimer's disease increases. But all of these conditions have also been linked to obesity. If you fall under the category of obese yet aren't obese enough to be eligible for a surgical weight loss procedure, ask your doctor for more information on dual-balloon weight loss procedures and how they can lower your risk of certain age-and-obesity-related diseases.