Obesity is one of the biggest health problems in the world. It travels with various other diseases, which combined kill millions of people per year. These diseases include diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, stroke, dementia and various others.
If you are obese or overweight, you have an increased risk of developing various health problems. Even slightest decrease on the scale can help reduce the risks. A change of lifestyle is needed in order to lose weight and keep the weight off. This includes eating a healthy food and doing some regular exercises.
Are you obese or overweight?
Being obese or overweight means that your body carries excess fat and it is not only about how you look. Excess fats means that you expose your body to various health problems. You can find out whether you are obese or overweight by calculating your BMI (Body Mass Index) and waist size.
Body Mass Index (BMI)
We were born with different heights and builds, so just by stepping on the scale cannot be used to decide whether your weight is healthy. BMI is a measure of your weight related to your height.
To calculate your BMI, you divide your weight (in kilograms) by the square of your height (in metres). So, for example, if you weigh 70 kg and are 1.75 metres tall, your BMI is 70/(1.75 x 1.75), which is 22.9.
There are different categories of obesity as follows:
- Ideal (normal) BMI is 18.5 to 24.9 kg/m2.
- A BMI of 25-29.9 kg/m2 is overweight.
- A BMI of 30-34.9 kg/m2 is obese (Grade I).
- A BMI of 35-39.9 kg/m2 is obese (Grade II).
- A BMI of ≥40 kg/m2 is obese (Grade III) or morbidly obese.
However, BMI may be less accurate in very muscular people. This is due to muscle weigh heavier than fat. Someone who is very muscular may have a relatively high BMI due to the weight of their muscle but actually have a low and healthy amount of body fat. On the whole, BMI is a good estimate of how much of your body is made up of fat.
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