What is Obesity?
Obesity is typically defined as having a BMI or Body Mass Index of either 30 or more. BMI score is calculated by dividing a person’s weight in Kg by the square of height in meters. However, there are also some limitations associated with BMI.
Experts say that factors like an individual’s sex, age, ethnicity, and muscle mass can also have an influence on the relationship between body fat and BMI. In addition to that, BMI also does not distinguish between muscle, excess fat, and bone mass and also does not give information regarding the distribution of fat in an individual. Despite all these red flags, it is still very commonly used as an indicator of excess weight. Also, the types of obesity depend on where the BMI lies.
As mentioned above, the most common obesity Symptom is when your BMI is 30 or more. We have also understood how BMI is calculated for an individual. There are many charts available on the internet but you can also do simple calculations on your own. However, let us understand this a little more in details and educate ourselves:
- When the BMI is below 18.5 an individual is underweight
- When the BMI is between 18.5-24.9 the individual has normal weight
- When the BMI is between 24.5-29.9 then the individual is overweight
- When the BMI is 30.0 and higher the individual is obese.
Apart from that the most obvious obesity Signs and Symptoms are when an individual starts panting after walking just a few steps or climbing a few flights of stairs or doing any physical movement and has to stop and catch a breath.
Who is at Risk?
Any individual may be prone to obesity Risk Factors depending on different factors. We have discussed some common ones below for your reference and understanding of your body.
- Genetics – some people have certain genes which makes it increasingly difficult for them to lose weight.
- Psychological Factors – factors such as stress, depression, and anxiety have also been known to contribute to weight gain as a person facing these usually turn to food for emotional comfort
- Environment and Community – the environment at your home, school, office, and in your community has a big role to play in the kind of food you eat and how active you are. Smoking too much is also said to contribute to this.
- Certain Medications – medicines like certain antidepressants, birth control pills, and steroids are also known to contribute to weight gain.
Understanding the Causes of obesity is important in order for you to understand if you need to find a suitable obesity cure or not. We have mentioned common ones for you:
- Having a diet that is high in fats and calories and burning fewer calories in a day than you consume. This Causes all the extra calories to add up as excess weight in the long run.
- Not including any sort of movement in your daily life and staying sedentary or inactive for the most part of your day
- Getting inadequate sleep which is linked to cravings for higher calorie food and hormonal changes which Causes you to feel more hungry than usual
- Genetic factors influence how fat is stored in your body and how your body ultimately processes food into energy.
- Medical conditions like PCOS, Cushing syndrome, and osteoarthritis also contribute to weight gain.
How Is Obesity Diagnosed?
For obesity, Diagnosis is best to consult a doctor if you are facing some of the Symptoms that we have mentioned above. Below we have mentioned how the process of Diagnosing this looks like:
- As already mentioned above, one of the most common and widely used ways of Diagnosing this problem is to look at the relationship between an individual’s height and weight and then arrive at the Body Mass Index of that person.
- Skinfold thickness is a method used to measure the body fat of an individual and the body fat distribution.
- Waist to hip comparisons is also done to determine which area has the most amount of fat percentage present. An understanding of the amount of fat that is present around your waist and hip area is a good way to predict for any Diseases related to obesity.
- There is a couple of obesity test like an ultrasound, a magnetic resonance imaging also commonly known as MRI and a computed tomography (CT) scan that the doctor might prescribe you to do in order to understand your body better.
- The doctor might even as you to get a couple of other tests done to determine obesity and health risks related to obesity. These tests generally include liver function tests, blood tests to examine glucose level and cholesterol, thyroid tests, diabetes screen, and certain heart tests like an electrocardiogram.
These are some of the most common and known ways to Diagnose this Disease which is also practiced and followed by the best obesity doctor and even a general doctor or physician who Treats obesity as well. However, despite the Diagnosis seeming very easy it is always best to consult a good doctor and not go for self-Diagnosis at any point or start taking any medicines on your own.
How is Obesity Treated?
Obesity Treatment is certain to mix of things that an individual needs to do on their own and certain things for which medical help might be required:
- The first and foremost thing to do is to change your diet and lifestyle and starting eating healthily and include exercise in your daily routine.
- If you are unable to lose weight on your own by diet and lifestyle changes, then a bariatric physician is someone you can consider. They specialize in helping individuals lose weight without the need for any surgery.
- Your doctor can help you get in touch with a team of a dietician, personal exercise trainers, and healthcare staff who will get you on track for a healthy lifestyle. There is certain obesity medicine also that can help.
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How can Obesity be Prevented?
There are some very basic things that you can incorporate in your daily life in order to prevent obesity:
- Make good lifestyle choices by including a form of exercise that you enjoy in your daily routine. It can be swimming, biking, or even dancing. Select it and do it for at least 30 minutes daily.
- Have a healthy diet in place which includes a mix of protein, carbs, fiber, and other important nutrients. This is possible when you eat a mix of vegetables, fruits, lean protein, and whole grains.
- Mental health also plays an important role in this so make sure to include practices like meditation and getting adequate sleep every day.