Overweight and obesity are standard medical terms used to assess a person’s risk of disease based on their height and weight. Today 130 million Americans, more than two-thirds of the adult population, are overweight, and another 60 million people are considered obese. The prevalence of overweight and obesity has steadily increased over the years among both genders, all ages, all racial/ethnic groups, all educational levels, and all smoking levels.
Obesity results from the excess accumulation of fat on the body. This excess fat can lead to a host of medical problems including:
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol
- Sleep Apnea
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) use a formula called Body Mass Index or BMI to determine the degree of overweight or obesity in a person. It is a measure of a person’s weight in relation to their height. BMI is the recommended approach for assessing body fat in the clinical setting. To determine your BMI follow these steps:
- Multiply your weight (in pounds) by 705
- Multiply your height (in inches) by your height (in inches)
- Divide the answer in step 1 by the answer in step 2 to get your BMI
Example: If you weigh 225 pounds
225 x 705 = 158,625
Example: If you are 5’5” (65")
65 x 65 = 4225
BMI = 37.5
Click here to go to a website that will calculate your BMI.
BMI is one tool that your medical provider can use to determine your risk of disease. Take a look at the BMI table to help you determine if you are normal weight, overweight or obese.
Normal weight 18.5-24.9
Obesity: Class 1 30.0-34.9
Obesity: Class 2 35.0-39.9
Extreme Obesity Greater than or equal to 40