1. What Exactly is Obesity?

    Obesity is defined clinically as a body mass index (BMI) greater than 30. BMI is a screening measure of body fat in adults 20 years and older. As BMI increases risks for certain diseases increase along with it. These diseases include coronary artery or heart disease, certain types of cancer, type 2 diabetes, increased blood pressure, hypercholesterolemia, sleep disorders, arthritis, depression, and anxiety. Approximately 63% of Americans are overweight and 33% are obese.

    It is usually the direct result of a sedentary lifestyle, chronic ingestion of excess calories, and genetic predisposition.

  2. What Causing High Body Mass Index (BMI)?

    It is usually the direct result of a sedentary lifestyle, chronic ingestion of excess calories, and genetic predisposition. Only 49% of Americans are active and adequate levels of physical activity are important for prevention of exstensive weight gain. Less than 1% of obese people have hormonal issues such as hypothyroidism or Cushing’s Syndrome. The rapid surge in the prevalence of this status has resulted in an increased prevalence of diabetes. Upper body obesity (abdomen and waist) is a greater health hazard than lower body (thighs and buttocks).
  3. Treatment Options and Solutions

    Like most medical conditions, treatment is multifactorial and begins with therapeutic lifestyle changes or lifestyle modification. These lifestyle changes include eating a healthy diet that is low in calories and increased physical activity. Behavioral modification is also important and includes meal planning and record keeping in the form of a diet log.

    Medications are recommended for people whose BMI is between 27 and 30 depending on the presence of obesity related risk factors that can be cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, or endocrine conditions.

    Overweight-related Risk Factors

    • Coronary artery disease

    • Type 2 diabetes

    • High blood pressure

    • High cholesterol

    • Severe sleep apnea

    • Severe arthritis

    • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

    • Gastroesophageal reflux disease

    • Hiatal hernia

    Weight loss surgery is recommended for people whose BMI is greater than 35 with overweight-related risk factors, or greater than 40 in the absence on these risk factors.

  4. Establishing Health and Wellness Goals
    Your healthcare provider should help you set health and wellness goalsThese should address treatment of any current health conditions and prevention of future ones. Examples of these goals include losing 10 percent of body weight, keeping blood pressure within acceptable limits, and maintaining blood sugar levels within acceptable limits. Once you have carefully identified your goals, the next step is formulating a plan to achieve them. Your plan will include the major steps that will be taken to accomplish the goal you have set. A thorough review of your health and wellness goals and plan should occur periodically to assess your progress and make adjustments as necessary.