The Center for Disease Control (CDC) defines obesity as “Having a very high amount of body fat in relation to lean body mass or a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 or higher”.

BMI is calculated as

Body Mass Index (BMI) = weight(kg)/height (m2)

Classifications Of Obestiy

Classification BMI
Underweight  <19
Ideal BMI 19-25
Overweight 25-30
Obese >30
Severely Obese >35
Morbidly Obese >40
Super Obese >50

Obesity has become a world-wide epidemic estimated to affect 1.7 billion individuals. Childhood obesity is also growing at alarming rates with one in every five children in the U.S. being either obese or overweight. It is estimated that 80% of obese children will go on to become obese adults.

Each year, an estimated 365,000 adults in the U.S. die of obesity related causes. At a BMI of greater than 30, individuals are at increased risk of premature death and development of serious obesity related diseases. Obesity is a risk factor for life-threatening diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea and certain cancers.

Other medical conditions associated with obesity include:

  • Asthma
  • Cancer (Breast, colorectal, prostate and endometrial)
  • Depresssion
  • Thromboembolism
  • Gallstones
  • Gastroesphageal reflux
  • Heart Disease
  • Hypertension
  • Immobility
  • Incontinence
  • Infertility
  • Lipid disorders
  • Low back pain
  • NASH (Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis)
  • Obstetric complications
  • Obstructive Sleep Apnea
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Skin infections
  • Urinary Incontinence
  • Venous stasis

Obesity is also linked with reduced quality of life, social discrimination, disability and increased medical costs. It is estimated that in the U.S., the annual health expenditures associated with obesity is $147 Billion per year (21% of U.S healthcare costs).