Are You Overweight Or Obese?

    A close-up of a woman weighing herself What is the difference between overweight and being obese? Are you a little over your healthy weight or are fast-approaching obesity?

    Doctors usually define “overweight” as a condition in which a person’s weight is 10%-20% higher than “normal,” as defined by a standard height/weight chart, or as a body mass index (BMI) of 25 to 30.

    Obesity is usually defined as a condition in which a person’s weight is 20% or more above normal weight or as a BMI of 30 or more. “Morbid obesity” means a person is either 50%-100% over normal weight, more than 100 pounds over normal weight, or sufficiently overweight to severely interfere with health or normal functioning.

    Approximately 60 million Americans, nearly one-third of all adults and about one in five children, are obese. In 2008, only one state — Colorado — had an obesity rate less than 20%.

    What Do Overweight & Obesity Mean?

    Overweight and obesity are words used to describe a person’s weight that is greater than what is generally considered healthy for a given height. The terms also identify ranges of weight that can increase the likelihood of certain diseases and other health problems. Obesity impacts how you live and how you feel, both emotionally and physically. Obesity can affect your emotional health by lowering your self-esteem (you just don’t feel good about yourself), causing depression, making you feel uncomfortable in social situations, and significantly lowering your overall quality of life.

    Obesity is now considered the number one health risk facing America. Obesity results in an estimated 400,000 deaths per year in the United States, and it costs the national economy nearly $122.9 billion dollars each year. It can increase your risk for developing many serious medical conditions and diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, metabolic syndrome, polyscystic ovary syndrome, and many other ailments.

    What Makes You Overweight Or Obese?

    Many things play a part in affecting your weight. However, the basic cause comes from an energy imbalance: you are eating too many calories and not burning enough calories during your day. Managing your weight is all about balance – calories count! To avoid becoming overweight or obese, you want to try to balance the number of calories you eat with the number of calories your body “burns off” each day. And, remember, a calorie is a calorie no matter where it came from: carbohydrates, fats, sugars, and proteins all contain calories.

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