What is obesity? This is a term that is not commonly used in our social circle. We consider its use is restricted to medical personnel. Many people among us have not even heard about this term. On the other hand, overweight is a commonly practiced term. People especially young girls, can say, exploit this word.
We hear this word on and off at different events where people talk about their diet regimens and gym routine. Models and young girls keep on talking about how they are afraid of getting overweight. Many clinics and herbal tea brands claim how they can help you to maintain your weight.
So, in raw words, overweight means gain in weight more than the desired limit. And, by obese, we mean, an advanced form of overweight. These definitions will give us a rough idea of the difference between overweight and obesity. To understand the complete difference between overweight and obesity, we need to look deep into these terms.
So, today we are going to talk about overweight and obesity. How, they both are related? What is the major difference between these two terms? Why do we need to have a keen knowledge of both terms? Do overweight and obesity have some health hazards? How this knowledge can help us in maintaining weight to the desired limit? What is the conclusion of all that discussion? Let’s find out the answer to all these questions.
What is Obesity?
So, what is obesity? How to know if a person is obese or not? Well, it depends upon a person’s body mass index.
What do you mean by term overweight?
So, what do we mean by overweight? How to know if a person is overweight or not? Well, it depends upon a person’s body mass index.
What is the body mass index?
As both overweight and obesity can be estimated from body mass index, we need to know about body mass index first. Now, what is the body mass index?
Body mass index or BMI is a specific number or value which explains that what should be a person’s ideal fat content in the body according to his/her body weight and height.
How obesity and being overweight is related to body mass index?
Now, how obesity and being overweight is related to body mass index? Let’s understand it with an example. For example, if we are given a group of individuals and we have to decide which individuals are underweight, which are overweight and which individuals come under the category of obese then body mass index is the key. (1) Based on body mass index, we can divide people into underweight, desired weight, overweight, obese and extreme/ morbid obese.
Calculation of body mass index
Now, how we can calculate body mass index? Well, a calculation is easy. Two formulas are used.
1. Basic formula
There is a specific formula by which we can calculate the body mass index provided the weight and height of a person are given.
Body mass index = Weight of a person in kilograms/height in meter square
2. Modified formula
If you have measurements like weight given in pounds and height in inches, then we can calculate body mass index by modifying formula.
A modified formula is:
Body mass index = Weight in pounds x 703 / Height in square inches
Significance of body mass index
Now, how body mass index is significant? Well, body mass index is an easy way to define in which category a person is lying according to his weight and height.
Classification according to body mass index
We can classify the following :
1. Underweight person
If a person’s body mass index is less than eighteen, it explains that a person’s body weight is less than the ideal weight for his/her height. This person will be labeled as underweight or malnourished. Hence, this person needs to increase his/her plate serving and eat a calorie-rich diet like bananas, shakes, cheese, and many others until he/she gains the desired body mass index. A healthy body mass index will lead to a wealthy life as said, health is wealth.
2. Ideal/healthy weight person
If a person’s body mass index is more than eighteen and less than twenty-five, it explains that a person’s body weight is the ideal weight for his/her height. This person will be labeled as having a standard or ideal body weight. Hence, this person needs to continue his/her regular diet and exercise to maintain his/her healthy weight.
3. Overweight person
If a person’s body mass index is more than twenty-five and less than thirty, it explains that a person’s body weight is more than the ideal weight for his/her height. This person will be labeled as overweight or having more weight than the ideal body weight. Hence, this person needs to modify his/her regular diet and exercise routine to achieve his/her healthy weight.
This person needs to reduce his/her plate serving and do regular exercise. This person meal should comprise a lot of salads, vegetables and calorie deficient meals which give him/her a sense of fullness and satisfy his/her satiety center. This person needs to cut carbohydrates and sugar from the diet. He/she should join a gym or do regular exercises that result in weight reduction. (5) This person can also follow different famous diets like the paleo diet, keto diet, vegan diet water diet and many others under the supervision of medical personnel.
4. Obese person
If a person’s body mass index is more than twenty-five and less than thirty, it explains that a person’s body weight has exceeded the category of overweight for his/her height. This person will be labeled as obese. Hence, this person needs to follow guidelines for an overweight person. As he/she has exceeded the limit for overweight, he/she should follow them strictly and besides, an extra effort is required to reach the desired weight.
Hence, this person needs to modify his/her regular diet and exercise routine to achieve his/her healthy weight. This person needs to reduce his/her plate serving and do regular exercise. This person meal should comprise a lot of salads, vegetables and calorie deficient meals which give him/her a sense of fullness and satisfy his/her satiety center.
He/she should join a gym or do regular exercises that result in weight reduction. This person can follow different famous diets like the paleo diet, keto diet, vegan diet, water diet and many others under the supervision of medical personnel.
5. Extreme/Morbid obese person
If a person’s body mass index is more than forty, it explains that a person’s body weight has exceeded the category of obese for his/her height. This person will be labeled as extremely obese or morbidly obese. Most of the time, morbid or extreme obesity is associated with various health conditions like hypertension, raised cholesterol levels, high blood sugar, stroke, cardiac issues, osteoarthritis, and many others. As he/she has exceeded the limit for overweight and obese, he/she is at risk of many diseases.
This type of obesity has a link with genetics but the main cause is abundant food supplies and a sedentary lifestyle. It is sometimes associated with eating disorders and abnormal food patterns. Extreme or morbid obesity needs immediate attention. A person needs to reduce his/her diet, follow a strict diet regimen. He/she needs to join the gym, do multiple exercises, yoga and aerobics. Surgeries like liposuction are among the last options but are opted nowadays if benefits outweigh the potential risks of anesthesia and surgical procedures.
How obesity is different from being overweight?
Well, what we have realized that obesity is not drastically different from being overweight. Obesity is a severe form of overweight. A person can be obese or he/she can be extremely obese. Both types of obesity are dangerous but morbid/extreme obesity is dreadful. Once a person is overweight, he/she is at risk of getting obese.
Why it is important to know you are overweight?
It is important to calculate your body mass index and assess whether you lie in an overweight category, so you can take further measures to reduce weight.
Side effects of being overweight
There are many side effects of being overweight. Being an overweight person, not only decrease your beauty and physical attraction, it comes with a lot of health hazards too. (3)
Increase in mortality rate
Research has found out that there is an increased mortality rate in overweight individuals as compared to healthy individuals. Overweight people are more prone to disease and once diseased, there is a poor outcome.
Raised blood pressure
Overweight individuals are at risk of raised blood pressure as compared to healthy individuals. Due to increased fat content in the body, fat is deposited in blood vessels thus blood has to work against more pressure to supply blood. Hence, a person becomes hypertensive.
High cholesterol levels
Overweight individuals are at risk of increased levels of bad cholesterol which is LDL in the body as compared to healthy individuals
Cardiac issues are more common in overweight people as compared to healthy people. Angina and myocardial infarctions are more common in overweight people.
Dyslipidemia is a condition in which triglycerides concentration is increased in the blood. Primary dyslipidemia is due to genetic defects. Secondary dyslipidemia is acquired. Secondary dyslipidemia’s most common cause is increased fat content in the body which is in overweight individuals.
Why it is important to know you are obese?
Now, why It is important to calculate your body mass index and assess whether you lie in the obese category or not? It is necessary, so you can take further measures to reduce weight.
Side effects of being obese
Being obese not only deteriorate your physical appearance, but it also comes with a lot of health hazards. In addition to raised blood pressure, an increase in mortality rate in obese individuals, there are also high levels of cholesterol in the blood. Cardiac issues are also present. Secondary dyslipidemia is also commonly observed in obese individuals. Though, these health hazards are also seen in overweight individuals. Additional side effects of obesity in individuals are:
Stroke is common in obese individuals as compared to healthy individuals.
Cholelithiasis is a condition in which stones are present in the gall bladder. Due to raised levels of cholesterol in the bile of obese individuals especially females, cholesterol stones are formed in the gall bladder. These stones cause discomfort and pain. Symptoms are chronic, ultimately leading to the removal of the gall bladder. Thus, obesity can lead to surgery of gall bladder, so beware when taking more than required calories.
Osteoarthritis is a common condition occurring in old age groups especially women. Obese individuals are at great risk of osteoarthritis because their bones and joints have to work continuously against the load. They have to bear increased weight daily. Thus, obesity puts you at greater risk of developing osteoarthritis.
There are two types of diabetes in which blood sugar is raised. One is diabetes mellitus type one which is due to the destruction of pancreatic cells. It occurs in young individuals. The second one is diabetes Mellitus type two, which occurs in obese individuals in the middle and old age group. Researches have shown that, in obese individuals, insulin resistance has developed due to increased fat content. (2)
How to stop being obese and overweight and maintain a healthy weight?
Well, now we have realized the consequences of being overweight and obese. Both are forms of increased weight. Though, being obese is more dangerous and associated with serious health hazards.
N ow, the question is what to do when you know you are overweight? Or you have gained more weight and reached the dangerous level of obesity? Or your case is more complicated and you are morbid/extremely obese.
The answer to all of this is you need to take serious action to reduce your weight and gain an ideal body mass index. To reduce your weight you need to reduce your diet. (4) By reducing your diet, one needs to understand that it’s not about starving and becoming malnourished. It’s all about a balanced diet.
First, you need to reduce your plate serving size, then you have to decide the contents of that plate too. You can’t keep on taking fast food, cheese, burgers, sugar and expect your weight to a dropdown. You need to cut off carbohydrates and take more proteins in a meal. Your diet should comprise vegetables, fruits, beans, and lean meat.
Well, only diet reduction is not sufficient. One needs to contact a fitness instructor and do regular exercises according to his instructions. An overweight or obese person needs to leave a sedentary lifestyle and become physically active. Aerobics, yoga, jogging, swimming can be done in addition to other exercises.
The Bottom line
After all this discussion, we have concluded that overweight and obesity are related to each other. Though, obesity is a more severe form of overweight. One needs to assess his/her body mass index, then he/she should be aware of his/her current health status that whether that person lies in the overweight category or obese category. After categorization, that person should take strict measures to reduce his/her weight so he/she can live a healthy and prosperous life. A healthy life is way more important than a wealthy life.