Bariatric Surgery

What are overweight and obesity classifications?

Overweight and Obesity are classifications that can be defined as an abnormal or excessive accumulation of fat that can be detrimental to health.

The body mass index (BMI) is a simple indicator of the relationship between weight and height that is frequently used to identify overweight and obesity in adults. It is calculated by dividing the weight of a person in kilos by the square of its size in meters (kg / m2).

The definition from the World Health Organization (WHO) is as follows:

  • A BMI equal to or greater than 25 is deemed overweight.
  • A BMI equal to or greater than 30 signifies obesity.

The BMI provides the most useful measure of overweight and obesity in the population, since it is the same for both sexes and for adults of all ages. However, it should be considered as an indication because it may not correspond to the same thickness level in different people.

What causes overweight and obesity?

The fundamental cause of overweight and obesity is an energy imbalance between calories consumed and spent. In the world, there has been:

An increase in the intake of hypercaloric foods that are rich in fat, salt and sugar but poor in vitamins, minerals and other micronutrients, and a decline in physical activity as a result of the increasingly sedentary nature of many forms of work, of new modes of displacement and of increasing urbanization.

Changes in eating habits and physical activity are often the result of environmental and social changes associated with development and the lack of support policies in sectors such as health, farming, transport, urban planning, environment, processing, distribution and marketing of food, and education.

What are the common consequences of overweight and obesity for health?

Cardiovascular diseases (mainly heart disease and stroke), which in 2012 were the main cause of death, diabetes, disorders of the locomotor system (especially osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease of the joints very disabling), and some cancers (of the endometrium, breast and colon).

The risk of contracting these non-communicable diseases increases with the increase in BMI.

Childhood obesity is associated with a higher probability of obesity, premature death and disability in adulthood. But in addition to these greater future risks, obese children suffer from respiratory distress, increased risk of fractures and hypertension, and present early markers of cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance and psychological effects.

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