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Obesity

Classification and Effects of Obesity: – Underweight, normal weight, overweight, and obese classifications based on BMI – Obesity increases risk of metabolic diseases, cardiovascular disease, […]

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Classification and Effects of Obesity:
– Underweight, normal weight, overweight, and obese classifications based on BMI
– Obesity increases risk of metabolic diseases, cardiovascular disease, osteoarthritis, depression, and certain cancers
– Shortens life expectancy and increases risk for various diseases

Mortality and Morbidity Associated with Obesity:
– Obesity is a leading preventable cause of death globally
– Mortality risk lowest at certain BMI ranges for non-smokers and smokers
– Obesity increases risk of physical and mental conditions, metabolic syndrome, diabetes type 2, and high blood pressure
– Obesity linked to severe COVID-19 illness and long COVID

Causes and Prevalence of Obesity:
– Individual, socioeconomic, and environmental causes contribute to obesity
– Factors include diet, physical activity, genetic susceptibility, automation, urbanization, and mental disorders
– Over 1 billion people globally were obese in 2022, with rates doubling in adults since 1990
– Obesity more common in women, stigmatized in most cultures

Treatment, Prevention, and Dietary Choices:
– Focus on identifying healthier obese individuals, risk stratification for type 2 diabetes
– Guidelines for prevention include body composition, waist circumference, and calf strength
– Dietary choices like increased carbohydrate consumption, sweetened beverages, and fast food contribute to rising obesity rates
– Calorie count laws and nutrition labels aim to guide healthier food choices

Genetics, Lifestyle, and Environmental Factors in Obesity:
– Obesity results from genetic and environmental factors, with polymorphisms in appetite and metabolism genes playing a role
– Sedentary lifestyle, insufficient exercise, urbanization, and lack of physical activity contribute to obesity
– Social influences, gut bacteria differences, and factors like lack of sleep, obesogens, and personality traits also affect obesity
– Public health efforts, anti-obesity medications, and bariatric surgery are part of medical interventions for obesity

Obesity (Wikipedia)

Obesity is a medical condition, sometimes considered a disease, in which excess body fat has accumulated to such an extent that it can potentially have negative effects on health. People are classified as obese when their body mass index (BMI)—a person's weight divided by the square of the person's height—is over 30 kg/m2; the range 25–30 kg/m2 is defined as overweight. Some East Asian countries use lower values to calculate obesity. Obesity is a major cause of disability and is correlated with various diseases and conditions, particularly cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, certain types of cancer, and osteoarthritis.

Obesity
Three silhouettes depicting the outlines of an optimally sized (left), overweight (middle), and obese person (right).
Silhouettes and waist circumferences representing optimal, overweight, and obese
SpecialtyEndocrinology
SymptomsIncreased fat
ComplicationsCardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, certain types of cancer, osteoarthritis, depression
CausesExcessive consumption of energy-dense foods, sedentary work and lifestyles and lack of physical activity, changes in modes of transportation, urbanization, lack of supportive policies, lack of access to a healthy diet, genetics
Diagnostic methodBMI > 30 kg/m2
PreventionSocietal changes, changes in the food industry, access to a healthy lifestyle, personal choices
TreatmentDiet, exercise, medications, surgery
PrognosisReduced life expectancy
FrequencyOver 1 billion / 12.5% (2022)
Deaths2.8 million people per year

Obesity has individual, socioeconomic, and environmental causes. Some known causes are diet, physical activity, automation, urbanization, genetic susceptibility, medications, mental disorders, economic policies, endocrine disorders, and exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals.

While a majority of obese individuals at any given time attempt to lose weight and are often successful, maintaining weight loss long-term is rare. There is no effective, well-defined, evidence-based intervention for preventing obesity. Obesity prevention requires a complex approach, including interventions at societal, community, family, and individual levels. Changes to diet as well as exercising are the main treatments recommended by health professionals. Diet quality can be improved by reducing the consumption of energy-dense foods, such as those high in fat or sugars, and by increasing the intake of dietary fiber, if these dietary choices are available, affordable, and accessible. Medications can be used, along with a suitable diet, to reduce appetite or decrease fat absorption. If diet, exercise, and medication are not effective, a gastric balloon or surgery may be performed to reduce stomach volume or length of the intestines, leading to feeling full earlier, or a reduced ability to absorb nutrients from food.

Obesity is a leading preventable cause of death worldwide, with increasing rates in adults and children. In 2022, over 1 billion people were obese worldwide (879 million adults and 159 million children), representing more than a double of adult cases (and four times higher than cases among children) registered in 1990. Obesity is more common in women than in men. Today, obesity is stigmatized in most of the world. Conversely, some cultures, past and present, have a favorable view of obesity, seeing it as a symbol of wealth and fertility. The World Health Organization, the US, Canada, Japan, Portugal, Germany, the European Parliament and medical societies, e.g. the American Medical Association, classify obesity as a disease. Others, such as the UK, do not.

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