Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have a negative effect on health, leading to reduced life expectancy and increased health problems. People are considered obese when their body mass index (BMI) exceeds 30. Body Mass Index or BMI is a measurement obtained by dividing a person's weight by the square of his height.
Obesity is most commonly caused by a combination of excessive food energy intake and lack of physical activity. Though genetic susceptibility may cause obesity there are only few cases of obesity primarily by genetic disorder, endocrine disorders, medications, or psychiatric illness. Increasing rates of obesity at a societal level are due to an easily accessible and palatable diet, increased reliance on cars, and mechanized manufacturing.
With Obesity the chance of increase of various diseases, particularly heart disease, type II diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, certain types of cancer, and osteoarthritis exist. Obesity is a leading preventable cause of death worldwide, with increasing rates in adults and children. Authorities view it as one of the most serious public health problems of the 21st century. Obesity is stigmatized in much of the modern world particularly in the Western countries, though it was widely seen as a symbol of wealth and fertility at other times in history in year 2013 the American Medical Association classified obesity as a disease.
Evidence to support the view that some obese people eat little yet gain weight due to a slow metabolism is limited. On average, obese people have greater energy expenditure than their thin counterparts due to the energy required to maintain an increased body mass.
Dieting and exercising are the main treatments for obesity. Diet quality can be improved by reducing the consumption of energy-dense foods, such as those high in fat and sugars, and by increasing the intake of dietary fiber. Diet programs may produce weight loss over short term, but maintaining this weight loss is frequently difficult and often requires making exercise and a lower food energy diet a permanent part of a person's lifestyle.
With a suitable diet, anti-obesity drugs may be taken to reduce appetite or decrease fat absorption. If diet, exercise, and medication are not effective, a gastric balloon may assist with weight loss, or surgery may be performed to reduce stomach volume and bowel length, leading to feeling full earlier and a reduced ability to absorb nutrients from food.
Intensive behavioral counseling is recommended in those who are both obese and have other risk factors for heart disease.
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