BMI is used as a parameter to measure the Overweight or Obesity in adults, whereas for children it is measured by comparing the body weight and height.
Body Mass Index or BMI is a standard medical parameter which is followed for defining overweight and obesity issues as advised by WHO.
From WHO reports say that, death rate in case of peoples suffering from overweight and obesity is more worldwide in comparison to underweight.
The recommended BMI for healthy person should be as follows –
Body Mass Index (BMI) is used to define a stage of overweight and obesity in adults. It is a simple index of comparing weight in respect of height. It is expressed as body weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters ( kg / m2 ).
- In adults, a BMI greater than 25 is considered as overweight.
- In adults, a BMI greater than 30 is considered as obesity.
For children under the age of 5 years, body weight and body height are taken in consideration in defining overweight and obesity.
- If body weight comparing with height is found greater than 2 standard deviations from WHO Growth Reference median, it is considered as overweight.
- If body weight comparing with height is found greater than 3 standard deviations from WHO Growth Reference median, it is considered as obesity.
For children in the age between 5 to 19 years, body weight and body height are taken in consideration in defining overweight and obesity.
- If body weight comparing with height is found greater than 1 standard deviation from WHO Growth Reference median, it is considered as overweight.
- If body weight comparing with height is found greater than 2 standard deviations from WHO Growth Reference median, it is considered as obesity.
Main causes of obesity and overweight are summarized as follows –
- Energy imbalance between consumed calories taken in food and calories exhausted in physical activities on daily basis.
- An increase in intake of energy rich foods which are high in fat and sugars contents.
- Intake of excess alcohol and habit of smoking also contribute to weight gain.
- A decrease in physical activity to exhaust the energy taken as food.
- Low testosterone hormone levels in body increases fat and decreases muscle mass.
- Overweight and obesity can also happen due to genetically progress from parents.
- Overweight may also cause due to medical conditions like hypothyroidism, Cushing’s syndrome, some kidney and heart problems etc.
- Certain medications like steroids, anti-epileptics and hormones may cause weight gain.
- Stress, anxiety, sadness, depression and lack of sound sleep make a person to eat more which leads to overweight.
- Dyslipidemia i.e. high level of cholesterol in body results in deposition of bad cholesterol in the blood vessels and increases the risk of heart diseases such as heart attacks, arrhythmias and heart failure, strokes, etc.
- Due to human’s nature of work, idleness and excessive use of modes of transportation instead of walking increases body weight.
- Lack of awareness about overweight and obesity among people.
High BMI corresponding to overweight and obesity leads to many diseases such as –
- Heart diseases and heart stroke ( Cardiovascular diseases ).
- Blood sugar and type 2 Diabetes.
- Hypertension i.e. high blood pressure over 120 mm of Hg.
- Dyslipidemia i.e. excess level of cholesterol in blood.
- Osteoarthritis ( a musculoskeletal disorders in none joints ).
- Some cancers ( including breast, ovarian, prostate, liver, gallbladder, kidney, and colon ).
- Breathing difficulties, hypertension and psychological effects.
Overweight and obesity can be prevented by use of supportive environments and communities or by use of healthier foods and regular physical activities. These are –
- Limit energy intake by consuming nutrients which are less in fats and sugar.
- Avoid using fast foods, less use of processed foods and oily substances.
- Increase in consumption of fruit, vegetables, pulses, grains etc.
- Engage yourself in regular physical activity, walking and physical exercise.
- Use of healthier dietary nutrients.