Some young adults who have been involved in athletic activities in high school often drop these activities when entering college or the workforce, without a corresponding decrease in the amount and types of food they eat. Food availability and eating habits on college campuses are notoriously bad, and alcohol intake contributes to an increase in “empty calories.” Parents should talk to their child about a plan to remain active and eat healthy while away at school.
(Source: American Academy of Pediatrics)
Weight that is higher than what is considered as a healthy weight for a given height is described as overweight or obese.
- Assessing Your Weight
BMI and waist circumference are two screening tools to estimate weight status and potential disease risk.
- Healthy Weight
A high BMI can be an indicator of high body fatness. Visit the Healthy Weight Website; learn about balancing calories, losing weight, and maintaining a healthy weight.
Healthy eating habits are a key factor for a healthy weight. Visit the ChooseMyPlate Website; look up nutritional information of foods, track your calorie intake, plan meals, and find healthy recipes.
- Physical Activity Basics
Physical activity is important for health and a healthy weight. Learn about different kinds of physical activity and the guidelines for the amount needed each day.
- Tips for Parents
Learn about the seriousness of childhood obesity and how to help your child establish healthy behaviors.
If your BMI is less than 18.5, it falls within the underweight range.
If your BMI is 18.5 to <25, it falls within the normal.
If your BMI is 25.0 to <30, it falls within the overweight range.
If your BMI is 30.0 or higher, it falls within the obese range.
Note: At an individual level, BMI can be used as a screening tool but is not diagnostic of the body fatness or the health of an individual. A trained healthcare provider should perform appropriate health assessments in order to evaluate an individual’s health status and risks.
Health Consequences of Obesity
People who have obesity, compared to those with a normal or healthy weight, are at increased risk for many serious diseases and health conditions, including the following:
- All-causes of death (mortality)
- High blood pressure (Hypertension)
- High LDL cholesterol, low HDL cholesterol, or high levels of triglycerides (Dyslipidemia)
- Type 2 diabetes
- Coronary heart disease
- Gallbladder disease
- Osteoarthritis (a breakdown of cartilage and bone within a joint)
- Sleep apnea and breathing problems
- Some cancers (endometrial, breast, colon, kidney, gallbladder, and liver)
- Low quality of life
- Mental illness such as clinical depression, anxiety, and other mental disorders
- Body pain and difficulty with physical functioning