The Facts and Figures Related to Obesity

Overweight is the amount of body weight including muscles, bone, fat, and water that are in excess. Obesity is the excess of accumulated body fat. It is possible to be overweight based on factors of muscle, such as the case of body builders, which have muscle that weighs three times the amount as fat. Most people that are overweight are also considered obese.

One in three adults age 20-74 is overweight. This equals 58 million Americans based on the studies from 1980 to 1991, with the numbers growing every day. Overweight and obesity are known risk factors for heart disease, high blood pressure, gallbladder disease, diabetes, some forms of cancer, breathing problems, and arthritis.

Women with more than 25body fat and men with 30of body fat are considered obese. It is hard to really measure body fat based on the fact muscle weighs more than fat and the calculations used to measure body mass index (BMI) does not take into consideration the factor of the amounts of muscle on the person’s body. The most accepted method of calculating body fat is the underwater method, which is limited to laboratories with special equipment and not as widely used.

There are two simpler methods for measuring the body fat. One is the skinfold thickness measurement. This test measures the thickness of the skin on different areas such as the triceps. The measurements vary based on the skill of the person taking the measurements. The other test is bioelectric impedance analysis (BIA). BIA sends a small amount of electrical current through the body to estimate the total body water levels. The higher amounts of water levels indicate the amounts of muscle matter. Yet this procedure may not be accurate for people that are severely obese.

The numbers of overweight adults in America in the age range 20 to 74 years old for females are 32 million and men are 26 million. The numbers of overweight youth ages 6 to 17 years old is about 4.7 million or 11of the children in that age group.

Some of the primary reason for people being overweight can be seen in the foods consumed and the exercise levels practiced. The percentage of dietary fat in adults is 34 Saturated fat is 12

Extra calories consumed to gain a pound or to burn a pound is 3,500 calories. The number of women trying to lose weight is 33 to 40 The number of men trying to lose weight is 20 to 24 The average calories burnt while eating is .023 kcal per minute. The annual number of deaths related to poor diet and inactivity is over 300,000.

The costs economically related to overweight and obesity is estimated at $11.3 billion on treatment, diagnosis, and management. This includes treatment for diabetic kentoacidosis, diabetic coma, diabetic eye disease, and diabetic kidney disease all contributed to obesity. The cost related to gallbladder disease is $2.4 billion.

Obesity is $22.2 billion of medical treatment for the heart disease patients.

High blood pressure in obese people costs $1.5 billion with breast and colon cancer costing $1.9 billion. The indirect costs related to obesity in weight reduction products and a service that includes diet foods, products, and programs is $33 billion a year.

These are just a sample of the many facts that are available about being overweight and/or obese.


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