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Obesity Basics: What Is It? How Is It Treated?

There is an epidemic of obesity in this country, health experts say. But what is obesity? How is it measured? Find out the answers to these questions and others by taking this quiz, based on information from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).

1. Body mass index (BMI) is the current standard for finding out whether someone is overweight or obese. BMI corrects for differences in height among people. Which BMI reading is considered obese?
2. What percentage of body fat falls in the obese category?
3. How many American adults are considered obese?
4. What causes obesity?
5. Which of these serious health problems has been linked to obesity?
6. If you are considered obese, what percentage of weight loss will bring about positive health changes?
7. What is a healthy weight loss goal?
8. How much physical activity should you aim for each week to help weight loss?
9. If your doctor recommends weight-loss medication, when can you expect to lose the most weight?
10. Bariatric surgery may be recommended for people with a BMI of more than 40. What does the procedure involve?
Publication Source: Created for Wellness Library/November 2002
Publication Source: What is the Clinical Effectiveness and Cost-Effectiveness of Using Drugs in Treating Obese Patients in Primary Care? A Systematic Review. Ara R. Health Technology Assessment. 2012;16(5):s1-s87.
Author: Sinovic, Dianna
Online Source: Changing Your Habits: Steps to Better Health, Weight-control Information Networkhttp://win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/changing-habits.htm
Online Source: Prescription Medications for the Treatment of Obesity, Weight-control Information Networkhttp://win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/prescription.htm
Online Source: Talking with Patients about Weight Loss, Weight-control Information Networkhttp://win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/talking.htm
Online Source: overweight and Obesity Statistics, Weight-control Information Networkhttp://win.niddk.nih.gov/statistics/index.htm
Online Source: Does body weight affect cancer risk? American Cancer Societyhttp://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/dietandphysicalactivity/bodyweightandcancerrisk/body-weight-and-cancer-risk-effects
Online Source: Overweight and Obesity, CDChttp://www.cdc.gov/obesity/adult/defining.html
Online Editor: Sinovic, Dianna
Online Medical Reviewer: Foster, Sara, RN, MPH
Online Medical Reviewer: MMI board-certified, academically affiliated clinician
Date Last Reviewed: 3/7/2014
Date Last Modified: 4/21/2014