Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
- Obesity facts
- What is obesity?
- How common is obesity?
- What are the health risks associated with obesity?
- What causes obesity?
- What are other factors associated with obesity?
- How is body fat measured?
- What about weight-for-height tables?
- What is the body mass index (BMI)?
- Does it matter where body fat is located?
- What can be done about obesity?
- What is the role of physical activity and exercise in obesity?
- What is the role of diet in the treatment of obesity?
- What is the role of medication in the treatment of obesity?
- What about herbal fen/phen?
- What about meal substitutes, artificial sweeteners, and OTC products?
- What is the role of surgery in the treatment of obesity?
- How can patients choose a safe and successful weight-loss program?
- Patient Comments: Obesity - Effective Treatments
- Find a local Internist in your town
- Obesity means having excess body fat. For adults 35 and older, having a BMI greater than 30 is considered obese.
- Obesity is not just a cosmetic consideration. It is a chronic medical disease that can lead to diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, gallstones, and other chronic illnesses.
- Obesity is difficult to treat and has a high relapse rate. Greater than 95% of those who lose weight regain the weight within five years.
- Even though medications and diets can help, the treatment of obesity cannot be a short-term "fix" but has to be a life-long commitment to proper diet habits, increased physical activity, and regular exercise.
- The goal of treatment should be to achieve and maintain a "healthier weight," not necessarily an ideal weight.
- Even a modest weight loss of 5%-10% of initial weight and the long-term maintenance of that weight loss can bring significant health benefits by lowering blood pressure and lowering the risks of diabetes and heart disease.
- The chances of long-term successful weight loss are enhanced if the doctor works with a team of professionals, including dietitians, psychologists, and exercise professionals.
What is obesity?
The definition of obesity varies depending on what one reads. In general, overweight and obesity indicate a weight greater than what is considered healthy. Obesity is a chronic condition defined by an excess amount body fat. A certain amount of body fat is necessary for storing energy, heat insulation, shock absorption, and other functions.
Obesity is best defined by using the body mass index. The body mass index is calculated using a person's height and weight. The body mass index (BMI) equals a person's weight in kilograms (kg) divided by their height in meters (m) squared. Since BMI describes body weight relative to height, it is strongly correlated with total body fat content in adults. An adult who has a BMI of 25-29.9 is considered overweight, and an adult who has a BMI over 30 is considered obese.
Next: How common is obesity?
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