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Definition of Overweight

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Overweight: The term "overweight" is used in two different ways. In one sense it is a way of saying imprecisely that someone is heavy. The other sense of "overweight" is more precise and designates a state between normal weight and obesity.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) now defines overweight in terms of the BMI (the body mass index) which is a person's weight in kilograms (kg) divided by their height in meters (m)squared. Since the BMI describes the body weight relative to height, it correlates strongly (in adults) with the total body fat content.

Overweight is a BMI of 27.3 % or more for women and 27.8 % or more for men, according to the NIH.

Obesity is a BMI of 30 and above, according to the NIH.

QUESTION

Weight loss occurs in the belly before anywhere else. See Answer
Reviewed on 12/12/2018

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