Obesity is a serious disease with symptoms that build slowly over an extended period of time. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) define morbid obesity as:
- Being 100 pounds or more above your ideal body weight
- Or, having a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or greater
- Or, having a BMI of 35 or greater and one or more co-morbid condition
- You can have your BMI calculated for you here
The disease of morbid obesity interferes with basic physical functions such as breathing or walking. Long-term implications of the disease include shorter life expectancy, serious health consequences in the form of weight-related conditions such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, and a lower quality of life with fewer economic and social opportunities.
Obesity is a serious public health issue in the U.S.
- 24 million U.S. adults are living with morbid obesity and may qualify for bariatric surgery based on NIH guidelines.
- It was projected that by 2010 there may be 31 million U.S. adults living with morbid obesity and may qualify for bariatric surgery based on NIH guidelines.