An overweight body works less efficiently and has a higher risk for several weight-related diseases and health conditions than normal-weight bodies. Body mass index (BMI) is an excellent screening tool that determines your weight category as compared to other people your same height.
Dr. Nirav Naik, our weight loss surgery specialist at New Life Medical in Bakersfield, California, considers your BMI along with other critical information to evaluate your health and your risk for weight-related problems. Here’s what he recommends if your BMI shows that you’re overweight.
It’s important to understand that BMI is a screening tool, not a diagnostic tool. It gives your doctor an idea of how your weight may be affecting your overall health. A standard formula using your height and weight calculates your BMI category. Here’s what the numbers mean:
Because being overweight and obese is associated with several serious health conditions — including hypertension, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, stroke, and cancer — it’s important to address weight issues as soon as possible.
You can calculate your BMI by using this formula: your weight in pounds divided by your height in inches, multiplied by 703. Or you can simply plug your weight and height into our BMI calculator.
BMI calculations don’t take into account some important factors, namely your age and gender. Because women tend to carry more fat than men, and older folks have more fat than younger people, it’s possible for two people to have the same BMI but have different health risks.
Body fat composition is an important component of your overall health picture. For example, if you carry excess fat around your gut, you have a higher risk for health problems than people who have fat arms and legs, because your vital organs reside in your abdominal cavity.
Also, muscle weighs more than fat, so a bodybuilder may have a high BMI that indicates overweight, when they’re extremely healthy and fit. For these reasons, Dr. Naik only uses BMI as one of several tools to evaluate your health.
If your BMI is in the 25-29.9 range, you’re considered overweight, and you need to take action. It won’t surprise you to hear that adjusting your diet and exercise is still the best approach to losing weight. Reducing calories, increasing exercise, and controlling portion sizes are key. What, when, and how you eat can also impact your weight. If you’re trying to lose weight:
Getting enough sleep and reducing the amount of stress in your life can also aid weight loss.
If your BMI puts you into the obese category, it becomes even more important for you to lose weight. At New Life Medical, we work with many patients who’ve tried for years to lose weight with no success. Weight loss is a complex process and involves many variables that are difficult to control.
Dr. Naik may recommend weight loss surgery to help you reach a healthy weight. He has extensive experience and offers several procedures using the most advanced technology:
If you have a BMI of 30 or higher, especially if you have obesity-related health conditions, you may be a good candidate for weight loss surgery. To find out, call us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Naik to discuss your options.