World Obesity Day was set up as a way of finding practical solutions to end the global obesity crisis. With 2 in 3 adults now overweight or obese, the population is carrying a lot of extra weight. As a society, we have become so accepting of this fact that most people can no longer recognise when someone is overweight or obese.
So, what do you think ‘obese’ looks like? In our line-up, can you correctly identify where our model moves from a healthy weight to overweight and into the obese category? In this example the woman is 35 years old and 5ft 5in.
Do we ever really know how big we are? Mirrors in shops tell lies as blatant as those at funfairs. Then there are those of us with ‘full length mirror phobia’ who might not have looked in the mirror in a while – #WeGetYou. Individuals may have an awareness that they are overweight, but they are probably unaware of how ‘small’ obese is. Those who are ‘overweight’ (i.e. not yet obese) are also more likely to continue the pattern and become obese over time.
The body mass index equation (BMI) is the one way to discover whether potential health issues loom in the future.
Know your BMI
Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of body fat based on your weight in relation to your height. Have you got your calculator ready? Here’s the calculation:
Divide your weight in kilos by your height in metres squared.
For example, for a woman who is 5ft 5in and weighing 13st her BMI calculation would be:
82.6 / (1.67 x 1.67) = 30
A BMI greater than 40 is considered morbidly obese; between 30-39.9 is considered obese; 25-29.9 is considered overweight; 18.5-24.9 is normal; and less than 18.5 is underweight. Remember, there’s 14 lbs to one stone and 12 inches to one foot.
If we don’t even realise what an unhealthy weight is, then how can anyone ever help themselves? As a society we need to become more aware of what obesity looks like in the flesh, so that we can recognise the danger that lies ahead.
Start here, start today!