Definition of Obesity
Obesity refers to an increase in total body fat. The easiest and most widely accepted method of determining whether you are obese is by measuring your Body Mass Index, or BMI. To calculate your BMI, follow these steps:
1. Multiply your weight in pounds by 705; divide by your height in inches; divide this number by your height in inches a second time.
2. You may also use an online BMI calculator at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Go to http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/.
A normal BMI = 18.5-24.9; overweight = 25.0-29.9; obese = 30 or greater; and morbidly obese = 40 or greater.
Article updated and reviewed by Hubert Chen, MD, Associate Director of Medical Sciences, Amgen Inc. and Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine University of California, San Francisco on July 8, 2005.