Am I Considered to be Fat?

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How many of us. especially women, have asked this question either to ourselves or others: Am I Fat? Being conscious of our weight, sometimes even to the point of obsession, is a part of our culture. Just look around at all the diet and weight management how-to books, DVDs, television shows, self-help programs and classes to reinforce this observation.

First off, what is the difference between being of normal weight, overweight, or obese? Scientists and nutritionists generally use the Body Mass Index (BMI) to answer this question. An adult is considered "overweight" when he or she is above a healthy weight, which varies according to a person's height. An individual is overweight when their BMI is between 25 and 29.9.

An adult with a BMI of 30 or more is considered "obese". For example, for a 5'4" woman, this means that she is 30 or more pounds over her healthy weight.

In reality, how many of us do really need to worry about our weight? The answer is: a lot of us. Obesity in the United States has been increasingly cited as a major health issue in recent decades. While many advanced countries have seen similar increases, the obesity rate in the United States ranks among the highest in the world. As of 2007, 74.1 % of U.S. adults were overweight or obese. Of these, 26.6% were obese.

The direct medical cost of obesity and indirect economic loss to obesity are enormous. And the costs are only going up.

Under pressure from parents and anti-obesity advocates, many schools have banned sodas, junk food, and candy from vending machines and cafeterias. State legislators in California, for example, passed laws banning the sale of machine-dispensed snacks and drinks in elementary schools in 2003, even though the California-Nevada Soft Drink Association objected. A similar law passed by the Connecticut state government in 2005 was vetoed by the governor, who said that the legislation "undermines the control and responsibility of parents with school-aged children."

Many overweight and obese people consume empty calories from soft drinks. In 2006, Cadbury Schweppes, Coca Cola and Pepsi, among other companies, agreed to a voluntary ban on the sale of all high-calorie drinks and all beverages in containers larger than 8, 10 and 12 ounces in elementary, middle and high schools, respectively.
To fight obesity, many non-profit organizations work to educate people on healthy eating and advocate for healthy food choices.

First Lady Michelle Obama is leading an initiative to combat childhood obesity entitled "Let's Move". Mrs. Obama says she aims to wipe out obesity "in a generation". Her advice is to combine a healthy diet with exercise, which can be anything from just getting up and walking to participating in sports.

This combination of exercise and eating a healthy diet that consists of "good" calories is the key to losing weight and then maintaining a healthy weight. A nutritionist is important in educating people about healthy choices. She can also educate clients to understand their relationship to food because we do not always eat just when we are hungry.

About the Author:

Stephen Kelly is a entrepreneur and author. Be sure to check out http://www.jointventurespt.com for more great information like this.

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