Who is at Risk?
All overweight and obese adults (age 18 years of age or older) with a BMI of ³25 are considered at risk for developing associated morbidities or diseases such as hypertension, high blood cholesteral, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, and other diseases. Individuals with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight, while individuals with a BMI ³30 are considered obese.
Treatment of overweight is recommended only when patients have two or more risk factors or a high waist circumference. It should focus on altering dietary and physical activity patterns to prevent development of obesity and to produce moderate weight loss. Treatment of obesity should focus on producing substantial weight loss over a prolonged period. The presence of comorbidities in overweight and obese patients should be considered when deciding on treatment options.
Why Treat Overweight and Obesity?
Obesity is clearly associated with increased morbidity and mortality. There is strong evidence that weight loss in overweight and obese individuals reduces risk factors for diabetes and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Strong evidence exists that weight loss reduces blood pressure in both overweight hypertensive and nonhypertensive individuals; reduces serum triglycerides and increases high-density lipoprotein (HDL)-cholesterol; and generally produces some reduction in total serum cholesterol and
low-density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol.
Weight loss reduces blood glucose levels in overweight and obese persons without diabetes; and weight loss also reduces blood glucose levels and HbA1c in some patients with type 2 diabetes. Although there have been no prospective trials to show changes in mortality with weight loss in obese patients, reductions in risk factors would suggest that development of type 2 diabetes and CVD would be reduced with weight loss.
What Treatments Are Effective?
A variety of effective options exist for the management of overweight and obese patients, including dietary therapy approaches such as low-calorie diets and lower-fat diets; altering physical activity patterns; behavior therapy techniques; pharmacotherapy*; surgery; and combinations of these techniques.
(Source: Obesity in Adults)