Conditions

OBESITY

Overview

Obesity is a medical condition which occurs when you carry excess weight or body fat that may affect your overall health. A person is normally suggested to be obese if they have a high body mass index. Obesity increases the risk of other diseases and health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and certain types of cancers.

Normally obesity stems from a combination of inherited factors, combined with metabolic factors, personal diet and exercise choices. Body mass index (BMI) provides a reasonable estimate of body fat but doesn't directly measure body fat.

How is obesity diagnosed?

In order to diagnose obesity, Dr du Plooy may perform a physical exam and some tests. He may recommend the following:

  • Taking your health history – Your weight history, weight-loss efforts, physical and exercise activities, eating patterns and appetite control. Dr du Plooy may also review your family’s health history to check if you may be susceptible to certain conditions.
  • A general physical exam – Your height will be measured, your vitals will be checked, such as your heart rate, blood pressure and temperature, and your abdomen will be examined.
  • Calculate your BMI – Your BMI will be calculated and checked. If your BMI is over 30, this is considered obesity and may increase your health risk. Your BMI should be checked at least once a year as it will help determine your overall health risks and possible treatment plans.
  • Checking for other health problems – If you have a known health condition, Dr du Plooy will evaluate it. The medical specialist will also check whether you may have other health problems such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
  • Blood tests – Depending on your health, risk factors and current symptoms will determine which blood test should be done. These may include a cholesterol test, liver function tests, fasting glucose, a thyroid test and others.
How is obesity treated?

Obesity treatment’s main goal is to reach and stay at a healthy weight. This may improve your overall health and lowers the risk of developing complications related to obesity. Dr du Plooy may recommend dietary changes, exercise, behaviour changes, prescription weight-loss medication, endoscopic procedures for weight loss and weight loss surgery such as gastric bypass surgery, etc.

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