Your health questions answered: Am I obese? If so, why?

Dr Ramzi Alshaiba, specialist of general surgery at Bareen International Hospital, shares his tips for managing a healthy weight

Obese people in the UAE are delaying seeking mdical treatment, putting their health at greater risk. The National
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General surgeon Dr Ramzi Alshaiba says: "If you have extra body weight, it means you are overweight, while having high levels of extra body fat means you are obese. Both conditions raise the risk of developing high cholesterol, high blood pressure, asthma, sleep apnoea, osteoarthritis, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer.

"In most cases, disability, which can be categorised as intellectual or physical, is linked with obesity. Much scientific research has shown that those with either type of disability are 1.2 to 3.9 times more likely to become obese.

Being "overweight and obesity are different points on a scale that ranges from underweight to morbidly obese. Where you fit on this scale is determined by your body mass index, which is a measure of your weight as it relates to your height.  

Dr Ramzi Alshaiba works at at Bareen International Hospital in Abu Dhabi. Courtesy Bareen International Hospital

"In general, a BMI between 20 to 24.9 in adults is considered to be ideal. A BMI between 25 and 29 is overweight, greater than 30 is obese and greater than 40 is morbidly obese.

"Men's weight after the age of 50 tends to stay the same and falls slightly between the ages of 60 and 74. On the other hand, women's weight tends to rise until age 60, then starts to decrease.

"There are two main ingredients in combating obesity – a healthy diet and an active lifestyle. A few tips for losing excess body fat are eating more fruit, vegetables, nuts and wholegrain food. Exercise, at least moderately, for 30 minutes or more daily, and cut down on fatty, sugary and salty food.

Dr Ramzi Alshaiba is a specialist in general surgery at Bareen International Hospital, Mohammed Bin Zayed City, Abu Dhabi


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