According to a recent study, approximately 61% of Americans are overweight and of that number half of them are obese!
So, What is the difference between being overweight and being obese?
To put it in a nutshell, obesity is excessive fatness. Possibly the most accurate method of determining obesity is to calculate body mass index (BMI). BMI takes into account a person’s weight and height to gauge total body fat in adults. A common rule of thumb is that a BMI of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight, a condition that carries moderate health risks. A BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese.
BMI is relative and should not be your sole method for determining if you are overwieght or obese!
BMI is a general formula and does not take into account excessive muscle mass. For example, Luke from sixpacksmackdown has a BMI of 26.5 which would put him in the “overweight” category. Luke is about 5.5% body fat so he can’t really be obese. Therefore using BMI as the sole indicator of determining if you are overweight or obese may not yield entirely correct results.
So, Why are Americans so overweight?
Among many factors, Americans seems to eat larger portions of food as compared to people in other countries. Americans are also busier, take less vacation and “on the run” more than people in other countries meaning they consume more fast food (which is high in fat, calories and sodium). To top it off, due to the busy lifestyle, most Americans find pleasure in plopping down on the couch and watching TV and snacking on high-calorie, highly processed convenience foods. Americans are plain and simple more sedentary than people in outher countries. This sedentary activity combined with large portions of unhealthy foods adds to the American waist line. Plain and simple, most Americans don’t eat healthy, don’t exercise, and overeat!
Are you an overweight American? Get back on track with a few simple food substitutions that will help you to begin reducing your caloric intake.