Community Health Network

Ranked among the nation's most integrated healthcare systems, Community Health Network is Central Indiana's leader in providing convenient access to exceptional healthcare services, where and when patients need them—in hospitals, health pavilions, workplaces, schools and homes.

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Obesity facts

Obesity is emerging as a health epidemic around the world. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity is rapidly spreading across all regions and demographic groups. More than one third (37.5%) of adults in the United States are overweight or obese and almost 17% of children are obese1. That amounts to over 78 million U.S. adults and 12.5 million children and adolescents. The latest research indicates that today obesity is as common in men as in women, and that adults aged 60 and older are more likely to be obese, particularly women.

Obesity definition and BMI

Obesity is an excess of total body fat, which results from caloric intake that exceeds energy usage. A common measurement used to assess obesity is Body Mass Index (BMI). BMI is calculated using a person's weight and height and is a reliable screening tool for weight problems that may lead to other health risks. Obesity is defined as a BMI of 30 or greater; morbid obesity is BMI =40. General guidelines for obesity levels and associated BMI are shown below. Calculate your own BMI >>

Ideal weight
Morbidly obese


What causes obesity?

A number of factors play a role in whether a person becomes overweight or obese. These include long-term energy imbalance (more coming IN than going OUT), genetics, body metabolism, eating and life habits (e.g., inactive lifestyle, smoking, lack of sleep), medicines, attitudes and emotion, culture, where people live, and income. Changes in behavior and environment are often the most effective at reducing obesity rates2.

Health effects of obesity

A number of serious health conditions are associated with obesity. The National Institutes of Health report that morbid obesity may considerably reduce life expectancy3. Often referred to as "co-morbidities," common obesity health risks include:

  • Hypertension/high blood pressure
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • High cholesterol
  • Cancers (endometrial, colon, breast)
  • Infertility
  • Sleep apnea
  • Osteoarthritis, joint problems
  • Stroke
  • Liver and gallbladder disease

What can I do about my obesity?

If you are overweight or obese, there are conventional options for weight loss. Diet, exercise and medication methods work for some and may lead to short-term weight loss. However, the "yo-yo" syndrome—a cycle of weight loss and weight gain—is all too common. This is an unhealthy, non-permanent approach to weight loss.

Weight loss surgery

If you are morbidly obese or obese with related health conditions, surgical weight loss may be a better option for long-term weight loss success. We specialize in LAP-BAND® System surgery, a unique tool that can help you achieve and maintain significant weight loss, improve your health and enhance your quality of life. This procedure is the safest, least traumatic and only adjustable and reversible obesity surgery available in the United States.

How can we help?

Call Community Bariatric Services - Hamilton today at 317-621-2511, attend a FREE class or watch an informative video from home to discover if bariatric lap band surgery is right for you!

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1: 2009-2010 data report
2: CDC: Causes and consequences of obesity
3: The medical risks of obesity

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