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How can I tell if my weight is affecting my health?

It can be difficult to tell if your weight is affecting your health, but if you are overweight or obese it most certainly is. Many of the diseases associated with obesity, such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, dyslipidemia, pancreatitis and liver disease, go unknown until something major occurs such as a heart attack or liver failure. If you are overweight or obese you should see your primary care provider to find ways to manage your weight.
Your healthcare professional should ask you questions or conduct tests to determine the risk factors for disease and conditions associated with obesity. This includes:
  • Taking a personal weight history
  • Determining your waist-to-hip ratio. Divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement (the widest part of your behind). Ideally, women should have a waist-to-hip ratio of 0.8 or less.
  • Asking if you have relatives with illnesses related to being overweight, such as type 2 diabetes mellitus or heart disease
  • Discussing weight-loss methods you have used in the past
  • Taking your blood pressure and conducting blood tests

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.