Skip to main content
Medicine LibreTexts

12: Body Composition & Maintaining, Gaining, and Losing Weight

  • 12.1: Introduction to Body Composition & Maintaining, Gaining, and Losing Weight
  • 12.2: Too Little or Too Much Weight?
    The number of overweight and obese people in the world has now surpassed the number that is starving. As BMIs increase over 25, the risks increase for heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, endometrial cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, stroke, osteoarthritis, liver disease, gallbladder disorders, and hormonal disorders. Being underweight is linked to nutritional deficiencies that cause iron-deficiency anemia and delayed wound healing, and hormonal abnormalities.
  • 12.3: Indicators of Health: Body Mass Index, Body Composition, and Fat Distribution
    Most people who are overweight also have excessive body fat and therefore body weight is an indicator of obesity in much of the population. To standardize the “ideal” body weight and relate it to health, scientists have devised some computational measurements to better define a healthy ideal weight. Body weight in relation to height is called BMI and is correlated with disease risk. Total body fat mass is another predictor of disease risk; another is where the fat is distributed.
  • 12.4: Dietary, Behavioral, and Physical Activity Recommendations for Weight Management
    No single theory has emerged to explain the obesity epidemic. It is a multifaceted disease with many factors contributing to its cause. The best treatment is to avoid becoming overweight and obese. Health professionals know that weight loss improves the many risks factors and diseases associated with excessive fat deposits. Successful weight loss is defined as when individuals intentionally lose at least 10 percent of their body weight and keep it off for at least one year.
  • 12.6: Methods to Detect Body Composition in Sports
    Body composition is used to describe the percentages of fat, bone, water and muscle in human bodies. Because muscular tissue takes up less space in our body than fat tissue, our body composition, as well as our weight, determines leanness. Two people of the same sex and body weight may look completely different because they have a different body composition.
  • 12.7: Diets and Weight Loss for Athletes