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BATON ROUGE, LA – It affects nearly 80 million adults in the U.S. and contributes to more than 300,000 deaths a year, according to the National Institutes of Health. You can first check to see if you classify as it, by just checking your height and stepping on the scale.

“Obesity is defined as a BMI greater than 30. This is a calculation using the metric system, and it is kilograms over meters squared. So weight over height,” said Dr. Lara Falcon, an internist at the Baton Rouge Clinic.

In this week’s Women’s Wellness, we’re talking about obesity.

“If you’re a woman, a 5’4″ anything over 172 pounds is considered obese,” said Dr. Falcon.

Dr. Falcon said obesity affects populations nationwide, and right here at home.

“The Louisiana obesity ranking is number 4 in the United States, which is not something we are proud of,” explained Dr. Falcon. “Our obesity rate in adults is 35% in the state.”

Who is more susceptible to obesity?

“Thirty-six percent of women are obese, worldwide, 38%. Non-Hispanic black women have an obesity rate of 58%, Hispanic women 45% and non-Hispanic whites are at 35%,” said Dr. Falcon.

Dr. Falcon said for those who are obese, they have a greater risk for several health conditions, including diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, heart disease and sleep apnea to name a few.

Dr. Falcon said for more severe cases, surgery is an option, but of course, healthy diet and exercise plan is always recommended, and there are things to make keeping track of it a lot easier.

“So, it’s very easy to think you’re exercising more or not realizing how much you’re eating, if you’re not monitoring it. So with technology, there are a lot of advances that really do help us. So, there’s a Lose It app, that’s very easy to use. There’s My Fitness Pal. There are Fit Bits. Even on your iPhone, a lot of people aren’t aware of the Health function,” said Dr. Falcon. “The little heart app that’s already preset on your phone. You know, go to your phone right now, and press that app and see how many steps you’ve taken today. How many miles you’ve walked. That’s very easy to do, and most people have that in their pockets already.”

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