What is Morbid Obesity?

a fat woman holding her belly

Everything You Need to Know About Morbid Obesity

Clinically severe obesity, often known as morbid obesity, raises the risk of a variety of additional health problems. Clinically severe, or class 3 obesity in adults is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above with a high percentage of body fat. 

Although BMI is not a diagnostic tool, it can help predict the likelihood of acquiring various health problems. 

Obesity can make it difficult to do basic tasks such as walking, breathing, and sleeping. It can also raise the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and a variety of other illnesses. 

According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, in the United States in 2013–2014, about 1 in 13 people had severe obesity. 

What is the definition of morbid obesity? 

Obesity definition: a high proportion of body fat and a BMI of 40 or above are indicators of severe obesity in adults. BMI is a metric that medical experts use to determine if a person is at risk of having certain health problems. 

BMI is classified in several ways: 




18.5 lbs. 


18.5 lbs. to less than 25 lbs


ranges from 25 to 30 pounds.

Obesity class 1 

30 lb. to 35 lb.

Obesity level 2 

35 to 40 years old 

Obesity level 3 

Over the age of 40 

Obesity increases the risk of heart disease and other health problems. The higher the obesity class, the more likely you are to suffer serious issues. 

It is important to note, however, that a person's BMI does not always reflect whether or not they are at a healthy weight. It does not take into account the proportion of muscle mass to fat mass in the body.

The waist-to-hip ratio and fat distribution in a person's body can be used to determine their likelihood of developing issues. Scientists have connected a high waist circumference caused by body fat to a higher risk of heart disease. Cardiovascular illness. 

Risk Factors and Causes of obesity

Certain variables can increase or decrease the likelihood of developing any type of obesity. Consider the following scenario: 

  • Dietary habits and physical activity levels might have an impact on a person's energy levels. 
  • Access to fresh food and the capacity to exercise can be hampered by socioeconomic factors. 
  • It's possible that genetic variables play a role. 
  • Both genetic and environmental variables may play a role in family history. 
  • Cushing's disease and polycystic ovarian syndrome are two medical illnesses linked to obesity. 
  • Anxiety and stress can cause levels to rise. 
  • Cortisol is a hormone that can alter fat storage and weight gain, and it comes. 

Do social factors play a role in obesity risk? 

According to the authors of a 2017 analysis of studies from around the world, social factors such as the following, among others, may play a role: 

  • levels of health and dietary awareness in workplace settings, including working hours and the likelihood of eating takeout access to and availability of healthy food access to green space and other considerations involving urban living and activity levels stress due to trauma, relationship problems, financial difficulties, or a combination of these factors levels of stress due to trauma, relationship problems, financial difficulties, or a combination of these factors levels of stress due to trauma, relationship problems, financial difficulties, or a combination of these factors levels of stress due to trauma, relationship problems, financial difficulties, 
  • Obesity affects 49.6% of Black people, 44.8 percent of Hispanic people, and 42.2 percent of white people in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Symptoms and warning signs 

Obese people may suffer the following symptoms: 

  • sweating
  • tiredness 
  • joint and back discomfort 
  • difficulty breathing sleep issues, especially snoring difficulties with physical activity 
  • low confidence and feelings of isolation high blood pressure and other metabolic syndrome symptoms high blood pressure and other metabolic syndrome symptoms 
  • Symptoms of various problems are described further down. 

The following are signs of severe obesity: 

A BMI of 40 or higher indicates a significant accumulation of fat throughout the body. Obesity consequences can include 

  • Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and other symptoms are all part of the metabolic syndrome. 
  • "Bad" cholesterol levels are high, while "good" cholesterol levels are low. 
  • triglyceride levels that are too high 
  • stroke 
  • illness of the heart 
  • gallbladder problems 
  • osteoarthritis 
  • Other breathing issues, such as sleep apnea 
  • Depression and anxiety are examples of mental health issues. 
  • a few cancers 
  • an increased chance of physical pain trouble with daily functions and activities 


If a patient contacts their doctor because they are concerned about their weight or BMI, the doctor will most likely: 

  • To determine their BMI, weigh and measure them. 
  • Inquire about your eating and workout habits. 
  • take into account the person's personal and family medical histories 
  • screen for consequences that may require medical treatment, such as high blood pressure, using blood tests to seek for health disorders that may be underlying obesity. 

Options for treatment 

If a person has extreme obesity or obesity-related problems or there may be childhood obesity, a doctor may: 

  • suggest a sensible weight-loss strategy 
  • collaborate with the individual to create an activity plan 
  • suggest a physical therapy programme if the person's mobility is restricted 
  • prescribe orlistat (Alli), a medicine that decreases the amount of fat absorbed by the body 
  • If other approaches fail to resolve any issues, such as type 2 diabetes and other metabolic syndrome symptoms, bariatric surgery is recommended. 

A person should design a proper plan with their doctor or a dietitian and strictly follow the advice. Losing weight too quickly or commencing rigorous activity too soon can be harmful. 

Also available online are a variety of weight-loss medicines, however, they may not be safe or effective. If none of the other methods works, the doctor may suggest surgery. The following are a few of these procedures: 

  • Gastric banding, in which a surgeon places a ring around the stomach to limit the quantity of food that can enter, and gastric bypass, in which a surgeon sets a ring around the stomach to promote the feeling of fullness and lead to the absorption of fewer calories. 
  • Intragastric balloon, a temporary procedure in which the surgeon implants a balloon in the stomach to take up space sleeve gastrectomy, in which the surgeon eliminates a portion of the stomach 
  • When a person loses a lot of weight, they may develop undesirable skin folds. This can also be addressed through surgery. 


There is no one-size-fits-all approach to losing weight or preventing weight gain. The best option will be determined by the person. Dietary changes and exercise, on the other hand, can help.

The Dietary suggestions may include 

  • fruits and vegetables 
  • a preference for raw or unprocessed foods 
  • Choosing healthy fats such as safflower or maize oils instead of trans and saturated fats 
  • Sugar and sweetened foods should be consumed in moderation. 
  • If a healthcare practitioner recommends it, keep track of your caloric intake by utilising a smaller plate. 
  • only eats at set periods and at a slower pace 
  • avoids overeating triggers and routines, such as having cake with coffee at break times 
  • Adults should get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity each week if possible, according to current standards. Walking, swimming or cycling are just a few examples. On most days of the week, it might entail 10-minute sessions many times a day. 
  • Depending on a person's overall health, age, and other criteria, a doctor can recommend how much and what type of exercise they should undertake. 

Take Away

Although severe obesity is not a disease, it can increase the risk of a variety of health problems, some of which can be fatal. Severe obesity may usually be reversed. Anyone who is concerned about obesity or its potential symptoms should seek medical help. Treatments can help a person regulate their weight and potentially avert catastrophic consequences.