Severe obesity can cut lives short by up to 14 years, according to a new study by the U.S. National Cancer Institute.
The report, published in the journal PLOS Medicine, found that people who were considered severely obese can die much earlier due to the increased risks of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and other diseases.
The study is based on 20 studies from the United States, Sweden and Australia over the course of 30 years.
It addressed prevalence of class III obesity (body mass index of or greater than 40) and found it has increased dramatically in several countries.
Body mass index (BMI) is a calculation of body fat based on height and weight.
Currently, class III obesity affects 6 percent of adults in the U.S., and severely obese men and women are more likely to die earlier than people of normal weight (BMI of 18.5 to 24.9), according to the findings.
Extreme obesity accounts for 509 deaths per 100,000 men each year and 382 excess deaths per 100,000 women, according to Cari Kitahara of the U.S. National Cancer Institute.
Visit your doctor to find out your BMI. You can also visit WebMD, but the site is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health.
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