Obesity is a chronic condition of being overweight, which can pose severe health risks. In many cases, obesity triggers other health problems, so-called comorbidities, significantly affecting the quality of life or even shortening life expectancy:

  • Diabetes 
  • Hypertension
  • High cholesterol  
  • Heart and cardiac disease
  • Lung disease
  • Back and joint issues
  • Depression
  • Certain cancers:
    • In men: prostate and colon cancer
    • In women: gallbladder cancer, uterus cancer, ovarian cancer and breast cancer

Losing weight will directly improve these conditions, or they might even disappear.

There are 3 ways to calculate the level of obesity:


The Body Mass Index (BMI) is an index indicating the ratio between the height and weight of a person. A BMI of 30 or higher is considered as obese. An elevated BMI score is generally taken as an increased health risk. 

Calculate your BMI here

Waist circumference

Your waist circumference indicates the impact of excess weight on your general health. The table below gives you an overview of the related health risk:

  Women Men
Normal < 80 cm < 94 cm
Slightly overweight 80-88 cm 94-100 cm
Seriously overweight > 88 cm > 100 cm

Waist-hip ratio

A third way to calculate the obesity level is by calculating the ratio of your waste circumference and hip circumference, used as an indicator of fat distribution in your body. Apple-shaped people carry fat mostly in the tummy area, whereas when you are pear-shaped fat sits mainly on the hips. Since abdominal fat causes more harm to your health than fat on the hips, an apple shape is considered a higher health risk.