If you are less than 40 years of age, male, with a strong family history of diabetes, blood pressure or heart disease, have a normal weight as judged by body mass index (BMI) but have a pot belly, or have gained more than 10 kg since the age 18, do not ignore this and go to your cardiologist to reduce your chances of a future heart attack.

A BMI of 20 to 23 kg/m2 is associated with little or no increased risk unless visceral fat is high, or the subject has gained more than 10 kg since 18 years.

1. Subjects with a BMI of 23 to 30 kg/m2 may be described as having low risk, while those with a BMI of 30 to 35 kg/m2 are at moderate risk. 2. Subjects with a BMI of 35 to 40 kg/m2 are at high risk, and those with a BMI above 40 kg/m2 are at very high risk from their obesity. 3. At any given level of BMI, the risk to health is increased by more abdominal fat (increased weight to hip ratio, WHR), hyperlipidemia, hypertension, age less than 40 years, male sex, and a strong family history of diabetes, hypertension, or heart disease.

The body mass index (BMI) is the most practical way to evaluate the degree of obesity. It is calculated from the height and weight as follows:

BMI = body weight (in kg) รท square of stature (height, in meters)

Overweight is defined as a BMI between 23 and 30 kg/m2 and obesity as a BMI greater than 30 kg/m2.