Obesity in America Approximately 127 million adults in the U. are overweight and 60 million are obese. Obesity is determined by ones BMI, or Body Mass Index. The BMI is calculated by dividing one's weight in kilograms by his or her height in meters squared. A BMI of 25 to 30 is considered overweight, thus, a BMI higher than 30 is considered obese. Obesity is considered to be a severe health risk. Consequently, obesity is one of the ten leading causes of death in the United States. The causes of obesity can be generalized into three categories. It entails familial, psychological, and environmental factors. Obesity tends to run in families. This could imply genetic factors. However, the search for an "obesity gene" is complicated and has not yet been isolated. Nevertheless, studies of adopted children have proven that genetics and heredity do play some role. In these studies adopted children have shown to develop weight problems similar to their biological parents. On the other hand, families living together tend to share eating and lifestyle habits. Similarities in diet and lifestyle would also resemble obesity passed on through genetics. This makes it difficult to separate obesity passed on through genetics or through behavior in biological families. Whichever the case might be, studies have proven that obesity is caused in some way through familial means; through behavioral and or genetic links. Furthermore, a number of psychological factors and behavioral problems may cause people to gain weight. Many people eat when they feel stressed, bored, or angry. Food acts as a comforting solution to their emotional distress. This results in an association between emotion and food. For example, eating can become a solution to feelings of low self esteem and negative self image. However, the problem is that this solution only feeds their negative feelings. It becomes a nasty cycle that fuels their obesity and emotional issues.