Normal-weight obesity syndrome: diagnosis, prevalence, and clinical implications

Nutr Rev. 2016 Sep;74(9):558-70. doi: 10.1093/nutrit/nuw019. Epub 2016 Jul 29.


The growing concern about the impact of overweight on health has led to studies that shed light on types of obesity other than the classic model based on body mass index. Normal-weight obesity syndrome is characterized by excess body fat in individuals with adequate body mass index (18.5-24.9 kg/m(2)). This condition increases the risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and other conditions associated with chronic diseases, such as insulin resistance, hypertension, and dyslipidemia. The aims of this review are to define the diagnostic criteria for normal-weight obesity syndrome and to examine the risks associated with this condition in order to promote preventive measures and early treatment for affected individuals.

Keywords: body composition; inflammation; insulin resistance; obesity; oxidative stress.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adiposity*
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Body Weight*
  • Dyslipidemias / diagnosis
  • Dyslipidemias / etiology
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / diagnosis
  • Hypertension / etiology
  • Insulin Resistance
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / diagnosis*
  • Obesity / epidemiology*
  • Overweight / complications
  • Overweight / diagnosis
  • Overweight / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors