What is obesity?

Being overweight or obese is defined as having an abnormal or excessive accumulation of fat that is harmful to health.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) considers that a person is overweight when their body mass index (BMI) is above 25 and is obese when it is equal to or above 30.  In Belgium, 49.3% of the adult population is overweight and 16% of the population is obese. The risk of being overweight or obese increases with age as it applies to one third and one fifth of the population respectively after the age of 35.  It is a public health problem associated with the development of numerous diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes.    


The Erasmus Hospital Integrated Obesity Centre (CIO)  proposes three care modules for persons who are overweight or obese: intensive coaching, medical interventions (including intergastric balloon or gastric pication) and surgery. Each module is personalised for each patient. As a patient at the CIO you are at the heart of a multidisciplinary team of experts in which you are the key actor in your own care. At each stage you will be accompanied by a team of dieticians, psychologists, endocrinologists, nutritionist doctors, gastroenterologists, surgeons and physiotherapists.   

The Integrated Obesity Centre is associated with the Multidisciplinary Obesity Centre for Children located on the HUDERF Campus  that is dedicated to caring for children and adolescents.  These young people receive, on the basis of a medical convention,  multidisciplinary and structured care that is adapted to their needs.   

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The treatment of obesity, for adults and children, is constantly evolving.   

There are numerous research projects in this area, ranging from theses on dietetics (including in children), physiotherapy, psychology and medicine to drug studies and academic studies. The Integrated Obesity Centre and Multidisciplinary Obesity Centre for Children aim to be at the forefront of research and teaching.