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Obtaining resting metabolic rates (RMR) via indirect calorimetry is a critical component of weight management that is used to calculate a new concept, metabolic factor. This calculation allows for the standardized expression of RMR to make it possible to compare metabolism between people and over time. This study found an inverse relationship between weight and metabolic factor, statistically significant, r = -­‐.63, p < 0.001, effect size = .46, suggesting that people who weigh more tend to have lower metabolic factors. Furthermore, statistically significant differences were found in the metabolic factors between people who were normal weight, overweight, and obese, p < 0.001. There was also an inverse relationship between metabolic factor and age, r = -­‐0.21, p < .05, effect size = .03, suggesting that age has a small but significant effect of metabolic factor. This variable has the potential to play a key role in treatment planning as it can be used to set realistic weight goals, determine caloric needs for a given weight, and to make decisions as to surgical intervention. More importantly, metabolic factor can be a key instrument in clinical work used to educate people regarding unique differences in metabolism to lower prejudice against the obese and to reduce the devastating shame that often accompanies weight issues.

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Originally published in the Archives of Medical and Biomedical Research, 1(2), 47-53. Licensed under CC BY-NC 3.0. This material can be found here.