No such thing as healthy obesity

NoHealthyObesity“No level of obesity is healthy,” concluded a study of 61,000 people, reported in The Week magazine (12/20/13).

Even without hypertension, diabetes, or other metabolic issues, overweight and obese people have a higher risk of dying or having heart-related problems over ten years compared with normal weight people.

The new study was a meta-analysis of eight previous studies, each of which recorded participants’ body mass index (BMI) and metabolic status along with any cardiovascular events. Using participants’ BMI as an indicator, they found that excess weight increased the chance of having metabolic abnormalities.

As BMI rose, so too did the blood pressure and insulin resistance. In addition, levels of HDL cholesterol, believed to protect against heart attack and stroke, decreased as BMI increased.

“Sometimes the message changes when you look closer,” said Dr. Caroline Kramer of Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital. That is certainly true. Does the overweight person eat too much good whole food, or does he or she eat too much junk/fast/processed food? What kind of fat is it? Too many nutritious nuts or too much nutrient-deficient fast food? The report didn’t say.

What if the overweight person is active and gets sunshine/vitamin D  (just eats too much)? What if the participant in the study was inactive and didn’t get outdoors much? What is the difference between that person and the active person who eats too much?

The report didn’t say.

Still, the bottom line is….overweight and/or obesity is not a good thing for either health or appearance.

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