Obesity in a healthy manner

The Toronto-based study has concluded that provided you are healthy, your obese state does not expose you to an increased risk of death. This conflicts with vital studies done in Europe.

How the study was done

In order to carry out this study, the researchers examined 54,089 participants of both genders, all obtained from five cohort studies through 2017. The York University’s Faculty of Health researchers compared the otherwise healthy participants to those who had elevated lipids, blood pressure or glucose, or other metabolic factors such as ethnicity, lifestyle, smoking status and age.

Finding of this study was published in the journal Clinical Obesity.

The study lead author, Dr. Jennifer Kuk, said that their findings contrasted with most literature. “We think it’s because the definition of metabolic healthy obesity by most studies has been limited to only one metabolic risk factor.”

Clearly, this is problematic in the sense that hypertension on its own exposes you to high risks of death yet the past studies have referred to patients with obesity and hypertension as being “healthy.” That probably explains why these studies found the “healthy” obesity individuals to be at a higher risk of death.

An almost similar study was published in March covering 296,535 participants of white European origin. It indicated that the risk of heart attacks, high blood pressure and strokes went up as your body mass index increased past 22-23 kg/m.

The Canada-based study indicated that diabetes, hypertension or dyslipidemia can be associated with risk to high mortality rate, but obesity alone is not well captured in this situation.

You need to lose weight

Any person who has more than 30 kg/m is supposed to undergo a weight-loss program. This is according to weight management guidelines.

“We’re showing that individuals with metabolically healthy obesity are actually not at an elevated mortality rate,” said Kuk, adding that “A person with normal weight had the same risk of death from other metabolic factors just as a person with obesity and no other risk factor.”

This implies that metabolically healthy people can only be advised to lose weight when it has been established the amount of benefit they will receive.

Professor of Medicine, Leslie, said that the relationship between one’s body size and health is constantly focused on more than your bathroom scale. “It is important to change the tone to what you are made of instead of just how much you weigh.”