Thursday, January 3, 2013

Is Being Overweight Healthy?

In a word....NO.

A researcher is making news for her findings – and some of it might not be the kind of news she would like to make.  Dr. K.  Flegal has completed a study that she says shows being somewhat overweight is better than being low weight.    Her study supports the present belief that obesity is related to heart disease, diabetes, some cancers and all-cause mortality, but challenges the belief that overweight does the same thing.  The problem with her study, some say, is that she is including people who are thin not because they are fit, but because they are unhealthy – having terminal illnesses and or being smokers.
Her work stands in stark contrast to most studies and in and of itself does not merit a reversal of public health recommendations.  It certainly is not an excuse for YOU to accept a weight that is high for yourself. 
Here I will requote Dr. Walter Willett – an epidemiologist with Harvard School of Public Health who was interviewed by Allison Aubrey.  Please see her article here.  These quotes come directly from her story:
"This study is really a pile of rubbish and no one should waste their time reading it," he says.
Also, he says the analysis doesn't address the bigger, more important issues of quality of life. If an overweight person does live longer — is he or she living with chronic diseases?
"We have a huge amount of other literature showing that people who gain weight or are overweight, have increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, stroke, many cancers and many other conditions," Willett says.

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