Scientists have found that an obese person has the same chances of living long as a person of normal weight. Explanations.
Researchers at York University (England) have shown that patients with obesity do not have an increased mortality rate, unlike those who suffer from dyslipidemia, hypertension or diabetes. A discovery that "contrasts with the current scientific literature, which immediately considers that obese people are necessarily in poor health," says lead author Jennifer Kuk.
The team analyzed the medical records of 54,089 obese individuals, men and women combined. Some also had other problems, such as blood pressure or diabetes, but, and this is important, it was not systematic. Within this cohort, one in 20 obese individuals had no metabolic abnormalities other than their overweight.
The same chances of living a long time
In addition, scientists have found that a person of normal weight with no other metabolic risk factor is just as likely to die as the obese person with no other risk factor. In other words, an obese person has the same chances of living for a long time as a person of normal weight.
"We show that people whose obesity is metabolically healthy do not have a high mortality rate," say the scientists. "This means that hundreds of thousands of people in North America with metabolically healthy obesity are receiving a medical injunction to lose weight, while they will not benefit from it in terms of life expectancy."
49% of Americans over the age of 20 are looking to lose weight
Current weight management recommendations suggest that anyone with a BMI greater than 30 should lose weight. As a result, and according to a new major public health survey released last Thursday, 49% of Americans over the age of 20 reported trying to lose weight in the last 12 months, including 42% of men and 56% of women. In the 40-59 age group, nearly six in ten women say they are looking to lose weight.
40% of the US population was estimated obese in 2015-2016. This proportion rises to more than 70% if we include overweight people (BMI greater than 25). In France, 6.5 million people are considered obese (14.5% of the adult population).
The proportion of obese people increased from 8.5% to 14.5% between 1997 and 2009. The increase in prevalence is observed in all age groups of the population, including seniors. However, this seems to be more important for women (15.1%) than for men (13.9%).