We see it everywhere--that Facebook post about a healthy overweight person, that Instagram picture of somebody huge, per se, doing yoga and what not. "Fat but fit", today's famous adage says. But boy, were we so wrong.
Alright, just don't get me wrong too, okay? I'm all for body positivity. But this time, let's lean a little bit on science. Is there really such a thing as healthy overweights?
Well, a study of Ioanna Tzoulaki, of Imperial College London, and colleagues compared the data of more than half a million people in Europe. And of that number, 7,600 experienced coronary heart disease incidents, including heart attacks.
They separated the participants based from each person's BMI (body mass index) and whether they were metabolically “healthy” or “unhealthy”. This is calculated by measuring different metabolic markers like high blood pressure, high blood sugar, low levels of “good” cholesterol, or a large waist circumference.
With this, they found that generally, those unhealthy people--regardless of their weight--had a double risk of having coronary heart disease compared to healthy people of a normal weight.
Moreover, those overweight healthy people were also found to be 26 per cent more likely to develop coronary heart disease, increasing to 28 per cent when obese. This means that even when one has healthy blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels, if overweight or obese, one still has a higher susceptibility to having a heart disease.
Get weekly science updates in your inbox!