Have you ever heard of the obesity paradox? No?
I’ll explain what it is.
It is a theory that fat has a protective effect against some serious diseases , a theory supported on the basis of some studies that in the past years have pointed out that overweight and obese (but not severely obese) people had life expectancies longer than those underweight.
From these studies, the cardiologist Carl J. Lavie and the scholar Kristin Loberg, co-author of bestsellers on the topic of nutrition, had talked about obesity paradox , or obesity paradox.
Those who are fatter but in good health would live better and longer than those who are underweight.
And what do we do with the definition of obesity as a disease?
Here, a new study, on a very large sample of people (almost three hundred thousand), conducted for four years plus a window of further five years of analysis and confirmation of the data, has instead led to conflicting results , for which the paradox of obesity would not exist .
The problem, the experts explain, is that in previous studies a correlation was made between body mass index and disease frequency .
But the body mass index only indicates the ratio of weight to height, and does not reveal the distribution of body fat .
Combining this new data, and in particular by measuring the waistline of the study participants, the researchers at the University of Glasgow, who conducted the Biobank study, found themselves with results opposite to those highlighted in the theory of “protective fat”.
Those who weigh over a BMI of 23 and have a wider waistline have a higher risk of disease than those with less abdominal fat and less body weight (or same body weight).