One of the most contentious questions asked in the health community today is whether you can be overweight and healthy.
This question – sometimes framed using the term “fat but fit” – has preoccupied medical researchers for decades, fuelling numerous studies both supporting and debunking the concept. Natural Fat Burning Pills Women’S Health
The debate revolves around whether a physically active overweight or obese person can still be considered metabolically healthy – that is, they have good blood pressure, cholesterol and insulin levels.
As a health professional and obesity expert, my response to this question often surprises: I believe a person can indeed be overweight and healthy. Here’s why.
1. Weight and health are not perfectly correlated
As I discussed in my article on the Body Mass Index (BMI), a person’s weight doesn’t always tell the full story of their health.
Read more: Using BMI to measure your health is nonsense. Here’s why
While being overweight increases an individual’s risk of a range of health issues, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and some cancers, many studies have shown a person’s disease risk is linked not to weight, but to body fat and where it’s distributed in the body. Easy Ways To Fat Loss Pills For Women
While BMI calculators provide a starting point for assessing body fat, the BMI is not an accurate measure of health because it doesn’t explain where fat is distributed in the body.
People with a high amount of visceral fat – a type of especially unhealthy fat stored around the stomach, close to the organs – have a higher risk of disease than people who hold body fat around their hips.
Woman in workout gear
If you are physically fit and don’t have a high amount of visceral fat, your weight category might be less important. Shutterstock
It’s also important to remember muscle is much denser than fat – another thing the BMI can’t measure.
Therefore, if a BMI calculator classifies you as overweight or obese, but you’re physically fit, have a healthy diet and lifestyle, and fat stored around your hips, you could be healthier than someone with a BMI in the “normal” range if they don’t exercise or eat a balanced diet. 2 Best Fat Burning Pills For Women That Work