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Weight and Longevity

June 19, 2009

A new study suggests that while obesity does on average shorten one’s lifespan, extreme thinness has a similar–or worse–effect.

People who are a little overweight at age 40 live six to seven years longer than very thin people, whose average life expectancy was shorter by some five years than that of obese people, the study found.

This adds to a growing body of literature that suggests that our OMGDeathFat! obsession is more about aesthetics than heath. According to the scientists who conducted the study, the main factors that contribute to a decreased life expectancy for thin people include susceptibility to disease and fragile blood vessels. They even suggest that thin people attempt to gain a little weight as a precaution against these risk factors.

Just further proof that although thin can be and sometimes is healthy, the equation thin=healthy is exclusionary and often false.

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