The Fat Grackle

Fat and health

The following are quotes from an article regarding health and fat.

Fat? Who Cares! Why Weight Doesn’t Matter

By Peter Jaret

“Overweight women who walked more than four hours a week had a significantly lower risk of heart disease than those who didn’t exercise. This says to me that the most important risk factor isn’t being fat; it’s being sedentary.”

“One important study, an analysis of more than 5,000 participants in a national government sample, showed that 35 percent of obese women don’t have the constellation of health problems typically linked to higher weight. Specifically, they showed no more than one sign of these issues: high blood pressure, high triglycerides, low HDL [“good”] cholesterol, elevated glucose levels, insulin resistance and systemic inflammation. And there are some health concerns, such as osteoporosis, that are much less common in people categorized as overweight or obese.”

"There’s something researchers call the “obesity paradox”—that people who are heavier tend to survive longer than thinner people with the same disease…Why isn’t entirely clear. But the findings call into question the widely held belief that being overweight or obese is always dangerous and suggest that it may be protective in some ways."


"When researchers at the German Institute of Human Nutrition in Potsdam-Rehbrücke looked at more than 12,000 middle-aged men and women for a study published in 2005, they found that obese men and women whose weight fluctuated over a two-year period were four times as likely to develop hypertension as the obese people whose weight remained stable. An earlier Italian study reported that women who had lost weight at least five times in five years were more likely to have high blood pressure than those whose weight remained stable."

"My colleagues and I did a study, reported in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, that confirms the usefulness of this approach. We randomly divided 78 obese chronic dieters, all female, into two groups: One followed a conventional weight-loss diet; the other enrolled in the Health at Every Size [HAES] plan, which emphasizes eating in response to hunger cues. Both programs lasted six months, and subjects were evaluated two years after the study’s beginning. By six months, 42 percent of the conventional-diet-program participants had dropped out, but only 8 percent of the HAES members had departed. The dieters did lose weight in the first six months, but two years later they had, on average, regained it all. Women in the HAES group did not lose or gain weight; they stayed the same weight throughout the two years. By the end of the study period, the HAES women showed significant improvements in their LDL [“bad”] cholesterol and systolic [the top number] blood pressure; the dieting group ended up where it had started. In addition, 53 percent of those following a diet reported feeling like failures; none of the HAES women did. So I think our message needs to encourage people to become healthy rather than focus on weight loss.”

"We need to resist the notion that being thin is the path to happiness. It isn’t. Trying to become thin can make people very unhappy. We’ve become so obsessed with weight that it’s a major revolution for people to say, “Hey, I can choose to see myself as attractive.” We’d all be much happier if we honored size diversity and focused on healthy choices, letting our weight fall naturally where it may."



Some more reading if you’re interested:

Genes take charge, and diets fall by the wayside
Obesity police busted? Study says fat folks can be healthy

Health at every size

Artificial sweeteners contributing directly to diabetes risk

“Obesity Paradox” #1

 - Sandy Szwarc, BSN, RN, CCP

imageSeveral studies this week have tried to explain what is being called the “obesity paradox:” the fact that most fat people actually live longer than thin people.

At this week’s meeting of the American Heart Association, yet another study was reported which found that fatter cardiac patients were more likely to survive hospitalization and invasive treatments than thinner ones, even when adjusting for age and other contributing factors. In this analysis of 130,139 heart disease patients, 5.4% of “normal” weight patients died, as compared to 2.4% of “obese” and 3.1% of “overweight.” Yes, those whose were “obese” were more than two times more likely to survive!

This is really only a “paradox” because it goes against what everyone believes to be true…largely because we don’t hear anything else.

While many may be incredulous, the largest body of evidence has found that fatness is not a risk factor for heart disease or premature death, even controlling for the effects of smoking. Ancel Keys and colleagues confirmed this nearly half a century ago upon examining 16 prospective studies in seven countries, as well as actual angiographic and autopsy examinations of 23,000 sets of coronary arteries which found no relationship between body fatness and the degree or progression of atherosclerotic build-up. And the most careful studies ever since have continued to support these findings.

Dr. Paul Ernsberger, of Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio, led a review of nearly 400 studies that was published in the Journal of Obesity and Weight Regulation in 1987 which corroborated these results. “The idea that fat strains the heart has no scientific basis,” he said. “As far as I can tell, the idea comes from diet books, not scientific books. Unfortunately, some doctors read diet books.”

This April, researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles reported their clinical study of 14,739 patients with coronary artery disease, that had been confirmed on tomography, who were followed for over three years. They found that “obese” and “overweight” patients were at significantly lower risks for cardiac death than “normal” weight patients.

The medical student presenting the paper at the AHA meeting tried to justify the “obesity paradox” in their study by claiming, with no apparent evidence, that the fatter patients had better outcomes because they may have received better and more aggressive treatment.

That hypothesis is unsupportable. It is well recognized among obesity researchers and doctors that obese people on the whole receive worse medical care, are denied or have less access to quality care, are treated less aggressively and are often sicker by the time they do get care than thinner people. The discrimination in health care has been well documented, as has very real weight bias even among health professionals specializing in obesity.

Look for another obesity paradox soon.

(from:http://junkfoodscience.blogspot.com/2006/11/obesity-paradox-1.html)

“Saying everybody needs to be the same weight is like saying all people  should be the same height.” —               Linda Bacon, PhD. (via National Geographic: Health at Every Size)

Photo:Artist Unknown (let me know if you know who the artist is.)

“Saying everybody needs to be the same weight is like saying all people should be the same height.” — Linda Bacon, PhD. (via National Geographic: Health at Every Size)

Photo:Artist Unknown (let me know if you know who the artist is.)

No matter what size you are now, changing that will not lead to true happiness. You have to find the happiness inside of yourself.


Picture:
The Carrot and the Chocolate by ~my-surrender
No matter what size you are now, changing that will not lead to true happiness. You have to find the happiness inside of yourself. Picture: The Carrot and the Chocolate by ~my-surrender
"In fact, studies show that prolonged weight loss is more often the  result of psychological work. In a two-year study conducted by nutrition  researchers at the University of California, Davis, behavior change and  self-acceptance were far more effective in achieving long-term health  improvements in obese women than America’s most lucrative scam:  dieting." - Courtney E. Martin - Read more: http://www.utne.com/2008-01-01/Politics/Love-Your-Fat-Self.aspx
Picture reblogged from this tumblr


"In fact, studies show that prolonged weight loss is more often the result of psychological work. In a two-year study conducted by nutrition researchers at the University of California, Davis, behavior change and self-acceptance were far more effective in achieving long-term health improvements in obese women than America’s most lucrative scam: dieting." - Courtney E. Martin
- Read more: http://www.utne.com/2008-01-01/Politics/Love-Your-Fat-Self.aspx

Picture reblogged from this tumblr

“"Many, if not most, high-profile obesity researchers are either consultants to the diet, food, or pharmaceutical industry, or conduct research for those industries. Many do both."
-Ellen Ruppel Shell, author of The Hungry Gene”