Do you jump to the conclusion that an overweight person playing golf cannot be in good physical shape? Before you respond, think about this: Studies show that being overweight does not necessarily mean being unfit or unhealthy.
How Good Is the BMI
The BMI is the most commonly employed method of evaluating if a person is at a healthy weight, superseding the old height and weight charts.
The same calculation is used for both males and females to determine if they’re underweight, healthy weight, or overweight, which is a ratio of height to weight.
For most people, the Body Mass Index serves as an accurate indication of their body fat percentage, if they are overweight, and potential health concerns. However, the BMI may not give an accurate picture for individuals with a lot of muscle, who are short in height, or are of an advanced age.
That is to say, someone measuring 5 feet 10 inches and weighing 220 pounds with 12% body fat would be seen as obese in accordance with BMI standards. Obviously, someone with 12% body fat is not obese.
How to Be Overweight and Healthy
It has been established by the National Institutes of Health’s 1998 report, Clinical Guidelines on the Identification, Evaluation and Treatment of Overweight and Obesity in Adults, that being overweight does not necessarily equate to a lack of health.
People who are overweight can be considered healthy if their waist size is less than 35 inches for women or 40 inches for men, and if they do not have two or more of the following conditions:
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar
- High cholesterol
The instructions state that those who are overweight should stay at the same weight, if not try to lose a couple of pounds. Factors other than health, including smoking, can decide whether an individual is considered fit.
The Risks Of Being Overweight
The research came as a shock in that there was no increased danger of passing away among those who are overweight (having BMI of 25-29.9). This implies that individuals with slightly higher weight but with usually healthy routines can be quite healthy. However, don’t rush off to the sweet shop right away. The results appear encouraging only if the other elements are satisfactory, including waist size, regular exercise, good eating habits, abstaining from smoking, and no major medical matters or history of long-term diseases in the family. Carrying excess weight can raise your chance of illnesses, particularly type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, and hypertension.
Being overweight is still accepted as a state of health that requires attention. The most effective way to protect your health is to maintain an active lifestyle and a balanced, nutritious diet.
Focus on Fitness
Essentially, it appears that your health and physical condition are more essential than your body weight, unless you are extraordinarily overweight.
Steven Blair, PED of the Cooper Institute in Dallas, is an example of an overweight person who is dedicated to fitness – he likes to describe himself as a short and stout individual who does some form of exercise on a regular basis. Blair reported that those who were overweight but still physically fit, as indicated by cardiovascular tests like stress tests, had mortality rates that were about 50% lower than those of people of average weight who were not in good physical condition.
The benefits of exercise go far beyond burning calories. Exercising regularly can be beneficial in reducing the risk of multiple medical issues including cardiovascular disease, diabetes of the second type, depression, some forms of malignancy and weak bones (osteoporosis).It can make you feel happier, make you feel better about yourself, decrease your worries, and make it easier to handle strain. Raising your physical condition generally brings about an extension in muscle mass, prompting your body to consume more calories continually.
The U.S. suggests that adults should engage in physical activity on a daily basis for a duration of 30-90 minutes, dependent on the desired outcome. It is suggested that all individuals aim for a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise daily; to prevent weight gain, doctors recommend 60 minutes; and if aiming to lose weight, 90 minutes is recommended. Critics worry that the very idea of finding an hour and a half a day for fitness is enough to make some folks throw in the towel. But fitness and weight loss results are highly individual. Something as simple as a30-minute walk each day may be enough to do the trick for some people.
At the WebMD Weight Loss Clinic, we advocate doing something physical each day. Start where you’re comfortable, and slowly build your fitness level. If you’re accustomed to sitting all day, taking 5- to 10-minute walks a few times a day is a great beginning. Remember that any exercise is better than nothing, and that you can break up your activity into increments that add up to 30 minutes daily. As you become increasingly fit, widen the duration or strength of your exercises to strengthen your fitness level.
What Is Considered Metabolically Healthy
A person’s wellbeing can be described as being free from any illness or harm. Metabolic well-being means the lack of metabolic issues including type 2 diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, lack of proper nutrition, and cardiovascular and metabolic illnesses.
According to the National Cholesterol Education Program, having three or more of the following risk factors puts a person at risk for metabolic disease:
- A level of blood glucose higher than 5.6 mmol/L (or 100 mg/dl) or the use of medication to treat high blood sugar.
- The ideal levels of HDL cholesterol in men should be below 1.0 mmol/L (40 mg/dL), and in women should be below 1.3 mmol/L (50 mg/dL). If someone has lower than this, they should start taking medication to increase their HDL cholesterol.
- Blood triglyceride levels that are higher than 1.7 millimoles per liter (150 milligrams per deciliter) or medication specifically to address high triglycerides.
- Men should have a waist circumference of more than 40 inches, while women should have a waist circumference of at least 35 inches.
- A blood pressure reading higher than 130/85 mmHg or the need for medication to manage high blood pressure.
READ MORE: The Complete Pro Metabolic Diet
What Is Considered Obese
The BMI can be calculated by taking an individual’s weight (in kilograms) and dividing it by their height (in meters) squared. BMI can be divided into four groups: too thin, the right weight, too heavy, and obese. Having a Body Mass Index (BMI) higher than 30 kg/m2 is seen as obesity.
Nevertheless, BMI is simply a calculation of body fatty tissue; it does not always precisely portray body makeup or sum of fat correctly. For example, a very strong athlete may have a BMI that indicates they are overweight or obese.
Someone who is physically inactive and has a higher percentage of fat on their body may be still considered to have a healthy weight according to their BMI. Checking waist size in addition to Body Mass Index could potentially be a more effective way to evaluate the possibility of acquiring metabolic illness.
Link Between Obesity and Metabolic Health
An excess of body fat can have an effect on the hormones in the body, however, obesity is not the only element that can have an effect on overall health. People of all sizes can have issues with their metabolic health.
In a 2019 article published in the journal Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders, it was determined that the rate of individuals in the U.S. with excellent metabolic health is very small.
Around 12.5% of Americans managed to maintain healthy levels of the five risk factors linked to metabolic illness without requiring medication.
It is often presumed that individuals who are overweight possess metabolic health problems, however, we assume that people who are thin do not. It has been observed that there is a higher prevalence of illness in those who are obese, but there are health risks that can be present in individuals regardless of weight.
Obesity-Related Health Problems
The CDC has pointed out that obesity may lead to more than 200 distinct illnesses.
The accumulation of superfluous body fat, especially around the gut area, is linked to poor insulin sensitivity, high insulin levels, and an inability to process glucose, all of which may contribute to type 2 diabetes.
People who are obese are more likely to have an abnormality in their lipids, with higher LDL (low-density lipoprotein, “bad” cholesterol) levels, lower HDL (high-density lipoprotein, “good” cholesterol) levels, or increased triglycerides, potentially leading to coronary heart disease.
Obesity is linked to a greater likelihood of having high blood pressure. Individuals who are overweight more commonly deal with gallbladder issues, sleeping disorders, and a number of types of cancer.
Getting Proper Treatment
Everyone should get a full metabolic check-up, consisting of a fasting blood sugar test, cholesterol test, liver function tests and more, in order to evaluate their metabolic condition.
Treatment is available to improve risk factors. Emphasizing healthy behaviors for individuals of all shapes and sizes could be beneficial in enhancing overall metabolic wellness.
Healthy lifestyle habits include:
Engaging in physical exercise can heighten one’s fitness level and consequently improve their overall health, regardless of the changes in weight. Furthermore, doing physical activity on a regular basis can reduce the amount of glucose in the blood and make the body more responsive to insulin, decrease blood pressure, reduce cholesterol, and increase energy. Recommendations for adults suggest that they should engage in either moderate-intensity or vigorous-intensity aerobic activity for 2.5 to 5 hours per week, and include muscle-strengthening exercises two or more days out of the week.
Get Proper Nutrition
Eating for optimal health does not involve necessarily limiting the number of calories consumed. Diets that primarily aim to reduce calorie intake may help one to shed a couple of pounds quickly, however maintaining these results in the long run can be difficult. It may be more advantageous to concentrate on incorporating nutrient-rich foods. A diet consisting largely of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, good fats, and lean proteins has been demonstrated to enhance overall health. Studies have proven the effectiveness of nutritional regimens like the Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet in cutting down the odds of diabetes, heart problems, and some kinds of cancer.
Get Good Sleep
Getting either insufficient sleep or rest that is excessive can have unfavorable effects on metabolic function. Making sure you get enough rest is a habit that can help decrease the likelihood of illnesses. The National Sleep Foundation has suggested that adults should recline for between 7-9 hours every night.
Warning should be taken with drinking any alcohol in moderate quantities. Drinking too much can cause serious adverse health effects, for example an elevated chance of heart disease and high blood pressure. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that adults abstain from drinking alcohol or, if they do drink, to only consume two beverages or less if male and one beverage or less if female per day. One drink is equal to a 12-ounce (oz) beer, 5-ounce glass of wine, or 1.5-ounce shot of hard liquor. Drinking up to two drinks per day (30 grams or less) may help reduce the risk of developing hypertension and diabetes, and could potentially raise HDL cholesterol levels. It’s not worth beginning drinking solely to experience the potential benefits it could bring.
At times, altering one’s way of life may not be enough to reduce the dangers connected to obesity. It may be necessary to take more drastic steps, like joining a weight control plan or having nutritional counsel with a certified nutrition specialist. Programs for maintaining weight usually take into account habits and provide guidance, along with other forms of emotional assistance. A registered dietitian evaluates dietary requirements and can assist with alterations to dietary practices and routines. Prescriptions of drugs and operative procedures are potential methods of dropping pounds and bettering metabolic health. Some medicines intended for obesity reduction have been proven to lead to up to a 15 percent reduction in weight for certain individuals.
Surgery aimed at achieving weight loss, typically called bariatric surgery, is typically performed in those people with a BMI greater than 40 or those who have serious health issues caused by obesity. Bariatric surgery has been proven to not just cut back the development of diabetes, dyslipidemia, and hypertension, but also enhance those medical issues if they were already present. There are different types of bariatric surgery. The methods employed affect the uptake of nutrients, decreasing the stomach’s capacity (which limits how much food can be eaten), or both. Bariatric surgery can lead to drastic weight loss for certain people, but since it is a significant medical procedure, there are potential risks and serious complications.
Everyone Is Unique
If all this confuses you, you’re not alone. Regularly emerging evidence shows the connection between nutrition, physical activity, controlling one’s weight, and general wellness.
The basic equation of “food consumed minus calories burned” constitutes the basis for handling one’s weight, though every individual has a different form or shape.
The rate at which calories are burned and exercise is done will affect a person’s ability to manage their weight. Incorporating genetics makes it difficult to create a single, successful solution for weight loss for everyone.
It is important to keep in mind that nutritious eating and consistent physical activity are beneficial to your overall health, even if they do not cause you to shed any pounds.
Decreasing body mass even a little can elevate your health and wellness without needing to have your BMI within the “average” spectrum. Dropping even a small amount of weight, such as 5-10%, has been associated with elevated cholesterol, glucose, and hypertension readings.
This should not be interpreted as support of having a larger body size, rather an acknowledgment that it is better to adopt healthier practices, especially when it comes to nutrition and physical activity, than being concerned with the readings of the scale.