Most people believe that it is unhealthy to be fat. Sadly, the significant research challenging this "fact" is largely ignored.
There is much prejudice around fatness, making researchers and professionals alike highly biased. And bias can impact how research is carried out and interpreted. Are you ready to challenge mainstream thinking about weight? Following is just a handful of available research that challenges dominant thinking about weight and health. And, resources at the bottom of this page.
Fat Is Not the Problem—Fat Stigma Is - “Health experts” are sending incorrect and destructive messages about the relationship between weight and wellness, and this does far greater damage to public health than fat tissue itself.
Weight Loss in Overweight Patients with Type 2 Diabetes - Long term weight loss did not reduce the chances of death or complications such as cardiovascular disease during the succeeding 13 years.
Obesity Won't Affect Joint Surgery Safety: Study - Heavy patients needed fewer blood transfusions, did not have more complications.
Overweight Who Lose Weight Have Increased Risk of Death - Weight loss of 15% or more associated with increased risk of death among overweight. (You can see how the research is NOT as clear cut as the media and our doctors report!)
Why is Weight Regained? - Study shows how food restriction is rarely effective, doesn’t reliably improve health and does more harm than good. The root of the problem is not willpower but neuroscience. (Looks at the TV program The Biggest Loser.)
Metabolic Adaptations with Weight Loss - These adaptations continued even 6 years later - participants were still burning 500 calories less each day!
Overweight Have Lower Risk of Death than Normal Weight - The study also found that increased risk of death occurred in the extremely obese, which is only 8 percent of Americans, and that being very thin caused a slight increase in the risk of death. This research, from the National Cancer Institute and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is considered by many to be the most rigorous yet on the effects of weight.
Lowest Risk of Death in Overweight - Subjects at BMI of 27 healthier than those at lower BMI of 23.7. (For instance, a 5'8" person would be healthy at 180 pounds.)
Defying Conventional Wisdom - Excess fat is not, by itself, a serious health risk for the vast majority of people who are overweight or obese. Recommendations to cut calories and lose weight may do more harm than good in overweight or mildly obese individuals.
Decreased Risk of Death in Overweight - This 12 year study of BMI and mortality in 11,326 adult Canadians showed increased risk of death in the thin (BMI <18.5) and 'obese' (BMI >35). However, there was a decreased risk of death for the overweight (BMI 25 to <30). Researchers stated, "Overweight appears to be protective against mortality." 6/09
Overweight Lower Risk of Death - Eleven year study of BMI and mortality in 26,747 Japanese. The underweight group had higher risk of mortality, even among those with a lower normal BMI range. Lowest risk occurred at BMI between 20.0 and 29.9. 6/09
The Obesity Paradox - Researchers show that "...obesity appears to be protective in a number of cardiovascular disorders...", but continue to recommend weight loss. 5/09
Is Fatness to Blame? - In this New York Times article, "Losing the Weight Stigma." 10/08
Research that Overweight Live Longer - It looks like a BMI of 25 to 30, the so-called overweight range, may be the optimal range. 11/07 ....but the experts refuse to believe it.
Obesity is Unhealthy Claims Challenged - Is body weight really a barometer of health? It turns out…..not a very good one. International Journal of Epidemiology (IJE), 2006
Obesity Officials Funded by Weight Loss Industry - World Health Organization "independent" obesity stays afloat with "millions" from weight loss drug industry. Original article in British Medical Journal. 6/06
400, 000 Deaths Grossly Exaggerated - CDC needs to disclose how flawed research was cleared within the agency. 5/05
CDC Experts Reveal Truth - The CDC admits that excess weight is about one-fifteenth as dangerous as previously thought, CDC must retract obesity deaths study. 5/05
Obesity: An Overblown Epidemic? - An increasing number of scholars have begun accusing obesity experts, public health officials and the media of exaggerating the health effects of overweight and obesity. 5/05
CDC Study Exposed - Obesity causes 400,000 deaths annually, right? In little more than a year, the CDC's much-touted study has come unraveled. Here is a timeline of the study's incremental demise. 4/05
Fatness Not Necessarily Unhealthy, But Thinness Can Be - After decades of dire warnings to lose weight, it turns out that a modest amount of "excess" weight may be good for you! And being too thin is dangerous. See CDC: Save Our Statistics, They're Sinking Fast - informative article with links, and You Can Be Too Thin Afterall - a NYTimes editorial. 4/05
Life Expectancy: Another Obesity Myth Debunked - Experts say that kids are getting so fat that they will not live as long as their parents. Obesity scaremongers have repeated this in countless articles, editorials, and even Congressional testimony - all without so much as a shred of credible research to back it up. This "deeply flawed study" was in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). 3/05
CDC Study Overstated Obesity as Cause of Death - Apparently the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention overstated the number of obesity-related deaths. 11/04
CDC Must Retract Obesity Deaths Study - Just a year after its extremely controversial announcement that excess weight kills 400,000 American each year, the agency is rumbling, bumbling, stumbling toward an explanation for the new results that says the real figure is just 26,000. 4/04
Obesity Not Necessarily a Risk Factor - A “fat” body cannot possibly be fit and healthy, right? Wrong, see this report on the scientific evidence that challenges these views.
The Fat Epidemic is An Illusion - Contrary to popular opinion, national data do not show Americans growing uniformly fatter. Instead statistics demonstrate clearly that while the very fat are getting fatter, thinner people have remained pretty much the same. 6/04
Public Enemy Number One: Tobacco or Obesity? - The evidence on tobacco is well tested, but " the new numbers on obesity are weak--or as one critic in CDC says, "loosey-goosey."" CDC authors use inconsistent methods for calculating relative risks associated with tobacco and bad diet. Several epidemiologists at CDC and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) echoed these concerns but declined to speak on the record. "I don't want to lose my job," said one CDC staffer who does research in this area. Science, 5/04
"Obesity" Expert Calls for Nationwide Effort to Diet - Obesity researcher Xavier Pi-Sunyer makes claims that others call ludicrous.
Women Get Heavier, and Healthier, as they Age - Women are getting healthier at the same time they’re getting heavier. Yet more proof that experts fighting obesity are not seeing things clearly. 5/00
Big Fat Lies: The Truth About Your Weight and Your Health by Glenn Gaesser
The Diet Myth: Why America's Obsessions with Weight is Hazardous to Your Health by Paul Campos
Fat Politics: The Real Story Behind the Obesity Epidemic by J. Eric Oliver
Health At Every Size: The Truth About Your Weight by Linda Bacon.
Big Fat Facts - Get the facts, good summary, plus excellent blog.
Read more: http://nourishingconnections.com/obesity_myths_debunked.html#ixzz4otPg6UN5