Being Overweight Increases Risk Of Death

People who are overweight have a significantly greater risk of early death from all causes, including heart disease and cancer, according to a long-term study of more than one million people in the US.  The odds are most dismal in the heaviest people, who are at least two times more likely to die early than slimmer folks, researchers report. People don't really appreciate that being overweight is deleterious to their health. The message just hasn't gotten out there.

Body Mass Index (BMI) is calculated by dividing the   A BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered normal, 25.0 to 29.9 is overweight, and 30 and above is obese. About one out of every five adults in the United States has a BMI of 30 or more. Death rates were lowest in people whose BMIs fell into a certain range, 23.5 to 24.9 in men and 22.0 and 23.4 in women. However, a somewhat larger range, 22.0 to 26.4 for men and 20.5 and 24.9 in women, fell into the low-risk group, according to the report.

The New England Journal of Medicine  October 7, 1999; 341:1097-1105, 1140-1141.

COMMENT: Some practical encouragement to seek an ideal body weight. Heller and Heller were on Oprah this week and will be on again tomorrow (Monday October 11). Apparently Oprah has embraced their approach. I am so glad she has learned the truth. She is a wonderful woman who has done so much to help people through the media. I am delighted that she has connected to the Hellers as her promotion of their work will go a long way toward finally popularizing it in our culture. I have used the Heller’s work successfully for nearly three years. So many of my patients were getting better that Dr. Heller called me last year to find out who I was as many of my patients were contacting him to thank him for their work. I still continue to find that they have the best mass-market book at this point. It is even more useful if one does not incorporate the reward meal.

A simple way to measure your body mass and ideal weight can be found at:

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