Being overweight not necessarily linked to shorter life

According to the American Dietetic Association’s website, a person with a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered  overweight.

Being moderately overweight can actually increase a person’s chances of living longer, according to the results of a study reported on by Time and CNN Jan. 2.

2.88 million people from all over the world were analyzed for the study. Researchers concluded that people with a body mass index (BMI) between 25 and 30 had a better chance of living longer than people who have a BMI less than 25.

According to the American Dietetic Association’s website, a person with a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight, while a person with a BMI of 30 or above is considered obese.

The study was released at a time when approximately 33 percent of U.S. adults were listed as “clinically overweight” and 36 percent as obese, according to Time.

According to Time’s article, the study showed that people who are overweight but not obese had better chances of surviving medical emergencies because people who have a BMI less than 25 die from too much weight loss, while people who have a heavier BMI can afford to lose the weight.

On their website, the American Dietetic Association also explains that people with a higher BMI can also regain necessary weight after a serious illness than people who are “naturally thin.”

For some students, the results make sense.

“I think it’s interesting,” said UNA nursing student Katie Ennis. “I have heard that being slender most of your life can increase chances of heart disease in women.”

Katherine Flegal, the study’s lead author, explained to Time magazine that it was possible for overweight and obese people to get better medical attention because they are screened more frequently for health problems or show earlier signs of disease than people who are of normal body weight.

Some students, however, are skeptical of the study.

“I find these articles surprising; it’s not something I would have thought could be associated, but the article gives some valid points,” said UNA student Lucy Plummer. “I am interested to see what else comes out on this topic.”

The study, however, is not an excuse to keep some of the pounds on. The article and American Dietetic Association stress a balanced diet and physical activity to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

“One article is not enough information for me to go on,” Plummer said. “If I had a patient who wanted to keep the weight on, I would tell them that it is their choice to lose the weight and would encourage them to do more research on the topic as well.”