Can you really be both fat and fit?
We’ve had this discussion a few times — and we’re about to have it again. Because it’s at the epicenter of an ongoing saga in the medical community. And, well… I have some strong opinions about it.
The answer is obvious to me. But it’s always good to have science on your side. And it just so happens that I recently came across a long-term study that proves my point, once and for all.
Obesity triples the risk of heart attack
The participants in this study were between 20 and 54 years old. And roughly half of them were women. Researchers divided them into four categories.
Subjects were divided into 4 categories:
- Low activity – Light exercise, like walking or gardening, for less than 4 hours a week
- Moderate activity – Light exercise, list jogging or power walking, for at least four hours a week
- High activity – Heavier exercise, like running or biking, for at least four hours weekly
- Vigorous activity – Competitive athletes (like marathon runners, body builders, etc.)
As you can imagine, the physical activity certainly provided health benefits. Researchers adjusted for a host of factors like age, BMI, and smoking habits. Then they compared heart attack risk among each group. Compared to the low activity group:
- Moderate activity subjects were 13 percent less likely to have a heart attack
- High activity subjects were 12 percent less likely to have a heart attack
- Vigorous exercisers were 37 percent less likely to have a heart attack
But ultimately, weight was a much bigger factor. And even after adjusting for all the usual factors including physical activity, being overweight still increased heart attack risk by 154 percent. And being obese nearly tripled the risk.
Granted, this study only looked at one health outcome—myocardial infarction. And despite the fact that it didn’t look at the effects of weight and activity on cancer or diabetes, I can practically guarantee the outcome would have been much, much worse.
Cultural shifts can’t change the facts
Although I’ve always been very clear on this issue, the so-called “experts” have long debated what really makes obesity so lethal — whether it’s the inactivity, the extra fat, or other factors, like inflammation.
Sure, it’d definitely be nice to know every last underlying cause. But quite honestly, what difference does it make? It doesn’t change the solution—which is diet and exercise. And it doesn’t change how important it is to pay attention to your entire body, from the inside-out.
In fact, I talk all about how you can lose weight, eat right, and take preventative measures in protecting yourself from chronic disease. You can find it all in my latest book, The A-List Diet.
And it’s about time we actually started focusing on those solutions instead of normalizing the problem. There’s plenty of evidence exposing obesity — and ultimately, sugar — as the root cause of most chronic disease in this country.
It doesn’t matter how you frame it, poor habits and excess weight are sending Americans to an early grave every day.
And that’s why I have issues with overweight “role models” on TV, in the movies, and elsewhere. As I’ve said here before, shaming obese people definitely isn’t the answer. But I can’t just sit back and simply accept it when clearly someone is leading an unhealthy lifestyle or abandoning their underlying health issues.
Standards for health and beauty keep evolving. But cultural shifts can’t — and should never — change the facts. And now, more than ever, it’s vital that we hold on to the truth: Sugar kills — and fat is not and never will be “fit.”
P.S. In addition to my A-List Diet Book (now available in paperback), I’ve also created a drug-free plan for preventing and reversing metabolic syndrome, as well as type 2 diabetes, and prediabetes. It’s called the Metabolic Repair Protocol, and you can learn more about it by clicking here.