Obesity and being overweight is said to be unhealthy and dangerous. "Less eating more working out" is something overweight people hear over and over again.
Obese people might get evil looks when they eat a treat in public and are considered the next candidate for diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Recent studies show that this thesis is not true. Being overweight does not necessarily lead to hypertension, diabetes and an early death.
Every fourth overweight person neither has bad glucose, cholesterol nor blood fat values so the German spiegel.com reported recently.
Is there a difference between a healthy and an unhealthy overweight?
The mortality risk of people with a BMI of 25-30 and even 30-35 (obese) is smaller than the risk of normal-weight people with a BMI of 18.5 - 25.
This is the result of 97 long-term studies by the American National Institute of Health with 2.88 million male and female participants.
Read more about BMI and calorie trackers HERE
Increased muscle mass and decreased fat pads does not necessarily reduce your weight. But it is probably healthier.
Important factors the BMI does not take into account include: glucose levels and how and where the fat is stored.
Studies showed that around 25 % of people with a BMI of 30-40 have a healthy metabolism while 20 % of the normal-weight participants of the studies showed metabolic disorders.
The crucial factor is where the body stores the fat. If it is stored in the subcutaneous tissue it does not have an effect on the metabolism.
If too much fat is being stored in the belly, it gets problematic. This "visceral fat" wraps inner organs.
While visceral fat is visible via ultrasound you cannot see it from the outside.
A thin person might have fat wrapped around their inner organs.
Even more important for the distinction between healthy and unhealthy are fat deposits in the liver or other organs like heart and pancreas. These organs store the fat only for a short while until they release parts of it into the blood. Vascular deposits lead to arteriosclerosis.
Increased levels of excess fat stored in the liver influence the insulin metabolism. Insulin resistance is the main cause of diabetes type 2.
Researchers are of the opinion that hormones are responsible for deciding how and where the body stores fat.
Adiponectin plays a crucial role in fat burning. It has anti-inflammatory features and increases the amount of adipocytes (fat storages cells) in the subcutaneous tissue.
Read more about how hormones influence your weight HERE