We all know that person who can eat whatever they want, yet put on no weight at all. Is it possible that these people can still be unhealthy? In short, the answer to this is yes.
Certain factors need to be taken in to account when determining your health including: where you store your body fat, how much exercise you do and your family history of medical conditions. ‘Normal-weight obesity’ is a term which can be used for people who have a BMI in the healthy range, but have abnormal health indicators associated with higher BMI’s. Such indicators include: insulin resistance (an indicator of type 2 diabetes), high blood pressure and cholesterol.
We do need some body fat to be healthy, in fact being underweight can be a health risk too. People with ‘normal-weight obesity’ can also have a higher than normal proportion of body fat. Where you store your fat can have an effect on your health. The fat just under your skin known as ‘subcutaneous fat’ isn’t as bad for us as visceral fat, which is stored deeper inside our belly and surrounds our organs. High amounts of this visceral fat can be associated with health problems like insulin resistance and cardiovascular disease.
Your risk of abnormal health indicators is also higher if you have a family history of heart disease or type 2 diabetes. This applies even if you are within the healthy weight range and regularly monitor your cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugars.
Research shows that exercising regularly and following a healthy diet is important in decreasing the amount of visceral fat you have, even if there are no changes in your overall weight or BMI.