Obesity can take 8 years off your life

A new study has revealed that being severely obese can knock up to eight years off your life and cause decades of ill health.

The study showed that being obese at a young age is more damaging to health and life expectancy.

The study

According to BBC news, the team at McGill University in Canada, reported that high rates of obesity are linked to both heart issues and type-2 diabetes, which in turn, are major sources of disability and death. Experts said people were frequently “ignorant” of the consequences of obesity.

The report, published in the Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology, used a computer model to look at the risks and calculate the impact of weight gain on life expectancy.

In comparison with 20 to 39-year-olds with a healthy weight, severely obese men of the same age lost 8,4 years of life and women lost 6,1.

However, men spent 18,8 more years living in poor health while women spent 19,1 in a similar ill state state.

Moving up an age group to those in the forties and fifties, men lost 3,7 years and women 5,3 years to obesity.

Men and women in their sixties and seventies lost just one year of life to obesity, but still faced seven years of ill health, the study reported.

Prof Steven Grover told BBC news: “Our computer modelling study shows that obesity is associated with an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, and diabetes that will, on average, dramatically reduce an individual’s life expectancy.”

He adds: “The pattern is clear. The more an individual weighs and the younger their age, the greater the effect on their health, as they have many years ahead of them during which the increased health risks associated with obesity can negatively impact their lives.”

Responding to the findings, Barbara Dinsdale, lifestyle manager for the charity Heart Research UK, asked: “How many more wake-up calls do we need?

This study yet again supports the message that by becoming obese you not only take years off your life, but also life off your years in terms of experiencing more years in poor health rather than enjoying a happy, active and productive life, she added.