It’s important to be happy with who you are, but it’s also important to be healthy. Over the last 15 years these lines have been blurred more and more, but new research has put things into sharp relief. Depressingly there may be no such thing as happy fat (Although I can personally confirm there is such thing as relationship fat. I caught that one hard.)
A study published yesterday (August 8th) in Cell Reports has provided further evidence against a “healthy obese weight”. The study focused on white fat tissue of obese individuals who were classified as either metabolically healthy or unhealthy. What was found that the tissue was near identical with abnormal changes in gene expression in response to insulin stimulation.
Obesity is now considered a global epidemic, with around 1 in 3 people considered obese (this isn’t just the USA either, New Zealand has similiar rates).
The findings suggest that vigorous health interventions may be necessary for all obese individuals, even those previously considered to be metabolically healthy.
“The findings suggest that vigorous health interventions may be necessary for all obese individuals, even those previously considered to be metabolically healthy,” says first author Mikael Rydén of the Karolinska Institutet to Sciencedaily. “Since obesity is the major driver altering gene expression in fat tissue, we should continue to focus on preventing obesity.”
Recently it was estimated that 30% of obese people were in fact “metabolically healthy” and were less likely to have any sort of health complications due to weight. According to Sciencedaily “A hallmark of metabolically healthy obesity is high sensitivity to the hormone insulin, which promotes the uptake of blood glucose into cells to be used for energy.”
This new data means that this assumption may be wrong. Now no line for what marks “healthy obesity” exists.
“Insulin-sensitive obese individuals may not be as metabolically healthy as previously believed,” Rydén of the Karolinska Institutet says. “Therefore, more vigorous interventions may be necessary in these individuals to prevent cardiovascular and metabolic complications.”