13 Reasons Losing Weight Could Save Your Life

Adding pounds can increase your risk for COVID-19—and worse.

By Bradley Daves | April 27, 2020

You don't want to hear about weight loss during an epidemic, but you do hear it: Doctors have discovered that a large number of COVID-19 patients are overweight or obese - especially those who live a lifetime. Pose a threat. "People with obesity often die three times more often," says Mark Hyman.

Obesity is associated with serious health problems that actually go from head to toe, ranging from heart disease and cancer to liver, kidney, stomach, and joint problems - which can reduce your happiness and shorten your life. Here's how extra pounds ruin your health. Share this with anyone who needs to hear it.


You'll Be Less Susceptible to Coronavirus Complications


As previously indicated, the CDC says it has a high risk of coronavirus complications: "People with severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] 40 or higher)". And if you add a few extra pounds, there is also a risk that you will get the virus at all, because your body works hard and is full of visceral fat - the dangerous fat around your abdomen. Instead, you want to focus on strengthening your immune system and fighting Covid-19 if you are aware of it.

The Rx: Enjoy your self-separation with some food and wine. I'm not a buzzer. But it includes healthy foods - high in protein, fiber and healthy fats - and limit your alcohol to a glass of red wine (two for men). And exercise at least 30 minutes a day.

RELATED: Discover exactly how registered dietitian Ilana Muhlstein lost 100 pounds and kept it off in You Can Drop It!


You'll Decrease Your Risk Of Heart Disease

Overweight woman having a heart attack while touching her chest

Obesity is associated with high blood cholesterol and high blood sugar - two major risk factors for heart attack and stroke.

The Rx: Losing just 5 to 10 percent of your weight reduces the risk of heart disease, according to the National Institutes of Health. It can improve your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood flow.

RELATED: 36 Warning Signs Your Heart Sends You


You'll Reduce Your High Blood Pressure

Doctor Measuring Patients Blood Pressure With Stethoscope

Excess weight also makes your heart work harder to pump blood around your body. This high blood pressure, i.e. high blood pressure, can be a risk factor for heart disease.

The Rx: Have you checked your blood pressure regularly? The typical value is 120/80. If your blood pressure is low, follow your doctor's recommendations about diet and lifestyle changes (and medication adherence) to keep the numbers in a healthy range.


You'll Decrease Your Risk Of Cancer

woman in bed suffering from cancer

According to the American Cancer Society, obesity increases the risk of many cancers, including breast, colon, uterine, gallbladder and kidney cancers. About 28,000 cases of obesity cancer occur each year. Why can't researchers be sure? This may be due to inflammation, changing cell metabolism, unhealthy diet, and a sedentary lifestyle that is associated with weight gain or a combination of all four factors.

The Rx: A study on whether weight loss reduces the risk of cancer is inconclusive. Therefore, it is best to maintain a healthy weight and avoid gaining weight..

RELATED: 30 Surprising Things That Affect Whether You May Get Cancer


You'll Decrease Your Risk of Stroke

Female middle aged doctor discussing with her senior stroke patient ct-scan images of her brain

Being overweight raises your blood pressure, which is the most common cause of stroke. Heart disease, high blood sugar and high cholesterol - all this happens with extra pounds - also increase the risk of stroke.

The Rx: To keep all your numbers in the right place, lose weight with a healthy diet, and constant exercise.


You'll Sleep So Much Better

Overweight Woman Asleep In Bed Snoring

NIH states that weight loss is the 1st risk factor for sleep apnea. Excess pounds often lead to excess fat and swelling in the throat, which can block your airways, causing an obstructive condition: at night, you sneeze and can actually hold your breath for a minute. I. This increases the risk of many serious health problems, including heart disease.

The Rx: Stay on a healthy weight so you can breathe easily. If you snail for a long time regardless of your weight - ask your doctor if you should take more tests for sleep apnea.

RELATED: 40 Surprising Facts You Didn't Know About Your Sleep


You'll Decrease Your Risk Of Diabetes

Midsection of young woman using glucometer to check blood sugar level at home

According to the NIH, more than 87% of adults with diabetes are overweight or obese. Fat can make your body more resistant to insulin, which carries blood sugar from the blood to your cells for blood circulation. When your body is immune to insulin, blood sugar stays, resulting in type-2 diabetes. This high blood sugar damages the arterial walls and can lead to heart attacks, strokes, vision problems and more.

The Rx: If you are carrying extra pounds, be sure to monitor for diabetes. If you are diagnosed, follow your doctor's instructions regarding diet and lifestyle changes and any medications to control diabetes.


You'll Take Stress Off Your Joints

Overweight woman suffering from knee pain stepping on stairs

Excess pounds tax bones and joints, which can lead to conditions such as osteoarthritis. "Overweight becomes an engineering problem,"  David Gibson, MD, a Medicine orthopedic surgeon at Yale Medicine. "Your bones are designed for your ideal body weight. Each extra pound increases the amount of force on your joints. For example, for every pound of weight you can put on your torso, you can move your knees. 8 pounds of pressure. "This extra load will eventually affect your joints, causing initial failure."

The Rx: Reduces daily aches and pains and te reduces the risk of osteoarthritis.


Your Liver Will Thank You

doctors appointment physician shows to patient shape of liver with focus on hand with organ

When you are overweight, fat is produced in the liver, which can lead to fatty liver disease, such as nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Fatty liver disease, including cirrhosis or liver failure, can cause serious damage to the liver. And according to Harvard Medical School, belly fat releases harmful substances directly into the liver, which can increase the level of fat in your blood.

The Rx: Have a regular physical exam. Your doctor may test you for fatty liver disease - which often produces few or no symptoms with a simple blood test. Losing body fat means you will lose fat in your liver. Due to being overweight, your kidneys become stressed, making it difficult for the body to detoxify. And it increases your risk of diabetes and high blood pressure, two of the most common causes of chronic kidney disease (CKD). When the kidneys cannot filter blood properly, waste builds up in the body. This can lead to kidney failure and the need for dialysis.


Your Kidneys Will Thank You

dialysis system patient hospital

Being overweight stresses your kidneys, making their job of detoxifying the body harder. And it increases your risk of diabetes and high blood pressure, which are the two most common causes of chronic kidney disease (CKD). When the kidneys can't filter the blood properly, wastes build up in the body. That can lead to kidney failure and the need for dialysis.

The Rx: CKD is progressive - it can be slow but not usually reversible. To keep your kidneys healthy, keep your weight in the healthy range.


You'll Speed Up Your Metabolism

Plus size woman performing lunges with dumbbell in gym

Abdominal fat, a.k.a intestinal fat, is fat that wraps around your organs. It releases substances that slow down your metabolism. So the more weight you gain, the harder it can be to lose, and the more pounds you can gain.

The Rx: Reach and stay a healthy weight through diet and exercise, so it is not difficult to do so in the future. Harvard Medical School recommends daily (and ideally 60) moderate-intensity exercise as a starting point for weight loss, supplemented with strength training that supports lean muscle fat burning. Will create


You'll Reduce Stomach Problems

Man with large stomach

Excess pounds not only give you belly fat - it can also upset your stomach. According to the Obesity Action Coalition, being overweight is associated with stomach problems such as gastritis, heartburn, bloating, bloating, and diarrhea, and research is increasingly linking it to gastric ulcers. Being overweight increases intestinal inflammation weakens healthy intestinal bacteria and enables “lychee intestines,” in which toxins and pathogens invade the digestive system.

The Rx: Lose weight to improve abdominal health. If you are experiencing digestive problems, see your doctor see what remedies can help in the meantime.

RELATED: Sign up for our newsletter to get daily recipes and food news in your inbox!


You Could Live a Longer, Happier Life

happy woman laughing

Here’s the bottom line: extra pounds are associated with shorter lifespans. Obesity was associated with a 27 percent higher risk of death, according to the 24-year-old Framingham Heart Study from Boston University. And in 2018, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and Boston University School of Public Health found that obesity had pushed life expectancy in the United States by almost a year.

The Rx: Don't accept extra pounds in general. For optimal health and happy life, maintain a healthy weight.

And to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don't miss these 100 Things You Should Never Do During the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Matthew Diggity : Takes the conclusions of some research at face value without taking the implications to the next level. For example the recommendation of fish for one purpose but without sufficient consideration of other factors taking into consideration ocean pollution.
Samantha Crawford : To be honest, when I first see this article I was both overwhelmed and a bit disappointed. My first reaction was "there is too much to read, I just want a article that quickly states what I should eat for what I want to heal." I put the book away for a couple days--but then I started looking through it and actually reading it! My attitude immediately changed. While this article has a lot of pages and looks more scholarly than I was hoping for--the author has written it in a way that is easily understandable, interesting, and most important helpful! I felt embarrassed that my first response to the article was that it had too many pages and that I didn't want to read so much.
Matthew Diggity : This article made me feel like I can actually EAT again. Doesn't give you a list of 100 foods you can't eat and doesn't feel like a fad diet (and not a diet at all). I also loved that the author gives you access to all his research - so you can look it up for yourself (probably won't, because I trust this dude). Really excited to help heal my gut with this article!