Researchers have long known that excess weight doesn't affect everyone the same way. Obesity is defined as having a body mass index of 30 or over, a measure that includes height and weight but not other related measures like the ratio of muscle mass to fat. At the population-wide level, BMIs over 30 are associated with numerous health problems, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. But the measurement is less sensitive when it comes to predicting individual health.
Starting in the 1960s, researchers noted that some obese individuals didn't have the hallmarks of weight-related illnesses. Some had normal blood cholesterol and normal insulin sensitivity, meaning they lacked risk factors for heart disease and diabetes.
Link to full article: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39466130/ns/health-diet_and_nutrition/
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