23 January 2013


Bad news for those who are fat ~ "if you are overweight, your chances of dying in a car accident are greatly increased, according to a new study.  It found that heavier people are up to  80% more likely to die in an accident than drivers of a healthy weight, with obese women most at risk.

"The research, published in the Emergency Medicine Journal, found that fat people are propelled further forward during a collision because their additional soft tissue prevents the seat belt tightening immediately against their pelvic bones.

"The study, which took place in the U.S., included 6,806 drivers involved in 3,403 collisions, of whom 18% were classified as obese, 33% were overweight, and 46% had a healthy weight.  Its findings show those who are most obese, with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or over, were 80% more likely to die in an accident than drivers of a healthy weight."

By now most people are aware that fully one-third of the American public (including children) are obese, and another one-third are seriously overweight.  If you have any doubt, or if you've been in denial, check out this height-weight chart.  Just look in your gender column, and find the row corresponding to your height.  Where they intersect is your acceptable weight range.  Note that generally speaking, the lower your weight is within that range, the better your overall fitness, assuming you eat well and exercise regularly.

The increased risk of death in an auto accident is only one entry in the list of dangers from obesity, joining increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, asthma, infertility, osteoarthritis, gout, liver disease, multiple sclerosis, back strain, and a medical laundry list of other conditions.  Obesity is not only preventable, it is also a drain on the healthcare system, for which we all pay.

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