Obesity Leads To Early Death Regardless Of Fitness Levels Research Suggests

Obesity Leads To Early Death Regardless Of Fitness Levels Research Suggests

According to a 2015 study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, regardless of physical fitness, obese people are significantly more likely to die at a young age than those who are at normal weight and in poor shape.

The researchers state that the concept of “fat but fit” has emerged in recent years, which implies that keeping fit can compensate for being obese. However the new findings that are given in the 2015 study, add to an already substantial body of evidence which refutes this idea.

In previous Gym Keg blogs we have written about how effective 30 minutes of exercise five times a week can be, helping to prevent and manage chronic diseases. Interestingly obesity is often an underlying factor that can lead to a multitude of diseases that exercise can help fend off. Examples of these diseases include diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

The growing body of evidence suggests that being fit and obese can still lead to an elevated risk of many chronic diseases. Therefore in order to be healthy, you should make sure that you eat well to supplement your exercising efforts.

In a recent editorial in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, scientists have blamed fast food companies for trying to capitalize on the idea that fitness can negate the effects of being obese and eating a poor diet. The scientists liken the tactics used by these fast food companies to sell their unhealthy products to that of the tobacco industry.

One of the main lies pushed by these companies is that poor physical fitness is the biggest risk factor for both diabetes and heart disease and the most outrageous practice of fast food companies according to the editorial, is the use of sports images to sell junk food and sugary drinks.

These tactics are all designed to hide the mounting evidence that eating a poor diet is perhaps the biggest risk factor for bad health. Indeed a study by the Lancet supports this, positing that eating a poor diet causes more disease globally than lack of exercise, smoking and alcohol combined.

As the evidence is increasingly pointing towards obesity leading to early death, check out our articles on complex carbohydrates and healthy fats to read about ways in which you can tweak your diet.


Hogstrom G, Nordstrom A, Nordstrom P. Aerobic Fitness in late adolescence and the risk of early death: a prospective cohort study of 1.3 million Swedish men. International Journal of Epidemiology. 2015.