Can my body mass index (BMI) affect how long I live?

With every lump of blubber, you shorten your life, according to the National Institutes of Health. Their study found that your risk of death increases 31% with every five-point increase in body mass index (BMI). Here are the NIH's exact calculations, according to the New England Journal of Medicine:
  • A BMI of 25.0 to 29.9 increased death risk by 13%.
  • A BMI of 30.0 to 34.9 increased death risk by 44%.
  • A BMI of 35.0 to 39.9 increased death risk by 88%.
  • A BMI of 40.0 to 49.9 increased death risk by 251%.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.