I have seen articles debating this idea from time to time...That you can be overweight, but still be fit and healthy if you are doing the right things to take care of yourself. But up to now, the prevailing attitude that I have seen is that living a healthy lifestyle is not enough; if you are overweight, you need to lose it.
I have wondered about this. Ok, so technically I am overweight. But I do try to be healthy. I exercise. I eat my fruits and veggies. I do my best to limit unhealthy foods (hey! we all deserve a treat now and then, right?). I get 7 - 8 hours of sleep every night. I drink lots of water. I feel pretty good. Doesn't all of that count for anything? Sure, I'd like to be thin, but if it doesn't happen, does that mean I'm not healthy?
I had even asked my doctor about it at one point. I eat healthy, I exercise regularly, I told him. Consulting his BMI chart, he told me You should weigh between 120 - 123 lbs. You need to lose weight. (I found it interesting though that he never mentioned it until I specifically asked. Does this mean I'm overweight but don't look it?)
Yesterday on the way home from work, Moon was telling me about this article he read. A study has been done to show that being a little bit overweight can sometimes be good, says Moon. So of course I had to go find the article and see for myself:
A Little Extra Weight Not Deadly
On the one hand, this article makes sense to me. It even feels a little bit like vindication. All my efforts count for something after all.
On the other hand...This should not serve as an excuse to be complacent about one's weight. I could just see the wheels turning in Moon's head...Yeah! It's ok to be overweight! I knew I was healthy!
Problem is, there is a difference between being moderately overweight (the article specifically states up to 25 lbs) and being obese. I may not know exactly how many pounds Moon is overweight by, but I know it's more than 25. I know he's in denial because he doesn't want to do anything about it. So he just keeps telling me that he's healthy. And I keep worrying about Something Bad happening to him.
Ok, I know there are no guarantees. You can be healthy and still have Something Bad happen to you. But I figure it's gotta be worth it to take care of yourself; can't hurt to improve your odds, right? So I wish that Moon would make an effort. I mean, it's really kind of nice to have a husband around the house; he can reach the top shelf in the kitchen cupboards and change lightbulbs (did I mention I'm 5 feet tall and he is 6' 2"?), and he's always warm which comes in handy for a person like me who is always cold...But I digress.
Boiling it down - I do think it makes sense. The important thing is to live healthy. That doesn't mean you can ignore your weight - as it points out at the end of the article, extra pounds can creep up and push you out of that safe "moderately overweight" zone. But if you don't manage to get the number on the scale down to the magic number, it does not automatically mean your days are numbered.
So I'll keep on truckin', trying to get down to the target weight range for my height. What I will take away from this is that if I don't manage to get there, it's not the end of the world. The important thing is that I keep doing the right things to keep myself healthy.