You might like this counterpart to an earlier post of mine, The Healthy Gut. It comes from a friend in her second year of pathology residency at Ohio State University. I asked for her “medical opinion on my theory”. Here’s what she had to say:
“Regarding your thoughts on the rotund, hmm. There is some evidence that being mildly overweight offers protection against peri-operative complications. It is thought that this is due to decreased levels of circulating stress hormones and increased nutritional status being able to compensate for some of the insults associated with surgery. However, as we are not barraged with controlled trauma on a regular basis, I don’t recommend fattening up as a general health strategy. Time and time again, studies demonstrate that the fat are unhealthy and the thin live longer and with better quality of health. The clogged-artery resistance to laminar flow and extra lard to supply with vital blood do not make the heart strong. Instead, the extra load stresses the heart, sometimes stretching the myocardial fibers to the point where they are no good at contracting at all. Extra fat deposits in the liver, choking out healthy hepatocytes that clean blood and make vital substances. Teeny weeny blood vessels in kidneys are clogged with cholesterol plaques killing the jewels of the body’s filtration system, glomeruli, making one unable to excrete waste and toxins. Fat breaks down into toxic metabolites, generating oxidative damage that sets the stage for cancer. And belly fat is the worst of all. Patients with jolly centers are more likely to be diabetic, have myocardial infarctions, lose their sight, and die sooner than equally fat people with a different distribution of adipose. Of the 72 autopsies I did last year, only 6 were unrelated to heft. I haven’t seen you in seven years but my spidey sense tells me that there may be a few kilos more of you. Knock it off. No more of this self-delusion, CAT. Get some exercise and eat your vegetables.
Now that I have fulfilled my public health obligation portion of the email, on to other things…”