Navigation Links
Could Fat Be Your Friend Over Age 85?
Date:3/10/2012

By Madonna Behen
HealthDay Reporter

THURSDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Medical experts have long known that obesity can take years off your life, but a new Israeli study suggests that if you're lucky enough to reach your mid-80s, carrying some extra pounds might actually help you live longer.

The study, by Tel Aviv University researchers, revealed that while obesity did increase the risk of dying for people in their 70s and early 80s, when people lived longer than that those who were obese had a slightly lower risk of death than their underweight or normal-weight peers.

The main message of the study is that "very old age has different rules, and just because something is true for most ages does not necessarily mean it is true above age 85, which is not an unusual age for older persons," said study co-author Jiska Cohen-Mansfield, director of the Herczeg Institute on Aging at Tel Aviv University.

"It may be that as one gets older, the protective effects of obesity become more pronounced," the authors wrote. For instance, heavier people are known to have lower rates of the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis and therefore have a lower risk of falls and injuries.

"Obesity may also provide energy reserves in times of stress, illness and trauma. In addition, obesity may prolong the period of pre-death weight loss, as aging is associated with decreased food intake," they wrote.

But Cohen-Mansfield cautioned that the findings don't mean that people in their mid-80s who aren't overweight should try to fatten up in order to live longer. "That is a question for a separate study," she said. "We did not examine changes in weight during the lifetime and their impact. It is possible that gaining some weight may be desirable and it may not make a difference, or it may have negative effects."

What's more, a key limitation of the study is that it only examined mortality, Cohen-Mansfield said, "and other indicators of well-being may be more important."

For the study, recently published in the Journal of Aging Research, the authors used data from about 1,350 Jewish people between the ages of 75 and 94 who were part of a national survey conducted between 1989 and 1992. Twenty years after the data was collected, the researchers followed up to see who had died. Over the course of the two decades, all but 59 participants died.

One geriatrics expert in the United States was fairly circumspect about the findings. "There are far too many unanswered questions to make any definite conclusions about weight and death in very old adults," said Dr. Evelyn Granieri, director of the division of geriatrics at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/The Allen Hospital in New York City.

"The investigators only saw the people in the study once, then looked 20 years later to see when, but not how, they died," noted Granieri. "They did not do a medical history or examination or evaluate any of the subjects' medical conditions or their medications. They did not determine if the weight the people had was new or if it was their usual weight. It may have been that the thin people were sick and their being thin was a result of chronic or acute illness."

Granieri said people who are 85 or older should not feel compelled to change their weight. "You have been successful at reaching an age that the majority of people will not attain, so whatever the other factors that may have allowed you to reach that age, most likely, any change in weight will not change your mortality," she said.

More information

The U.S. National Institutes of Health has tips on aging well.

SOURCES: Jiska Cohen-Mansfield, Ph.D., director, Herczeg Institute on Aging, and professor and chair, department of health promotion, School of Public Health, Tel Aviv University, Israel; Evelyn C. Granieri, M.D., M.P.H., M.S.Ed., director, division of geriatrics, New York-Presbyterian Hospital/The Allen Hospital, New York, N.Y.; Journal of Aging Research, Volume 2011


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Womans Recovery From Advanced Melanoma Could Help Guide Research
2. Depression Could Worsen Mental Decline in Heart Patients
3. New screening technique could provide more reliable breast cancer detection
4. Could a Statin Lower Your Risk for Depression?
5. Stem Cell Finding Could Expand Womens Lifetime Supply of Eggs
6. The mathematics of a heart beat could save lives
7. New understanding of DNA repair could eventually lead to cancer therapy
8. Pot Use Could Double Risk of Car Crash, Research Shows
9. New Criteria Could Change Who Is Diagnosed With Alzheimers
10. MIT: Stem cells could drive hepatitis research forward
11. Pairing masks and hand washing could drastically slow spread of pandemic flu
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Could Fat Be Your Friend Over Age 85?
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... 24, 2017 , ... The results from the American Cancer Society’s ... for prostate cancer patients: incidents of cancer is down as is the likelihood of ... death rate has dropped from its peak of 215.1 in 1991 to 161.2 in ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... ... American Family Care (AFC) has opened a new 4,000+ square foot state-of-the-art urgent ... area. The Bedford clinic will be the nineteenth location opened by AFC in Massachusetts ... Dr. Kristina Orio. Adams and Orio also independently own and operate AFC clinics in ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 24, 2017 , ... ... natural supplement for relieving premenstrual syndrome, or PMS . , Most women ... These symptoms can include cramps, constipation, irritability, headaches, fatigue, and other discomfort. ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... ... Would Have Dreamed: A Novel of Miracles”: a beautiful and poignant glimpse into the ... in her life. “Who Would Have Dreamed: A Novel of Miracles” is the creation of ... , Sharon shares that she started her spiritual journey later in life, but ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 24, 2017 , ... “The Octagon of Spiritual Balances”: a ... Balances” is the creation of published author, Pastor Bernard J. Weathers, pastor of Word ... bachelor degree in religious education and a master degree in theology. , ““The Octagon ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/23/2017)... , Jan. 23, 2017 Research and Markets ... - Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... The interventional radiology products ... USD 6.35 Billion in 2016, at a CAGR of 4.8%. This ... The major factors driving the growth of this market are ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... , Jan. 23, 2017 7D ... 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug ... Health Canada enabling the North American commercial launch ... system for spine surgery, the 7D Surgical System.  ... cutting-edge 3D optical technologies and machine vision algorithms ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... -- The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) is excited about ... Underserved Areas Enhancement Act (H.R. 592) in ... previously introduced in the 114 th session of ... pharmacists and their patient care services. Sponsors ... (R-KY), G.K. Butterfield (D-NC), Tom Reed ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: