Feature

Health scare of the week: Lose weight or lose eight

Men who are obese at age 20 have already taken years off their lives—eight years, to be exact.

Men who are obese at age 20 have already taken years off their lives—eight years, to be exact. Researchers in Sweden tracked the military records of 5,000 men, starting at age 20 and going up to age 80. They found that most men who were obese at 20 were plagued by excess weight for decades to come. In any given year, they were twice as likely to die as those who didn’t have an early weight problem. Very few of the men who’d been obese at 20 were still alive at age 80; on average, they died eight years earlier than their normal-weight peers. The findings highlight the importance of addressing obesity early on, medical researcher Esther Zimmermann tells LiveScience.com. “If it has not occurred in men by the age of 20, the chances of it developing later are quite low.”

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