Links between obesity and mortality have become increasingly evident, since the earliest pandemic of the 21st century.
In a new study from The University of Texas at San Antonio and elsewhere, researchers examined if excess body weight may have been linked to high rates of COVID-19 death around the globe.
In the study, the team analyzed plausible associations of COVID-19 mortality and excess weight in nearly 5.5 billion adults from 154 countries around the world.
The main finding from the analysis is a strong association between COVID-19 mortality and the proportion of overweight in adult populations spanning 154 countries.
When the proportion of overweight people in a country’s adults is 1% higher than that in another country’s adults, it is reasonable to predict that COVID-19 mortality would be 3.5% higher in the first country.
The team says, clinically, excess body weight is related to several comorbidities that can lead to an increasingly severe course of and consequent death from COVID-19.
Metabolic disorders, for example, can predispose individuals to a poorer COVID-19 outcome. Since excess body weight can result in a greater volume and longer duration of contagion, it can also lead to a higher level of exposure to COVID-19.
They added that on average, the COVID-19 pandemic has been more fatal for adults residing in parts of the world characterized by excess body weight.
The researchers believe their findings can be used to uphold public policy regulations on the food industry, to the extent that it profits off the sales of processed foods, foods high in salt, sugar and saturated fats.
With the death toll from the current pandemic exceeding 4.5 million, the group’s main findings call for immediate and effective regulations that are long overdue.
If you care about COVID, please read studies about the cause of blood clots in people with severe COVID-19 and findings of this existing drug could inhibit COVID-19 virus.
For more information about COVID and your health, please see recent studies about antibodies from COVID-19 vaccination almost 3 times higher than from infection and results showing that aspirin and other common anti-inflammatory drugs could help prevent COVID-19 deaths.
The study is published in Public Health in Practice. One author of the study is Hamid Beladi.
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