From this WebMD article Overweight Older People Live Longer:
“People who carry a few extra pounds after age 70 tend to live longer than people who don’t, new research finds.
Overweight older adults who took part in the Australian study had a clear survival advantage over those who were normal weight, underweight, or obese.
The findings suggest that the widely accepted body mass index (BMI) weight guidelines may not be particularly useful after age 70, lead researcher Leon Flicker, PhD, of the University of Western Australia tells WebMD."
“Last summer, researchers in Canada reported the same findings after analyzing data from more than 11,000 adults followed for more than a decade. In that study, people who met the criteria for being overweight were 17% less likely to die compared to people of normal weight.”
Body Mass Index (BMI) was used to determine whether one was underweight or overweight. BMI does not differentiate between muscle and fat. Muscle is denser than fat therefore muscular people register higher on the BMI scale. Extrapolating from the study, less muscular people (underweight according to BMI measurements) die younger, and more muscular people (overweight according to BMI measurements) live longer. That makes more sense.
Mike Tyson at his prime fighting weight with 5.5% body fat was obese according to BMI measurements.
BMI does not take into account how muscular a person is. One researcher described the BMI as crude inaccurate, but easy to use and useful. How can something that is near meaningless be useful? No skin folds to measure, no need for expensive equipment, no need for body immersion - just take their height measurement and weigh them.
More muscle means more longevity. Strength training will increase muscle and reverse many of the bio-markers of aging. This does not require hours in the gym. Your life can be transformed in just minutes a week with the right exercise program.
With a high intensity strength training program you can work the whole body in less than one half hour, and it only need be performed once or twice a week to see continuing results. We have such a strength training program at both our locations - New Orleans Personal Trainers and Austin Personal Trainers. An active lifestyle and a little strength training is a program most people can stick to, and it can have profound effects on one's fitness and health.