• Germany edition
 
Getting fat under stress 'the healthy option'
Photo: DPA

Getting fat under stress 'the healthy option'

Published: 27 Feb 2013 13:06 GMT+01:00
Updated: 27 Feb 2013 13:06 GMT+01:00

A German obesity specialist says fat people are often healthier than thin people - and live longer because their bodies are better able to nourish their brains when in under stress.

Professor Achim Peters from Lübeck University in Schleswig-Holstein, has just published a book in German called Overweight Myths - Why Fat People Live Longer.

He told Die Welt newspaper that he and his team had observed that "people react to a stressful, uncertain circumstances in two different ways. Some eat and become fat. The others refuse food and become thin. The ones who become really ill are the thin ones. The fat ones are in comparison with the thin ones, much healthier."

Being thin was in itself not a problem, he said, but those who lose weight when under stress were in danger.

"Those who have no stress and are thin - they do the best," he told the paper on Wednesday.

"But when under stress one becomes either fat or sick. We have to worry much more about the thin stressed people than about the fat stressed people. Yet they are not regarded widely as having a problem - as they are thin. But in fact they die earliest."

He told the paper he and his team had looked at what they called toxic stress - environmental problems which a person cannot change, such as poverty, bullying and abuse.

People who put on weight when under this toxic stress have the nutrients to supply their brain. "When it does not get them from external sources, it gets them from inside, from muscles and even worse, from the organs. Thin stressed people are the least healthy people."

He also seemed to suggest that being overweight was generally a reaction to stress. "If you look carefully there were or are stressful circumstances for fat people who do not seem stressed. But these people have found a solution. They have become stress tolerant and in return, get a balanced mood. But they have to pay a price for this - eating."

There were anti-stress therapies which he said were effective in the longer term and could alter eating behaviour and lead to weight loss. But he added that there was no ideal weight - rather, he told the paper, "each person has an ideal survival strategy for their period of life, and the associated weight."

He said society's animosity to fat people puts them under psychological and real pressure. "There are studies which show that fat people earn less, are more likely to be fired and are more often bullied. The beauty ideal of being slim contributes much to the unhappiness of fat people."

"Society needs to change, not fat people," he said.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

15:57 February 27, 2013 by marimay
Whatever makes you feel better, fatty!
16:56 February 27, 2013 by Bulldawg82
Being overweight may be good for the brain during high stress, but it is equally bad for the heart under those same conditions. You just can't win . . .
19:13 February 27, 2013 by zeddriver
After considerable research. It has been determined that after having been born. You will at some point die. You MIGHT influence the length of it by just a few years +/-. So enjoy yourself in moderation.
23:59 February 27, 2013 by grazhdanin
I don't think fat people live longer.
03:38 February 28, 2013 by schneebeck
Maybe it's good for stress.

But excess blubber usually works against the knees, back, heart, endurance, appearance, self-esteem, and doctor's bills. Costs more to eat too.

Of course, if you need to shed 200 lbs, you obviously couldn't even shed 50 lbs so forget about getting rid of 200.

Hence the need for the fantasy, "blubber is good for you".
03:54 February 28, 2013 by CoolBlueIce
So if your friends are offering to set you up on a blind date and describe your potential date as someone who "handles stress very well", you might want to pass on the offer. It's akin to "she drives a really nice car" or "he's a nice guy.'
12:39 February 28, 2013 by frankgrilla
LMAO......so being fat is the new cool? oh well then i guess i will not be cool then...... checkout Americas Slaves http://topafric.com/index.php/en/site-map/413-america-s-slave-narratives.html
13:51 February 28, 2013 by ichbines
Oh yeah, let me get this right. I should increase my risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, stroke and dementia so I can survive my next period of stress. And exactly which of us suffers from so little extra fat that our body won't find something to convert to sugar? Certainly no one in the industrialized world. And which of us does not shove something or other in our mouths every half hour whether under stress or not? Please! This sounds like it is coming from the meat, dairy, bakery folks. Not even a good try...
13:38 March 1, 2013 by Jerusalem.crickets
@ Marimay - you are a sizeist douche. Yeah... not all of us are thin, but that word is effing offensive.
20:50 March 1, 2013 by schneebeck
Hurting people's feelings ought to be avoided if it can be.

But this is some new fantasy vocabulary:

"sizeist" - "You terrible evil 'sizeist', I can't help it if I am of a big 'size' ".

"not thin" - "I'm not fat, I'm just 'not thin' ".

No one has criticized people of "size" here, they have criticized people of excessive body fat.

No one is talking about people who are "not thin", which includes people of normal body mass. The article is about people who are excessively fat.

And don't start trying to deceive other people into thinking they are not fat, they are just "not thin". And don't tell other people it is not their fault, it is the "sizeists" fault.

Please do yourself, and society, a big favor. Don't confuse things by using newly created words of self delusion that don't change the reality that excessive body fat is not good for a person at all. It is also not good for society in terms of health care costs.

Now someone is going to call me a "bully" for speaking straightforward, frankly, and constructively.
Today's headlines
Tennis aces close in on Fed Cup final
Members of the German Fed Cup Team celebrate after an earlier victory in the tournament. Photo: DPA

Tennis aces close in on Fed Cup final

Germany took hold of their Fed Cup semi-final on Saturday, winning both the opening day singles to lead Australia 2-0 in Brisbane. READ () »

Croatia extradites ex-top spy to Germany

Croatia extradites ex-top spy to Germany

Croatia extradited a former Yugoslav spy chief, Zdravko Mustac, to Germany on Thursday to face charges for the 1983 murder of a dissident on German soil. READ () »

German court jails Somali pirate for 12 years
An officer of the Lower Saxon Criminal Investigation Department (CID) securing evidence on the hijacked ship Marida Marguerite. Photo: DPA

German court jails Somali pirate for 12 years

A German court has sentenced a Somali pirate chief to 12 years in jail for hijacking a ship off the Horn of Africa and tormenting its crew during an eight-month ordeal. READ () »

New app helps clients find prostitutes
Photo: DPA

New app helps clients find prostitutes

While the German government is considering tightening prostitution laws, Berlin entrepreneurs have developed a smartphone app to connect sex-workers with clients. READ () »

Highs of 22C forecast for Easter weekend
Photo: DPA

Highs of 22C forecast for Easter weekend

The days running up to Easter may be cool and wet, but the holiday weekend should be a bit warmer for most of Germany, according to forecasters. READ () »

Berlin man must call himself a mother
The fight over the transgender man's right to be his child's official father has been raging since last year. Photo: DPA

Berlin man must call himself a mother

A transgender person who became the first man in Germany to give birth in March 2013 must be registered as the child's mother, a court has ruled after his year-long court battle to be named a father. READ () »

Study: rape convictions fall sharply
Photo: DPA

Study: rape convictions fall sharply

The chance of being convicted of rape in Germany has more than halved in the past two decades to fewer than one in ten, a major study revealed on Thursday. READ () »

SPD: Restore 45-percent investment tax
The tax privilege for investment income is unfair, says the SPD. Photo: DPA

SPD: Restore 45-percent investment tax

The centre-left half of Germany's coalition government has called for the old top rate of a 45-percent tax on investments to be brought back - to match standard income tax and fight the squeeze on middle incomes. READ () »

Customs find smuggled cash in every third car
Sniffing out the money. Photo: DPA

Customs find smuggled cash in every third car

The number of Germans smuggling large amounts of cash across the Swiss border into Germany rose dramatically last year. Customs officers said on Thursday they made a find in almost every third car they checked. READ () »

Crystal meth use hits record level
Crystal meth seized in Bavaria. Photo: DPA

Crystal meth use hits record level

Consumption of crystal meth in Germany appears to have reached a record level, according to government figures published on Thursday. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Rhineland
Elderly man taped €200,000 to his genitals
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
What's the unemployment rate in your area of Germany?
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Nine ways to celebrate Easter like a German
Photo: Galerie Bilderwelt
Gallery
World War I in colour photos
Photo: DPA
Society
'The mafia has infiltrated every sector in Germany'
Photo: DPA
Society
JobTalk: Why you should teach English in Germany
Photo: DPA
National
330,000 sign up against TV licence fee
Photo: DPA
Hamburg
School kids hospitalized after 'porno' party
Photo: Submitted
Frankfurt
'I'll get even with my old pal Schwarzenegger'
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The week in pictures: April 5th - April 11th
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Ten great inventions you (probably) didn't know were German
Photo: J. Arthur White
Berlin
Clashes in Berlin as refugees tear down their own camp
Advertisement:
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Munich's baby polar bears are finally named
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The 10 best German employers to work for
CurrencyFair
Sponsored Article
Why it pays to avoid banks when making overseas transfers
Mr. Lodge
Sponsored Article
How to find a furnished rental in Munich
Sponsored Article
How to make a lasting impression in business
Hult International Business School
Sponsored Article
What they don't teach you at Business School
Photo: DPA
Society
Nine jobs you can only do in Germany
Photo:ESL
Sponsored Article
How to integrate successfully in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,104
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd