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Research Letter
Oct 24, 2011

Editor’s Note—Never Too Late to Reduce Obesity

Arch Intern Med. 2011;171(19):1770. doi:10.1001/archinte.171.19.1770-a

The United States has seen an alarming increase in obesity rates in the last decade, such that two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese. While the implications of childhood obesity for future health remain of great concern, this long-term follow-up from the Harvard Alumni Study of body mass index (BMI) and its relationship to mortality brings us some reason for hope that efforts to address childhood obesity are well worth it. Gray et al find that the negative influence of early BMI on mortality drops out when middle-age BMI is added. It is never too late to adopt healthy lifestyle changes.