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What's Worse: Being Underweight or Overweight?

What's worse: being 10 pounds underweight or 10 pounds overweight?
 
If you're like most people, you probably think that being overweight is potentially more deadly than underweight. 
 
But a five-year Canadian study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health concluded that being underweight leads to premature mortality by a factor of almost double. 
 
The researchers also concluded that being underweight is more dangerous than being obese. 
 
But before you go rejoicing and falling off the zero-calorie shirataki noodle wagon, gorging on high-starch pasta as a result of the results, there are some dubious research methods in this media-hyped study. 
 
For example, the study was very small, involving only 51 subjects. 
 
Furthermore, the participants were more likely to be heavy users of drugs and/or alcohol, cigarettes, in general poor health and from poor socio-economic backgrounds. 
 
What would be more interesting is if the study involved thousands of underweight participants who generally abstained from heavy alcohol and drug usage but were on severe calorie-restricted diets, either for cosmetic or health reasons. 
 
The study authors also noted that the 51 subjects were more likely to suffer from poor self esteem. Obviously, living a positive, fulfilling life is more likely to result in a longer life span. 
 
So, if you were on a calorie-restricted diet, would you be more likely to die earlier than you would if you were on a 2,000-calorie diet, which is the average recommended daily intake?
 
After all, if you ate Miracle Noodles and veggies for lunch and breakfast, your calorie intake would most likely be lower than someone eating a diet rich in starchy carbohydrates. Would this mean you would be at risk of experiencing premature mortality? 
 
Not if you are eating nutrient dense foods. Miracle Noodle contains healthy soluble fiber to help you stay full and aid in elimination, but admittedly, it is not rich in many vitamins and minerals because Miracle Noodles are 97% water. 
 
But if you are eating low-starch vegetables, especially crunchy green ones like broccoli, asparagus, green beans, etc..., you'll be getting plenty of disease fighting nutrients in your diet. That is the essence of nutrient density, the catch phrase that nutritionists love to impart in their clients...eat a nutrient-dense diet, they say....
 
Eating a little bit of healthy fats every day like olive oil, avocados, nuts and grass-fed butter, and especially lots of fresh low-starch vegetables is the most sensible eating plan. You won't have to worry about counting calories--and being underweight. 
 

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