Being Very Overweight Versus the Immune System: What Who Died from the Coronavirus Told Us

Executive Summary

  • Coronavirus mortality differs enormously by age and fitness level of the victim.
  • We cover the likely reason for this.


The media has given an enormous amount of coverage of the Coronavirus. However, they have tended to cover the virus in a very sensational and, therefore, non-analytical way.

Let us get into the data on the mortality of the Coronavirus to see what it tells us.

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Mortality by Age

The following table is from World O Meters, which has become the go-to site for Coronavirus statistics.

Notice the dramatically increasing mortality by age.

If we look at people in the 70 to 79-year-old category, they have mortality from Coronavirus that is 40 times higher than someone in the 30 to 39-year-old category. People above 80 have a mortality rate 74 times higher than those in the 30 to 39-year-old category. This tells us that the vast majority of deaths from Coronavirus have been the aged. This tells me that many, if not perhaps, most of the people dying from Coronavirus are having their deaths pulled forward a few years.

Major media outlets have largely argued against this analysis but point to anecdotes of young people and “perfectly healthy” who have died.

  • First, the anecdotes do not tell us the overall trend.
  • Second, as the victims who were declared perfectly healthy were not given a complete medical exam before falling ill, we don’t know what unpublished underlying issues they had.

No Underlying Symptoms in Some of the Coronavirus Deaths?

The article, Coronavirus Ravages 7 Members of a Single Family, Killing 4, in the New York Times was widely read. It describes exactly what the title says about how the Fusco family of New Jersey had a very high mortality rate from the virus.

\However, the following quotation was found in the article.

the state’s health commissioner, Judith M. Persichilli, has said Ms. Fusco-Jackson had no underlying health problems.

Ms. Paradiso Fodera said the woman’s younger siblings were also in good health before contracting the virus.

“They’re young and they don’t have any underlying conditions,” Ms. Paradiso Fodera said.

It was unclear whether Mrs. Fusco, a heavyset woman, had underlying health problems.

The term “heavyset” is a PC term for fat or overweight. Whose feelings are we trying to save here?

Ms. Fusco’s?

Well, she is dead. Perhaps it saves her family’s feelings to not have their recently deceased mother as overweight or obese. However, “heavyset” is not a medical term. Big-boned or other euphemisms also don’t belong in an article about a medical condition.

Then we can review a picture taken of the family.

Ms. Fusco is wearing a grey dress. 

According to the New York Times…

“They’re young and they don’t have any underlying conditions.”

However, nearly everyone in this photo is overweight, and some are quite overweight.

Any person with this body mass has underlying health issues. This is not fat-shaming, I don’t care what the Fusco family decided to weigh, but the analysis that the Fusco family were normal healthy individuals is just not accurate. Furthermore, the Fusco’s had a high mortality rate from Coronavirus; isn’t it likely that their physical condition was a very likely reason for this? Yet, the New York Times presents this as a great mystery.

This plays into the storyline that the media has largely been running with that.

“Anyone can die from Coronavirus.”

This is supposed to be some wisdom. The current idea of “wisdom” is that any factor affects all groups. This is a view in entire opposition to data analysis. One is allowed to point out discrepancies, but only if those discrepancies fit within some PC paradigm. For example, Coronavirus also has higher mortality with African Americans.

Major media was willing to cover the racial differences in Coronavirus deaths, even though the ratio was roughly 2x higher for African Americans than other races. 

Major media was far less interested in covering the age differences in the Coronavirus, even though the proportion is (as we covered) 40x to 76x, which is far higher than the African American differences of 2x.

The actual discrepancy seems to be of little importance to major media.

Instead, they notice some discrepancies that are “catnip” to them and then ignore or underreport far higher discrepancies. This reporting, for example, extends to the reporting of the percentage of homeless that are female. (which has been reported in some articles be 1 out of 4). The articles on this topic have tended to ignore the 3 out of 4 men that are homeless and ask…

“How can we reduce the homelessness with women!”

So yes, perhaps anyone can die from the Coronavirus, but not with anywhere near equal probability. As the table shows.

Understanding The Relationship Between Mortality and Underlying Conditions

The topic of cardiovascular fitness and being able to fight Coronavirus is found in another table from the World O Meter.

Notice the #1 most important pre-existing condition is cardiovascular disease. I think this is because of the body’s ability to bring in oxygen and remove waste to fight the virus. If one’s cardiovascular health is low, one is generally more susceptible to infection. This is why heavy people have higher mortality after surgery. This is not entirely a single factor dependency.

People can be heavy or overweight but still be relatively active. An active person still has a high lung capacity and cardiovascular condition, even if overweight. Research indicates that activity is often as important, if not more important, than one’s body mass measurement (something generally resisted by the medical community).

However, physical inactivity and obesity have a high correlation. There is no possible way that many of the people in this photo of the Fusco family were overweight but were physically active. This means that many of the members of the Fusco family could not rely on more normal body weight or being overweight but were physically active to increase their body function to fight after they contracted the Coronavirus.

The Influence of Cardiovascular Fitness on Fighting the Coronavirus

If a compromised cardiovascular system made one more susceptible to dying from the Coronavirus, it stands to reason that good cardiovascular fitness would do the opposite.

The best defense (after one has been infected with the Coronavirus, not keeping from being infected) is excellent physical condition. Closing the gyms reduces the transmission, but it has the paradoxical effect of lowering fitness, reducing one’s ability to fight Corona once or if one has contracted the virus.

The Influence of Lung Health on Fighting the Coronavirus

The #3 most crucial pre-existing condition that predicts mortality in chronic respiratory disease. This also makes sense as coronavirus primarily attacks the lungs –, but as doctors learn more about the virus, it seems to attack other organs, perhaps even the brain.

Coronavirus is closely related to several well-known viruses but is too new to have been extensively mapped and understood. 

But the most acute organ the virus invades is the lungs.

Suppose one has lower lung capacity (which a person with low cardiovascular fitness will naturally have). This naturally means the infected individual has less spare lung capacity and is more susceptible to death as their limited lung capacity fills with fluid.

More Research on Who Is Impacted by Covid

This is well laid out in the quote from Why Most of What You Know About Covid is Wrong.

There was no correlation between the stringency of lockdowns on the number of COVID strong positive correlation With COVID dashboard However, seeing with the portal portion of the population. That is a level of the sedentary behavior in the population in other words results are perfectly in line with the earlier study. The other things that were found to correlate positively With COVID mortality were aged proportion of the population with cardiovascular disease and the proportion of the population with cancer. First lockdowns appear to be completely ineffective.

Second, there is a strong link between obesity and risk of dying from COVID. We can’t say that obesity is itself itself increases risk of dying. People who are obese may have so many different biological systems malfunctioning. At the same time that it’s impossible to say whether obesity is the cause of increased risk of death or just a marker of poor health in general. Regardless, obesity is the strongest COVID risk factor that we can do something about and even if it isn’t the obesity itself that kills people, when we fix the obesity we also fix the many derangements in metabolism and immune function that go along with it.

This is expanded on in the following quotation.

“We in the U.S. have not always identified obesity as a disease, and some people think it’s a lifestyle choice. But it’s not,” said Dr. Matthew Hutter, director of the Weight Center at Massachusetts General Hospital and president of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. “It makes people sick, and we’re realizing that now.”

Obesity’s link to chronic diseases is well known, but the experience with H1N1 influenza in 2009 revealed that people with obesity are also more vulnerable to infectious diseases. Studies have also shown that they do not get the same protection from influenza vaccinations that others do. – NYT

This article was initially published in April 2020. However, in October 2021, it was updated with the following information.

Covid Versus Fat Acceptance?

There has been a substantial body or fat acceptance movement. The following book is an excellent example of this.

And this book.

The fat or body acceptance movement proposes that weight is “just a number” and that fat people can be as healthy as normal-weight people. A review of one of these books illustrates their ideas. 

This book is required reading for parents who want to help prevent eating disorders and help their kids recover from an eating disorder. The “war against obesity” has caused countless casualties when it comes to eating disorders, and this book does an excellent job of removing the stigma around weight and sharing important facts about health independent of weight. I am a big fan of “Health at Every Size,” and love the new research and added focus on social justice and environmental factors of health in “Body Respect.” In addition to improving our own health and that of our families using HAES, we must find ways to influence social systems and government policy in order to build a truly healthy society for everyone. Linda Bacon’s work is critically important as we put one foot in front of the other and do our best to overcome the devastating impacts of fatphobia and healthism. – Amazon

This video discusses how the overweight must deal with social stigmas. I am not proposing stigmatizing the overweight, but the proposal that one can be significantly overweight and healthy is incorrect. 

Why Mexico Has High Mortality from Covid

This article proposes that high levels of obesity and diabetes should not be blamed for Mexico’s high mortality rate from coronavirus, which is covered in the following quote from Forbes.

On July 23, 2020 Dr. Lopez-Gatell advised the public that in addition the pandemic, Mexico is also dealing with “national health emergencies” related to diabetes and obesity. The tweet pinned to the top of Dr. Lopez-Gatell’s Twitter profile, an account that has over 1 million followers, isn’t a warning about the benefits of social distancing or widespread mask use. It’s a political statement about Mexico’s need prevent chronic illnesses by improving individual behaviors, promoting exercise, reducing tobacco use, and improving dietary habits.

There is little evidence in the data to support the narrative that these relatively young patients are dying because they are unhealthy. Nearly half of the 35 to 55-years-old patients confirmed to have died of Covid-19 in Mexico City (1171 out of the 2450) ARE NOT listed as having asthma, diabetes, or obesity.

One question might be how well is the Mexican health system recording the pre-existing conditions of coronavirus patients.

Mexico has the number one pre capita consumption of Coke in the world. 

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