Health Plus: Does extra weight actually extend your life? - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Health Plus: Does extra weight actually extend your life?

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Thin may be in by society's standards, but new research shows some adults who carry a little extra weight may live longer than their thinner counterparts.

Here's Health Plus with details.

High school students Maggie O'Connor and Ally McCarvel take exercising seriously.

The girls work out at Covenant Wellness Center in Waterloo during their off-season from sports.

"I come here maybe a couple times a week. I did in the summer a lot more, but now I'm just getting in shape for soccer season," said Maggie.

"During the summer, before the summer, I kind of have a little bit more motivation just because summer is coming," said Ally.

Now comes a new study suggesting packing on a few extra pounds may be healthier for you in the long run.

But one local fitness expert says not so fast.

"You know there are studies for certain people especially the older population, 60, 70, 80-year-olds, that carrying a little more fat is more healthier for them. They don't want to be super thin because they need it to survive. But I don't want people to take it the wrong way either that carrying excessive fat on your body is healthy because it isn't," said Covenant Rehabilitation and Wellness Manager Sheri Purdy.

Purdy says the bottom line is exercising and eating right are essential for healthy weight management, but admits your body mass index or BMI isn't always the best measure.

"But there is that 10% of the population that it isn't going to be accurate on especially for women who are small and have a large body mass index or large body muscle mass percentage especially for men who are extremely short or short," she said.

As for these high school girls, they say no study is going to keep them from the physical and emotional boost they get from working out and keeping their weight down.

"I feel good. It makes me feel good because I can like keep up with my teammates and stuff but when I don't I just feel lazy but I know that nothing's wrong with me like I am perfectly fine but you know sometimes it's nice to be like more in shape," said Maggie.

"I think it's important for young people to stay in shape because they are just going to be overall happier with themselves and going to live a more healthier lifestyle and be happy," said Ally.

Your BMI is a measure of body fat based on your height and weight.

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