Obesity increases the risk of severe COVID-19: studies

High BMI appears to be an independent risk factor even for patients with chronic diseases such as diabetes, researchers say

People with obesity who develop COVID-19 are more than three times as likely to develop severe disease as someone of normal BMI, two studies show.

Obese man and woman wearing face masks

In a study of 383 consecutive patients with COVID-19 admitted to a hospital in Shenzhen, China earlier this year, progression to severe disease occurred in 39% of those who were obese and 29% of those who were overweight, compared with 19% of patients in the normal weight range.

The authors, led by the National