Numbers are easier. That may be why a person’s weight — and the desire of millions of people to lose weight — is the first topic under discussion when it comes to health and longevity. Not long after you walk into your doctor’s exam room, for example, you’ll step on a scale. It’s usually the first measurement they take, ahead of vital signs like blood pressure and heart rate.
This makes sense. It’s a number, which means it’s easy to see if your weight has changed in either direction since the last time they weighed you.
But there’s an unintended result: You come away thinking that your weight is every bit as important as how well your heart and blood vessels are working, and that losing a few pounds will improve your health in tangible, long-lasting ways.