Last updated: 21 May 2020 at 4pm
There has been many misleading reports recently about obesity and coronavirus (COVID-19).
What we know from recent research is that:
- a high number of people with obesity have been admitted to intensive care units (ICU) with coronavirus
- people living with obesity have an increased risk of a more severe form of coronavirus
There's no evidence that people with obesity:
- carry coronavirus without any symptoms for longer than other people
- have a higher risk of passing coronavirus on to others
Why people living with obesity are more at risk
People living with obesity are at a higher risk of more severe illness.
This is because obesity is sometimes associated with:
- lung diseases such as sleep apnoea and asthma
- heart disease - which can reduce oxygen levels in the blood
- type 2 diabetes
- high blood pressure
- impaired immune system function and an impaired response to bacterial and viral illness
This increased risk does not apply to all people living with obesity.
There needs to be more research in this area.
Looking after your mental health
It is difficult living with any medical condition during the current uncertainty.