Obesity considerations during the COVID-19 outbreak

François Dohet, Suva Loap, Alain Menzel, Mohammed Iddir, Frédéric Dadoun, Torsten Bohn, Hanen Samouda*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The worldwide population is facing a double burden of epidemic, the COVID-19 and obesity. This is even more alarming as obesity increases the COVID-19 severity. However, the relationship between obesity and COVID-19 severity is more complex than a simple association with BMI. In particular, obesity has been associated with low death rates in patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome, a fatal comorbidity to COVID-19, possibly due to the obesity paradox. Also, visceral adiposity could be a major risk factor for COVID-19 severity, due to its immune activation component, release of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 and involvement in the cytokine storm, hypercoagulability and embolism. A poor antioxidant nutritional status also weakens the immune system, increasing inflammation and infection risk. Moreover, the COVID-19 lockdown might impact lifestyle patterns, mental health and weight bias, worsening the obesity then COIVD-19 situation. On the other hand, health care expenses and productivity loss are expected to increase during the concomitant epidemics. The co-occurrence of obesity and COVID-19 is a major challenge at both public health and economic levels that should urgently be taken into consideration. The identification of COVID-19 weight related risk factors and the development of appropriate weight management programs are needed to tackle the concomitant epidemics.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal for Vitamin and Nutrition Research
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 27 Jan 2021

Keywords

  • ACE2
  • COVID-19
  • Obesity
  • antioxidants
  • cytokine storm
  • visceral fat

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