Obese people are more likely to suffer chronic pain than their normal-weight peers, even if they are otherwise healthy, a major new study has found.
Stony Brook University researchers, reporting in the journal Obesity, based their findings on an analysis of more than 1 million people surveyed by telephone by the Gallop Organization from 2008 to 2010.
Pollsters asked American men and women key health questions, including details about their height and weight, health conditions they suffer and whether they “experienced pain today.”
Sixty three percent of those surveyed were considered overweight or obese, researchers found. Compared to normal-weight people in the survey, those who were overweight were about 20 percent more likely to report experiencing pain.
Obese respondents were 68 percent more likely to say they suffer chronic pain. And the heaviest individuals surveyed were even more likely to experience pain.
“Our findings confirm and extend earlier studies about the link between obesity and pain. These findings hold true after we accounted for several common pain conditions and across gender and age,” said Stony Book researcher Dr. Arthur A. Stone, in a university release on the study.