ZocdocAnswersWill I get sick more often if I have low body fat?

Question

Will I get sick more often if I have low body fat?

Does body fat protect me from illness. I've noticed I've gotten sick twice in the past four months and my body fat is very low since I've started working out.

Answer

There are some questions you should consider that may help elucidate the answer to your question better. What is your current weight with regards to what is the healthy weight range, and more importantly, what is your BMI currently and how does that compare to what is considered a normal range for BMI according to your height? How often are you working out and are you taking the correct steps to ensure that you are eating a proper diet and giving your body the appropriate rest between work outs? Have you had any problems with frequent infections or illnesses in the past? The answers to these questions, along with your medical history, physical exam and presenting symptoms will help your primary care doctor decide upon the appropriate work up and possible treatment options available. This may include lab tests, imaging studies and a referral if deemed medically necessary. In general, if you are within the normal range for body fat, then it is unlikely that this should cause you to be at a higher risk for developing illness. If you are well below your healthy body weight though, this may be a potential cause. It is important that you are evaluated by your pcp for further work up.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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