How big butt can save your life

New research from Cell Metabolism magazine says woman with bigger hips and bottoms have a lower risk of heart attack, stroke and type 2 diabetes than those who store fat around their mid-section.

“It is better for people of normal weight to be pear-shaped rather than apple-shaped, so that weight is carried on the bottom half of their body rather than around the middle,” explains lead author, Dr Norbert Stefan.

The composition of fat in the lower body is different than that stored in the abdomen, as abdominal fat is more likely to release fatty acids into the blood, resulting in higher cholesterol and diabetes. Visceral fat sits closer to the body’s vital organs, contributing to inflammatory changes in the body that are associated with conditions like heart disease, diabetes, cancer, fatty liver disease, polycystic ovarian syndrome and more. You may have heard it referred to as ‘middle-age spread’, as it’s something that can increase as we age.

“In pear-shaped people, these areas work like a sponge, with fat stored in fat cells where it cannot do much harm.”