Per the US CDC’s Anthropometric Reference Data (PDF) 5% of adult, non-pregnant women in the US weigh less than 111lbs, and 95% weigh less than 250lbs. 90% of US women weigh between 111 and 250lbs.
This is why I consider myself a statistical outlier, weight-wise. As I’ve noted before, in some ways I’m a freak of nature — most humans simply can’t weigh as much as I do. And most adults can’t weigh less than 111lbs.
This article from the German newspaper Der Spiegel profiles a woman who is also far outside the average, but on the other side. Lizzie Velasquez weighs 62lbs and was born with neonatal progeroid syndrome (NPS); she has zero body fat. Not low body fat – zero. Most children born with the NPS die within the first year or suffer mental retardation. In Lizzie Velasquez’ case, her brain developed normally. The lack of fat reserves affects her appearance, but also her stamina — she gets hungry much more frequently than other people, and shows starvation symptoms (listlessness, immune resistance) if she doesn’t eat when hunger pangs hit. Ms Velasquez reportedly averages 8,000 calories throughout the day.
I don’t envy Ms Velasquez her NPS. Nor do I think it’s something to joke about, any more than anorexia. But I am glad that she seems comfortable with herself, not pining for a cure.
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