What we've found
- Our users with a higher BMI, on average, are more likely to report having COVID-19 symptoms.
- The average BMI for our users across 2020 was 27.66
- Users with a healthy BMI of 18.5 - 25 are more likely to report being happier.
- Evergreen Life users with a BMI of over 25 are more likely to have a diabetes diagnosis.
These insights are based on correlations which are statistical links between two sets of data. While we focus only on more plausible and interesting links, they should not be seen to imply cause or effect.
The Evergreen community's BMI
The graph below indicates how the average BMI of our Evergreen community has been changing. Across 2020 it was 27.66, which is still above the healthy BMI range of 18-25.
BMI and disease
Using Evergreen users’ data* on the incidence of diabetes and BMI, the following graph shows the likelihood of having a diabetes diagnosis varies with BMIs in the range 18-45.
The likelihood of having diabetes increases with every additional kilogram of weight, even for those at the upper end of the healthy weight range. We’ve also shown the Evergreen average BMI for comparison.
The next graph shows that a diagnosis of osteoarthritis becomes more likely as BMI increases in men and women over 55.
The following chart compares people in the Evergreen community with a healthy BMI with those with a BMI of over 25. It’s well known that those with lower BMIs are less likely to have a diabetes diagnosis. What’s more surprising is they are likely to report feeling happier.
So does a healthy BMI make you happy, or does being happy help you maintain a healthy BMI? Sadly we can’t answer that yet, our data is only telling us there is a link. However, in time and with our communities help, we hope to be able to help shed more light on these links.
BMI and age
Looking at the average BMI of our users in different age groups, all averages are still overweight. However as the graph below shows, it seems that of the users who are tracking it, those under 35 years of age are losing weight while older people are gaining.
How many of our users are overweight?
The graph below shows the average % of Evergreen Life users that are overweight in each region. At least 50% of our users are overweight throughout the country. Wales has the highest with 73% being overweight, and London the lowest with 55%.
Here's what you can do to improve your BMI
The North/South divide
Does location affect our BMI? We wanted to explore if there are any disparities in the BMI of our users between the North of England, the Midlands and the South. The North and the Midlands both had an average BMI of 28.7 whereas the South had an average BMI of 27.9. The map above demonstrates this divide, with the darker colours at the top and lighter in the southern regions. Yorkshire is a slight anomaly, with a lower average percentage of overweight users than its surrounding regions.
*This graph uses data from over 33,000 Evergreen Users who have a linked GP record and a value of their BMI. A locally weighted scatterplot smoothing method is used (see https://bit.ly/3pcmdMd) to generate the curve and its confidence intervals (95% Confidence level). BMI values over 45 and under 18 are truncated due to small sample size in these ranges, resulting in imprecise estimates that are uninformative.
Insights disclaimer: All insights are statistically significant at the 95% confidence level.
Maps disclaimer: The map uses data from 30,000+ users, the regions that do not have sufficient data remain white.
BMI disclaimer: The average BMI by age includes data from 27,000 users within the ages of 18 and 90 years old. Obese is defined as a BMI > 30 and Overweight is defined as 25< BMI <30 as per https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/obesity/