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The Boston Globe

Nation

Study puts new light on weight hazards

Some people obese by BMI had less risk of dying

NEW YORK — A century ago, Elsie Scheel was the perfect woman. So said a 1912 article in The New York Times about how Scheel, 24, was chosen by the ‘‘medical examiner of the 400 ‘coeds’ ’’ at Cornell University as a woman ‘‘whose very presence bespeaks perfect health.’’

At 5-foot-7 and 171 pounds, she would, by today’s medical standards, be overweight. (Her body mass index was 27; 25 to 29.9 is overweight.)

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