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Stick to Your Weight-Loss Plan to Protect Your Heart

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Don’t ease up on your weight-loss efforts if you’re obese but otherwise healthy. For 12 years, researchers followed about 5,000 adults. At the start, their average age was 60, nearly half were obese, and 10 percent had diabetes. Among the obese, 1,051 had fewer than three red flags for heart disease, such as elevated blood pressure, blood glucose, or cholesterol. But by the study’s end, 48 percent of them had developed those risk factors, as revealed by checkups done every two years. Their odds of developing heart disease were 60 percent higher than the study participants who maintained their good health and did not become obese. The risk remained even after researchers considered the amount participants exercised. While the study doesn’t prove that obesity directly caused those heart disease risk factors, it shows there’s a link between excess weight and an increased likelihood of heart disease in otherwise healthy people. The lesson: If you’re overweight, make an effort to shed excess pounds regardless of your current good health.
Source: Journal of the American College of Cardiology, May 2018

 

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