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Obesity Increases Rheumatoid Arthritis Risk

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Obesity already has been linked to osteoarthritis, which occurs when the cartilage between joints wears down over time. Now, it also appears to increase the risk of rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic inflammatory disease that damages joints and other parts of the body. Danish researchers tracked 55,037 middle-aged men and women (13 percent had type 2 diabetes) for an average of 20 years and found that obese women had a 46 percent greater chance of developing rheumatoid arthritis than normal-weight women did. Every 5 percent increase in total body fat boosted the women’s risk by 10 percent; every 2 inches added to their waistlines increased their odds of developing rheumatoid arthritis by 5 percent. The message: Achieve and maintain a healthy weight to help protect yourself from rheumatoid arthritis.
Source: Arthritis Care & Research, July 5, 2018