Fat Around the Middle? You May Be at Higher Heart Disease Risk: New Study

Abdominal obesity indices are a better predictor of heart disease than body mass index, according to a new study published in Circulation, the official journal of the American Heart Association.  According to the authors of the study, reliance on a waist-hip ratio, rather than a waist measurement alone, generates more accurate predictions of heart disease risk in both men and women.

The research involved the cases of 24,508 men and women between the ages of 45 and 79, in the United Kingdom.  Scientists recorded the weight, height, waist measurement, hip measurement, and other heart disease risk factors of participants from 1993 to 1997.  On average, they followed up with participants for the next 9 years, during which time 1,708 men and 892 women developed coronary heart disease.  Those with the highest waist-hip ratio proved to have been most likely to develop heart disease. 

Results of the study suggest that people whose abdominal fat puts them at higher risk of heart disease do not always appear obese.  Scientists warn, however, that most people would still reap significant health benefits from losing excessive weight. 

Previously on the DC Metro Area Medical Malpractice Law Blog, we have posted articles related to:

  • Diet and lifestyle tips for addressing high blood pressure
  • A study showing that reducing risk factors has reduced the national incidence of heart disease
  • Research demonstrating that many Hispanic women misunderstand their heart disease risk

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