Belly Fat Increases Cardiac Risk Factors

Filed Under: Heart Health, Weight Loss Program
Last Reviewed 04/17/2014

Belly Fat Increases Cardiac Risk Factors

We’re used to thinking of obesity as a cardiac risk factor, and it is. But now, a new study shows that being slim with belly fat ups your heart attack risk factors more than obesity.

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic looked at the BMI (body mass index) and waist-to-hip ratio of 12,785 adults, with a mean age of 44 years old. They followed up with those participants over a 14 year period, during which 2,562 of the participants passed away. Of those deaths 1,138 were caused by a cardiac event.

What the researchers found is that those with a normal BMI, yet an “apple shape”—meaning a high waist-to-hip ratio—had a two times greater risk of death and a 2.75 greater risk of cardiovascular disease than those with a nonapple shape.

Why Belly Fat Is so Dangerous

The reason that belly fat increases cardiac risk factors is that this particular fat secretes a steady stream of chemicals that kindle inflammation throughout the body, damaging the lining of arterial walls, including the coronary arteries and blood vessels in the kidneys.

If you have weight to lose, here are my top 10 tips for healthy weight loss. I also have a free online center filled with healthy recipes you can try. 

Now it’s your turn: Do you have any secrets to share for losing weight and decrease your cardiac risk factors?

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DISCLAIMER: The content of is offered on an informational basis only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health provider before making any adjustment to a medication or treatment you are currently using, and/or starting any new medication or treatment. All recommendations are "generally informational" and not specifically applicable to any individual's medical problems, concerns and/or needs.

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