The Link Between Obesity and Heart Disease
The link between obesity and heart disease is a fact. If you are between the ages of 40-59 and you are either overweight or obese, you have a 20-85% higher risk of developing heart disease than someone who has a normal body weight. People who have a body mass index (BMI) between 25-30+ are also at a much higher risk of getting heart disease at a younger age. The fact is, obese people have a shorter lifespan.
Obesity increases your risk of developing hypertension, type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol which all increase your risk of developing heart disease. People who are overweight and obese are also at a higher risk of developing metabolic syndrome which includes high blood pressure, high triglycerides, high blood sugar, and a large waist circumference 35″ for women and 40″ or more for men. High blood pressure caused by obesity irritates plaque in the arteries which triggers a heart attack.
Obesity is also associated with hidden inflammation in the body which increases the risk of atherosclerosis and the build-up of plaque in the arteries. Obesity also affects your heart’s ability to function normally. Obese people are at a higher risk of developing arrhythmia and atrial fibrillation which causes blood clots which leads to stroke and heart failure. Obesity can also lead to heart enlargement.
For people who are overweight or obese, their hearts have to work harder which puts their hearts under more stress. Over time, this extra stress on the heart can cause heart failure. The larger a person’s waist size, the more inflammation they have in their body which causes heart damage. This belly fat also increases triglyceride levels which contributes to plaque in the walls of the arteries rupturing.
Slimming down your midsection is essential to heart health. Losing as few as 5lbs can start making a difference when it comes to your heart. As people lose weight, they see improvements in their blood sugar levels, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and inflammatory factors.
Exercise and a healthy diet is the best medicine for a healthy heart. Losing 1lb per week is a realistic and healthy goal for people who are overweight or obese. For those who have a high BMI, seeking medical help for safe weight loss is recommended. Combining aerobic exercise and weight resistance training is the best way to safely lose weight and build muscle tone.
The link between obesity and heart disease is unquestionable. Losing weight by eating a diet of lean protein such as fatty fish and skinless chicken, lots of fruits and vegetables combined with low-fat dairy can get your waistline and your heart back in shape!