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September 14, 2005

It's High Blood Pressure That Triggers Heart Disease in Obese

Topics: Medicine

According to a team of researchers at the University of Pennsylvania, the real culprit in cardiovascular mortality among the obese is the hypertension that usually goes along with being overweight. They observed that cardiovascular risk is not clearly increased unless hypertension is present. If there is no hypertension present, there does not appear to be an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

However, a troubling find is that in men and women who were both overweight and hypertensive - there was a doubling of the risk for fatal heart attacks and strokes. So what's the best preventative besides a rapid loss of weight which can be medically risky? Consider moderate weight loss and exercise, which can help reduce blood pressure and lower cholesterol, thereby reducing the cardiovascular risk associated with being overweight.

A spokesman for the reserchers, Athanases Benetos, M.D., Ph.D, says that "the finding that cardiovascular risk among overweight people significantly increased only in the presence of hypertension, "underscores the importance of hypertension as a mechanism through which obesity causes cardiovascular disease.""

A few key points that serve as take-home messages from the article are:

1. When weight was combined with high blood pressure the combination was lethal.

2. Overweight participants with diabetes -- but no hypertension -- did not increase the risk of cardiovascular mortality

3. When hypertension and hypercholesterolemia were present there was a dramatic increase in mortality

4. The best way to reduce risk "treatment that targets both blood pressure and weight reduction."

How effective are traditional dietary and exercise interventions for weight loss?

Nutraceuticals, Vitamins, Antioxidants, and Minerals in the Prevention and Treatment of Hypertension.

Childhood overweight: an expanding problem.

Clinical outcomes and cost-effectiveness of strategies for managing people at high risk for diabetes.

Dieting And Gallstones

Posted by Richard at September 14, 2005 4:17 PM

This is interesting. I am overweight, have a normal blood pressure, and my blood cholesterol is in the normal range, except that the last test showed a high level of the bad cholesterol.

I have a feeling that by not looking at all of the factors the researchers are missing something. You see, I have arthritis. I was told it was osteoarthritis and secondary enthesitis, but I am now waiting for a follow up test to see whether that rheumatoid factor was a false positive. I have a friend who has arthritis and like myself, it took 10 years before the rheumatoid factor showed up in the blood test results, and she has a problem with her weight too.

Posted by: Maggie4Life Author Profile Page at September 15, 2005 3:40 AM

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