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Waistline Better Indicator of Heart Disease than Weight, New Study Shows

Apr 05, 2016 05:29 AM EDT
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A recent study showed that waistline is a better indicator of heart failure risk than weight.
(Photo : Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

A new study presented at the American College of Cardiology conference in Chicago revealed that waist circumference is a better indicator of heart disease than the body mass index (BMI).

According to a Health Day report, researchers found out that people with an apple-shaped body, who carry more weight around the belly, are more susceptible to heart diseases than people with a pear-shaped body, who carry more weight in the hips.

Researchers also discovered that having a progressive waist circumference worsens the function of the heart's left ventricle, the primary pumping chamber of the heart.

Dysfunction of the left ventricle, according to Medical News Today, may cause the blood backing up in the lower extremities and the lungs, increasing the risk of cardiac arrest and heart failure.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 5.1 million people in the U.S. experience heart failure. People who are diagnosed with the condition die within five years of diagnosis.

The study, conducted by researchers from Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Salt Lake City and John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, examined 200 men and women with diabetes that have not yet shown any symptoms of any coronary diseases.

Using echocardiography, researchers evaluated the heart functions of each participant.

The researchers found out that the progressive weight circumference, even independent of total body weight and BMI, is closely related to the dysfunction of the heart's left ventricle.

The collaborative study also revealed that abdominal obesity has more adverse effect on men than women.

They advised men to maintain a waistline of 40 inches or less, while women should try to keep their waist circumference at 34 inches or less.

According to Healthy Living, a healthy diet, aerobic exercises, yoga poses and proper standing and sitting posture are good ways to lose excess fat around the belly.

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