To Your Health
December, 2015 (Vol. 09, Issue 12)
Keep the Weight Off – It Could Save Your Life
By Editorial Staff
Being overweight / obese is an established risk factor for life-threatening chronic health conditions including diabetes and heart disease, but recent evidence suggests too much weight may also put people at risk for an acute and wholly irreversible condition – sudden death.
According to the study, women who are overweight at age 18 have a higher sudden death risk as adults, namely from a cardiac (heart) event, and even more disturbing, the risk is independent of the woman's current weight.
Researchers followed 72,484 women from 1980 to 2012; over that time period, 454 women suffered sudden cardiac death. Compared to women with a body mass index (BMI) of 21 to 22.9 at age 18, women with a BMI of 23 to 29.9 had a 33 percent higher risk for sudden cardiac death. Women with an even higher BMI (30-35.9) had twice the risk; while women with a BMI exceeding 35 had nearly four times the risk.
Healthy weight is called "healthy" for a reason, a point underscored by this and other studies. These findings also emphasize the need to teach healthy eating, exercise and other lifestyle behaviors early in life. Talk to your doctor for more information.