High Cardiovascular Risk Found in Normal Weight Individuals
Just because you are slim does not mean you are free of cardiovascular risk.
A new study reveals that about a 33% of all people with a normal body mass index (BMI) had risks for heart disease, especially those of Hispanic and South Asian descent.
Researchers from Emory University, the University of California at San Francisco, and Northwestern University, studied white Americans, African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Chinese Americans, and South Asian Americans aged 44 to 84 years.
Their aim was to determine how many people with a normal body weight had risk factors for heart disease or diabetes, such as high sugar levels or high blood pressure, and if those rates differed among racial or ethnic groups.
As a result of their findings, the research team recommends screenings for heart disease and diabetes in members of certain race and ethnic minority populations, even if their weight is normal.
“The Key message for clinicians is that using overweight and obesity as the main criteria to screen for high blood pressure, high glucose, high triglycerides, or low HDL cholesterol will likely miss a substantial number of people who have high cardiometabolic risk but are of normal weight,” says Emory researcher Unjali Gujral, PhD.
“Therefore, while the United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends screening at younger ages in racial/ethnic minority groups, testing for cardiometabolic abnormalities in normal-weight and underweight members of these groups may also be an important consideration.”
According to the American Heart Association, cardiovascular diseases, including heart attack and stroke, account for 1 out of every 3 deaths in the US.
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