Although we have a very different outlook on obesity than we did 10 years ago, it is still a heavy issue today.
We now have plus size sections, extra wide shoes, and big & tall fashions, but what exactly did it fix? We’ve even made mantra’s that “big is beautiful”, “she’s voluptuous”, “thick”, “PHAT” (pretty, hot, and tempting).
However, a recent study, showed that excess belly weight, and specifically a so-called “apple shape”, raises a woman’s risk for heart attack even more than overall being obese.
While obesity raises heart attack risk in both sexes, women with bigger waists and waist-to-hip ratios have greater odds of a heart attack than men who have a similar apple-shaped body, a large British study finds.
“Our findings show that looking at how fat tissue is distributed in the body – especially in women – can give us more insight into the risk of heart attack than general measures of obesity, such as body mass index,” said lead researcher Sanne Peters.
Body mass index (BMI) is a commonly used measurement based on height and weight.
Having a pear-shaped body – a smaller waist with excess weight mostly around the hips – isn’t thought to raise heart attack risk to the same degree.
Currently, no medical treatment focuses on excess belly fat, said Peters, a research fellow in epidemiology at the University of Oxford’s George Institute for Global Health.
However, “more intensive screening for the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes among those with an apple shape might help to prevent heart disease, especially in women,” Peters said.
According to the World Health Organization, 40 percent of women worldwide are