Will being overweight increase your heart disease risk? Learn about the connection between watching your weight and your heart health.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. and obesity cases are growing exponentially in the country. Both share many risk factors, including diabetes and high blood pressure (hypertension). To learn how these two are connected and how it affects you, keep reading below.
Heart Disease and Your Weight
Being overweight increase your risk of heart disease because it increases your risk of other conditions that lead to heart disease such as high cholesterol, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and sleep apnea. However, obesity alone is also a risk factor for heart disease, even if you don’t have these other conditions. This may be due to the increased inflammatory markers that happen in people with obesity, which can lead to atherosclerosis, heart attacks, or heart failure.
Many of the conditions that develop from obesity (hypertension, high cholesterol, etc.) are “silent.” In other words, you may not know you have these conditions, which makes them all the more dangerous.
Obesity and Heart Disease Risk Factors
Obesity can change how your body processes your cholesterol and, as a result, can increase your levels. Specifically, it may result in increased triglycerides, “bad” LDL cholesterol, and a decrease in “good” HDL cholesterol.
The excess weight can also result in hypertension because your heart muscle has to pump harder. Because of the extra strain, your blood vessels may stiffen, which affects your circulation. Your kidneys can also be affected by this.
Another condition associated with obesity is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), which can lead to snoring, pauses in breathing, and more. OSA is closely related to heart disease, with 40 to 60 percent of people with heart disease suffering from sleep apnea.
Managing Your Weight
While it may seem hard, the truth is that you can make a difference in your health by losing as little as 3 to 5 percent of your total body weight. If you want to lose or manage your weight, then you need to focus on three areas: diet, physical activity, and medications.
A heart-healthy diet consists of fruits, vegetables, fiber, whole grains, and healthy fats while limiting or avoiding red meat, processed meat, fried foods, trans fats, and sugary foods. When it comes to exercise, experts recommend most adults get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week. You should also talk to your doctor to see if you need medication to help you on your weight loss journey.
In addition, if you want to give your heart an extra boost during this time, consider taking L-arginine Plus. As a heart supplement, its ingredients promote better circulation, blood pressure, cholesterol, and more. Give your heart the support it deserves by maintaining a healthy weight and taking L-arginine Plus.