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Home / Weight Loss / Larger waist, hips may raise women’s heart attack risk

It is known that obesity raises the risk of heart attack in both men and women, but recent research published in the Journal of the American Heart Association finds that for women, the size of their hips and waist may be the best indicators of risk.

A higher body mass index (BMI) is known to raise the risk of myocardial infarction, or heart attack, and by and large, this association seems to be the same for both men and women.

But as a measurement, BMI says nothing about body fat distribution and does not differentiate between fat types — such as visceral fat versus subcutaneous fat.

Visceral fat is so named because it builds around one’s internal organs, such as the pancreas, liver, and intestines. This type of fat is more closely linked with insulin resistance and other cardiometabolic risk factors.

Sex may influence the type of fat that a person is more predisposed to. Studies have revealed, for instance, that men are more likely to accumulate visceral fat, whereas women tend to have more subcutaneous fat.

Now, a new study zooms in on body fat distribution and the risk of heart attack. Researchers led by Sanne Peters — of the George Institute for Global Health at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom — studied the body size and shape of almost half a million adults to locate the best predictors of heart attack risk.

Full Story: Medical News Today