Your Heart and Obesity

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According to the Cleveland Clinic’s 2019 Heart Health Survey, even though a vast majority of Americans (88%) understand the connection between a healthy heart and maintaining a healthy weight, and three-quarters (74%) agree that improving their heart health is a major motivator in wanting to lose weight – they aren’t doing enough about it. Instead of taking responsibility, the majority of Americans surveyed (53%) complain that their metabolism is working against them, but is it?
 
When you consider that 40 percent of American adults and nearly 20 percent of adolescents are obese – these are the highest rates ever recorded for the U.S. according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overall, 70.7 percent of Americans are either overweight or obese, meaning that an unhealthy weight has become the norm for Americans. 
 
And, obesity is linked to much more than heart disease…but according to the Cleveland Clinic’s 2019 Heart Health Survey Americans’ knowledge of this is limited, putting them at risk. Nine-in-ten (87%) Americans fail to link obesity to cancer and eight-in-ten (80%) don’t connect obesity with atrial fibrillation. While they correctly link being overweight or obese with high blood pressure (59%) and type 2 diabetes (55%), many are unaware of other conditions it is linked to, such as high LDL cholesterol levels (54%), coronary heart disease (57%) and heart failure (58%).
 
What’s more, there is an education gap and many misconceptions on what exactly excess weight or obesity does to America’s hearts – with a majority of Americans not realizing that fat tissue releases inflammatory substances, which harm the heart (60% are unaware), and that obesity leads to structural changes in the heart (70% are unaware).
 
The survey also found that while doctors are trusted advisors when it comes to nutrition, most Americans haven’t broached the subject of weight loss with their physicians with only about a quarter (28%) of people have told their doctor they would like to lose weight and only a fifth (22%) have discussed heart health in relation to their weight with their doctor.
 
 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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