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Weight and Coronary Artery Disease - Topic Overview

There is a strong association between being overweight and the risk for coronary artery disease (CAD).1 Being overweight increases your chances of having risk factors for CAD. These include high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

Losing weight and staying at a healthy weight can help lower your risk for CAD. Weight loss frequently improves other risk factors related to CAD, such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and may also help control diabetes.

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Clogged Arteries (Arterial Plaque)

Arteries are blood vessels that carry blood rich in oxygen throughout your body. They go to your brain as well as to the tips of your toes. Healthy arteries have smooth inner walls and blood flows through them easily. Some people, however, develop clogged arteries. Clogged arteries result from a buildup of a substance called plaque on the inner walls of the arteries. Arterial plaque can reduce blood flow or, in some instances, block it altogether. Clogged arteries greatly increase the likelihood...

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If you have CAD, your doctor will likely suggest staying at a healthy weight or losing weight if you need to. Your doctor can help you find a weight loss program that can work for you.

What is the importance of body fat distribution?

The distribution of body fat in part may determine the negative impact of obesity on your health. Specifically, the relationship between your waist measurement and your hip measurement, called your waist-to-hip ratio, might play a role in your risk for health problems. If your waist-to-hip ratio is high, it means you are carrying most of your body fat around your abdomen. Fat deposits, especially around the abdomen area, may be an important independent risk factor for diabetes and coronary artery disease.

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 06, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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