ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
Using Music and Sports to Improve Kids' Asthma
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
The Zen Way to Pain Relief
Maggots as Good as Gel in Leg Ulcer Treatments
Acupuncture Eases Side Effects of Head, Neck Cancer Treatments
ANIMAL CARE
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Beware of Dog Bites
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Vitamin K Doesn't Slow Bone Loss
Bone Loss Stable on Restricted Calorie Diet
Fruits and Veggies May Strengthen Bones
CANCER
Papaya Could Be a Cancer Fighter
Want to Stop Cancer? You Can, Experts Say
Many Cancer Survivors Don't Adopt Healthy Lifestyle
CAREGIVING
Are Hospital Mobile Phones Dialing Up Superbugs?
Hospital Practices Influence Which Moms Will Breast-Feed
With Age Comes Greater Risk of Hypothermia
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
Grapefruit-Heavy Diet Helped Spur Dangerous Clot
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
COSMETIC
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
DENTAL, ORAL
Holistic Dentistry-My View
Obesity Boosts Gum Disease Risk
Gum Disease Treatment Doesn't Cut Preterm Birth Risk
DIABETES
Abnormal Heart Rhythm Boosts Death Risk for Diabetics
Coffee, Tea Might Stave Off Diabetes
Out-of-Control Blood Sugar May Affect Memory
DIET, NUTRITION
Occaisonal Dieting May Cut Breast Cancer, Study Says
'Organic' May Not Mean Healthier
Compound in Red Wine Fights Ravages of Age
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Gene Explains How High-Fructose Diets Lead to Insulin Resistance
Smog Standards Need Tightening, Activists Say
Exhaust From Railroad Diesel Linked to Lung Ailments
EYE CARE, VISION
It's a Whole New Outlook for Cataract Patients
Nutrient-Rich Diet Lowers Risk of Age-Related Eye Disease
Eye Disease, Cognitive Decline Linked in Study
FITNESS
Research Confirms How Valuable A Healthy Lifestyle Can Be
Exercise in Adolescence May Cut Risk of Deadly Brain Tumor
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
Have Fun This Summer, But DO Be Careful
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Deployment Takes Toll on Army Wives
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
More Steps a Day Lead to Better Health
Chinese Red Yeast Rice May Prevent Heart Attack
Coffee Is Generally Heart-Friendly
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Working Intensely Early on May Help Autistic Kids
MEN'S HEALTH
Low Iron Levels Cut Cancer Risk in Men With PAD
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
MENTAL HEALTH
Consciousness Helps the Mind and Body Work Together
Estrogen May Help Men's Hearts
Shop 'Til You Drop: You May Feel Better
PAIN
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Pregnant Women Exposed To Certain Pollutants Could Lower Childs IQ
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
SENIORS
Friends, Not Grandkids, Key to Happy Retirement
For a Healthier Retirement, Work a Little
Laughter Can Stimulate a Dull Appetite
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Women Who Run May Benefit From Extra Folic Acid
Acupuncture May Help Relieve Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Caffeine in Pregnancy Associated With Low Birth Weight Risk
Add your Article

Obese People Seem to Do Better With Heart Disease

By Ed Edelson
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- The excess fat that leads people to develop heart disease can help them fight against the condition's worst effects, a review of cardiac studies shows.

It's the "obesity paradox," said Dr. Carl J. Lavie, medical director of cardiac rehabilitation and prevention at the Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, and lead author of the review, which appears in the May 26 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

"Obesity is a major problem that contributes significantly to increased risk of heart disease and mortality," Lavie said. "But once you get high blood pressure, blocked heart arteries and peripheral arterial disease, the obese patients do better than the lean patients. The obesity paradox has been written about for years, but still many doctors are not aware of it."

His report looked at data from 40 studies of 250,000 people with heart disease, Lavie said. He wanted not only to remind doctors of the paradox, but also to warn them and the general public that it offers no excuse for being fat, he said.

Some physicians have misinterpreted the evidence to mean that obese people with heart disease should not be encouraged to lose weight, Lavie said.

"Obesity causes many of the known risk factors, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, and it is an independent risk factor on its own," he said. "The patients with heart disease who do the best are the obese who lose weight."

There are several possible explanations for the paradox, Lavie said.

One is that obese people visit physicians earlier than others because they develop symptoms, such as fatigue and breathing problems. Heart disease is more treatable if identified early.

It's also conceivable that something in the excess fat cells of obese people might have a protective value, Lavie said.

"People who have more weight can have more reserve ability to fight disease," he said. "Take breast cancer. Obesity may help cause breast cancer, but a 200-pound woman might be able to fight breast cancer better than a 100-pound woman because she has more metabolic reserve."

It's well-known that obesity leads to heart disease, and that's a big part of the paradox, Lavie said. "These people wouldn't have developed heart disease in the first place if they weren't obese," he said. "A thin person is getting it [heart disease] for a different reason, so he or she is getting a worse form of the disease, getting the disease despite being thin."

Lavie worries that people might get the wrong idea from his report. "Obesity in the United States is a major problem," he said. "It is increasing in skyrocketing proportions. It is a major contributor to the epidemic of heart disease. We don't want people to be hearing that obesity is good."

More information

Obesity in the United States and the medical problems associated with it are described by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



SOURCES: Carl J. Lavie, M.D., medical director, cardiac rehabilitation and prevention, Ochsner Medical Center, New Orleans; May 26, 2009, Journal of the American College of Cardiology

Last Updated: May 18, 2009

Copyright 2009 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.

More articles at www.eholistic.com