What Weight Gain Does to Your Heart
It’s common around the holidays to start packing on the pounds. Unfortunately, those tight pants can have some serious consequences for your heart. Extra weight can put you at greater risk for a wide range of heart problems including heart disease, hypertension, heart attack, heart failure, poor circulation, leg and ankle swelling, artery disease, and more. Let’s take a look at the mechanisms behind why a few pounds mean big problems.
Why Does Extra Weight Hurt Your Heart?
When you are larger, your heart has to pump more blood through your body. Our bodies are incredibly efficient and will try to adapt to changing circumstances. The heart is a muscle, and when you work out a muscle, it grows in size; the heart also grows in size because it is working harder. The increased volume of blood can lead to higher blood pressure, which is one of the biggest causes of heart disease. Even without high blood pressure, the lifestyle that often precedes obesity can increase your cholesterol and weaken your heart. A poor diet and little exercise can put you at big risk for heart problems.
A study published in the American Medical Association found that moderately overweight women were twice as likely as slender women to develop coronary heart disease. It also found that those who are clinically obese had a quadruple risk of heart disease. There are countless additional studies on the increased risk of heart problems with weight gain.
It is important that if you have gained weight, that you speak with your doctor about how to adapt your diet and lifestyle to put yourself at lower risk for heart issues.
Contact Brookhaven Heart today at 631-654-3278 to schedule an appointment with one of our heart specialists.