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Extra Pounds May Offer Protection to Heart Failure Patients
Date:7/5/2012

chool of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles, said in a university news release. "Heart failure may prove to be one of the few health conditions where extra weight may prove to be protective."

About half of all heart failure patients are overweight or obese, the researchers noted. In heart failure, the heart can no longer pump sufficient blood to the rest of the body, the researchers said.

How excess weight protects heart failure patients remains unclear, according to researchers. But overweight and obese patients may be helped by increased muscle mass and metabolic reserves from fatty tissue, while increased body fat is also linked to higher serum lipoproteins, which may have anti-inflammatory properties.

The researchers added that symptoms of heart failure are often caught earlier in overweight and obese people. As a result, they may receive treatment sooner, which improves the likelihood of favorable outcomes.

The study was published online in the July 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

While this study found an association between excess weight and better outcomes for heart failure patients, it did not prove that the fat tissue itself, or that being overweight or obese, caused those patients to fare better.

More information

The American Heart Association provides more information on obesity.

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: University of California, Los Angeles, news release, July 3, 2012


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