Chicago, Dec. 4 (Reuters): People leading a sedentary lifestyle who develop symptoms of diabetes, a bloated waistline and other unhealthy conditions are at a sharply higher risk of dying from a heart attack, researchers said on Tuesday.
The 11-year study of 1,209 Finnish men, who were between 42 and 60-years-old and disease-free at the start, found that those with the condition, known as metabolic syndrome, were at least three times more likely to suffer a heart-related death than middle-aged men without the syndrome.
Having the syndrome also doubled their risk of dying from other causes.
Some one-third of middle-aged American men and women have metabolic syndrome, characterised by a combination of insulin resistance and elevated blood sugar levels, obesity, unhealthy cholesterol levels and high blood pressure, the report said.
The syndrome is a growing global problem, study author Hanna-Maaria Lakka of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge wrote in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
“By themselves, these risk factors are often considered unimportant and may be overlooked, but together they pose serious risk and increase the risk of having heart disease, stroke and even dying from these diseases,” Lakka said.