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Yet another good reason to keep the weight off, especially if you’re a woman. The report comes from last weeks meeting of the American Stroke Association. Basically, the report looked at results from an ongoing national health study and it found that obesity is clearly linked to more strokes in women ages 35 to 54. Researchers found that between 1999 and 2004, almost 2% of women in this age group reported having a stroke. This is almost a 1.5% increase in strokes in women the same age group between ’88 and ’94. Now, the researchers found the increase in stroke risk was mostly associated with abdominal obesity. Women’s waists averaged nearly 1.6 inches longer in the later years of the study. Their average body mass index had also increased. Now, to cut through the jargon, as women age and gain weight, the risk of stroke increases unless there’s a conscious effort to keep it off.

By: Brian McDonough, M.D., FAAFP