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Ethn Dis. 2012 Summer;22(3 Suppl 1):S1-36-40.

CVD health factors and CVD risk factors: state of the science, emerging priorities part 2: obesity prevention.

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  • 1University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Division of Endocrinology; Metabolism, and Diabetes, CO 80045, USA. robert.eckel@ucdenver.edu


This report outlines a course of action to prevent obesity and stall the obesity epidemic now underway in the United States and other parts of the world. While African Americans and Hispanics are most vulnerable to obesity, the etiology of obesity shows that both genetic and environmental factors are responsible for overweight and obesity. Although obesity is familial, genes may not be the main culprit; and, in fact, explain < 20% of the obesity prevalence. Clearly, environmental factors (specifically those related to energy intake [diet] and energy output [physical activity]) are more often associated with obesity. Patients with multiple risk factors, including obesity, for cardiovascular disease need to be treated aggressively with lifestyle modifications and medications, when necessary, to affect positive cardiovascular health outcomes. However, a wiser, healthier approach to obesity is to prevent it from occurring in the first place.

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