Large Neck May Indicate Heart Risks

5 years ago

A new study finds that the person’s neck thickness may provide as many clues about their chance of developing heart problems his or her waist measurement.

Researchers in the Framingham Heart Study discovered that even those with relatively small waistlines seemed to be at and the higher chances of heart disease when they had larger necks.  The research defined risk as having higher blood sugar levels or ‘abnormal’ amounts of “good” cholesterol.

The researchers examined more than 3,300 study participants by having an average age of 51, and located evidence that health depended this is not on how
fat a person was, but where their fat was located, said professor Jimmy Bell from the MRC Clinical Sciences Center.

In this study, the typical neck circumference was 34.2cm for women, and 40.5cm for males, and as neck circumference grew, so did the danger factors for heart disease.

For every 3cm rise in neck circumference, men had 2.2 milligrams less of good cholesterol per deciliter of blood (mg/dl) and women 2.7mg/dl.

Good cholesterol, also referred to as high-density lipoprotein (HDL), takes cholesterol from the cells and back to the liver, where it is broken down.

Measurements of under 40mg/dl in men and 50 mg/dl in women are viewed to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

The researchers discovered that neck size made no difference to levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), also referred to as “bad cholesterol”, which could cause harm.  However, it did affect blood sugar levels so that for each 3cm much more of neck circumference men had 3.0mg/dl many women 2.1mg/dl of LDL.

Normal fasting blood glucose levels are below 100 mg/dl, and better levels are viewed to become an accurate indicator of future heart disease.

And as the risk was higher separate from waistline, it had been compounded for those who had both a bigger waist and neck circumference.

The scientists speculated that a thick neck can be a “crude measure” of upper body fat, something associated with heart risks.

“That which you don’t want is fat around your liver or heart, which can occur even though you look fine on the exterior. Dieting isn’t what you ought to shift this it’s exercise,” a BBC News report quoted professor Bell as saying.

The outcome was presented to a meeting of the American Heart Association.

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