Doctors Blame Obesity Epidemic Since 1999 in Ages 35 to 54
by Marilynn Marchione
The Associated Press
New Orleans


Strokes have tripled in recent years among middle-aged women in the U.S., an alarming trred that doctors blame on the obesity epidemic.

In a study led by Dr. Amytis Towfoghi, a neurology specialist at the University of California-Los Angeles, nearly 2% of women ages 35 to 54 reported suffering a stroke in the most recent federal health survey, from 1999 to 2004. Only about half a percent did in the previous survey, from 1988 to 1994.

Women‘s waistlines are nearly two inches bigger than they were on a decade earlier, and that bulge corresponds with the increase in strokes, researchers said.

In addition, women‘s average body mass index, a commonly used measure of obesity, rose from 27 in the earlier survey to 29. They also had a higher blood sugar levels.

The portion of women with abdominal obesity rose from 47% in the earlier survey to 59% in the recent one.

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