Apple shape increases asthma risk

  • Olivia Fens

Women with large bellies are at a higher risk of developing asthma, a new study has found.

Regardless of weight, scientists have found that women who carry weight in the abdomen (known as having an apple-shape) have a higher risk of developing asthma.

In the study of more than 88,000 women, researchers from the Northern California Cancer Center in the US found that women who were overweight were 40% more likely to develop asthma.

And this risk only increased as the women’s weight increased – obese women were twice as likely to develop asthma and extremely obese women were more than three times as likely to develop the condition.

However, the researchers found that women of normal weight but with a large waist (over 88cm) were three times more likely to develop asthma compared to women with small waists.

Abdominal obesity has also been linked to certain cancers, such as kidney cancer and colon cancer.

The researchers concluded: “This study confirms the association between excess weight and asthma severity and prevalence, and showed that a large waist was associated with increased asthma prevalence even among women considered to have normal body weight.”

The study was published in the journal Thorax.

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