Qataris in heart risk from diabetes prevalence - report

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The majority of patients in Qatar suffering from heart conditions are below 55 years old, a new study revealed, with diabetes topping the list of risk factors associated with heart-related diseases and strokes in the Gulf state.

According to the report by Hamad Medical Corporation and Weill Cornell Medical College, men comprised the majority of heart disease cases with 30 percent registered obese and 40 percent overweight. The five risk factors studied were diabetes, hypertension, high level of cholesterol, smoking and obesity.

“We found that diabetes increased the risk by over four fold and was the strongest preventable risk factor for heart attack and stroke. High blood pressure was the second major preventable risk factor for stroke and an important factor for heart attack. Low amounts of physical activity increased the risk of heart attack and stroke by approximately 80 percent, while smoking increased the risk of heart attack two-fold,” said lead author Dr Paul J Christos, a lecturer in public health in the division of biostatistics and epidemiology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. The study was conducted between 2006 and 2008

Qatar was named the fattest nation in the world last year with half of all adults being obese.

The Gulf has some of the highest prevalence of obesity and diabetes in the world, with the International Diabetes Foundation last year forecasting that about 20 percent of the population is afflicted by the disease.

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