Overweight, Obese a Majority in Ontario

OTTAWA, Sept. 10 (UPI) — Seventy percent of adults living in Ontario are either overweight or obese and tend to have high blood pressure, increasing their heart risk, researchers say.

Study leader Frans Leenen of the University of Ottawa Heart Institute says the findings are the latest analysis from the Ontario Survey on the Prevalence and Control of Hypertension — the first comprehensive assessment of high blood pressure in Canada since 1992.

The study, conducted by the Heart Institute with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario, examined 2,552 Ontarians ages 20-79. The study finds 52 percent of people age 60 and older had high blood pressure but that the majority of those people received treatment.

“Obesity is rapidly increasing in Canada because we are eating far more than our bodies require. We know better than ever that even being overweight creates other problems such as diabetes and high cholesterol levels and thereby endangers cardiovascular health,” Leenen says in a statement. “Public health strategies to reduce the growing epidemic of obesity would also reduce the burden of high blood pressure and other negative effects leading to heart disease.”

The findings are published in the American Journal of Hypertension.

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