Obesity is not always a risk factor, but it can be a big contributor to one of the traditional risk factors. Those include high LDL cholesterol, low HDL cholesterol, high blood pressure, family history, diabetes, smoking, being post-menopausal for women and being older than 45 for men.
Obesity can be a major factor in diabetes, for example. So controlling your weight through proper nutrition and exercise can reduce your chance of acquiring type 2 diabetes. And doing so can also reduce your LDL and increase your HDL.
Weight management and exercise are also known to control high blood pressure, reduce depression and possibly reduce risk of cancer.
More Answers from Alan Seifer, MD