The Atlantic

'Obesity Has To Be Treated As a Disease--Not a Lifestyle Issue'

Despite high obesity rates, Kansas City heart surgeon says steps are underway "to reduce heart mortality 20 percent by 2020."
Source: National Journal

This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal

As a Kansas City, Mo., cardiologist, Willie E. Lawrence Jr., 56, sees a connection in many of his patients between obesity and hypertension, conditions that can lead to heart disease.

Dr. Lawrence, an accomplished interventional cardiologist, now advocates for programs and approaches that may be more effective.

According to released by the Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health, African-American women are 80 percent more likely to be obese than non-Hispanic white women. Forty-four percent of African-Americans have high-blood pressure. are nearly twice as likely to suffer diabetes as whites, yet only one in five African-American women believes she is personally at risk for cardiovascular

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