Women whose weight fluctuates by more than 10 lbs. (4.5 kilograms) over the course of a decade, but who are not overweight, may have an increased risk of heart problems, a new study finds.
In the study, researchers looked at data from nearly 160,000 postmenopausal women who took part in the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI), a large study that began in 1991 and is aimed at looking at the major health problems women face after menopause. The scientists found that among the women whose weight was within the normal range, weight fluctuations of more than 10 lbs. were associated with a 66 percent increase in the risk of dying from coronary heart disease over an 11-year period, compared with the women who had weight fluctuations of less than 10 lbs. Coronary heart disease is a condition in which substances such as fat block the blood vessels to the heart, decreasing blood flow to the organ.
Interestingly, the association between weight fluctuations and heart problems was found only in women with weights in the normal range, and not in women who were overweight or obese, the researchers said. The study’s findings were presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2016. [Wonder Woman: 10 Interesting Facts About the Female Body]
“These findings were actually similar to what is known in the medical literature as the obesity paradox,” Dr. Somwail Rasla, the study’s lead author and an internal medicineresident at Brown University in Rhode Island, told Live Science. This term refers to the idea that people who are obese can seem just as healthy or even healthier, by certain measures, than those whose weight is within the normal range, a phenomenon that researchers are still investigating.
The study was observational, and so cannot establish cause and effect, Rasla said. And it’s unclear exactly how weight fluctuations and heart problems may be linked. However, it’s possible that weight fluctuations increase the risk of chronic inflammationin the body, which may in turn raise the risk of heart disease, the investigators said.
This research is the first long-term study to show an association between weight fluctuations and sudden cardiac death, the researchers said.
The women in the study ranged in age from 50 to 79 at the study’s start. Over the course of the study, about 55,000 of the participants had weight fluctuations of greater than 10 lbs. Also during the study, 2,526 of the women died from coronary heart disease.
The researchers’ further analysis showed that the greater the frequency of the women’s weight fluctuations, the higher was their risk for heart problems, Rasla told Live Science. In contrast, neither steady weight gain nor steady weight loss was associated with an increased risk of dying from coronary heart disease.
The takeaway, Rasla said, is that having a stable, healthy weight is better for your heart than having a fluctuating normal weight caused by yo-yo dieting. However, people who are overweight or obese should still be encouraged to lose weight in order to decrease their risk of diabetes and high blood pressure, he said. [The Best Way to Lose Weight Safely]
The study had a couple limitations, Rasla said. It relied on women’s reports of their own weight fluctuations, which could be inaccurate, he noted. The study was also limited to postmenopausal women, so more research would need to be done in order to determine if the effects also occur in younger women, or in men, Rasla said.
It’s not saying much about an awards show when a Drake commercial and a Selena Gomez acceptance speech are the highlights of the night.
In the opening of Sunday’s American Music Awards, supermodel co-host Gigi Hadid quipped, “Don’t worry, guys — tonight we don’t have to worry about the Electoral College.” But this show’s fan-elected awards didn’t make a great case for the popular vote, either. Some of the show’s best and worst moments…
HIGH: Selena Gomez’s speech
“Keeping it real” has never been the hallmark of this puffy-and-proud show, so Gomez jolted everyone to attention with an emotional acceptance speech that started by marking the anniversary of her public candor: “In 2014, this stage was actually the first time that I was authentically 100 percent honest with all of you. I think it’s safe to say that most of you know a lot of my life, whether I liked it or not. And I had to stop. Because I had everything and I was absolutely broken inside. And I kept it all together enough to where I would never let you down, but I kept it too much together to where I let myself down.
“I don’t want to see your bodies on Instagram,” she continued. “I want to see what’s in [your heart]. I’m not trying to get validation, nor do I need it anymore. All I can say from the bottom of my heart is I am so grateful that I have the opportunity to be able to share what I love every single day with people that I love. And I have to say thank you so much to my fans, because you guys are so damn loyal, and I don’t know what I did to deserve you. But if you are broken, you do not have to stay broken. And if that’s anything, whether you respect me or not, that’s one thing you should know about me, I care about people. And this is for you, thank you.”
Cynics might see the speech as self-aggrandizing, but for a minute and a half, at least, we could be sure we were seeing a human being onstage, and it was a welcome sight. Lady Gaga, beaming in the audience, seemed to approve the most.
LOW: Hosts Jay Pharoah and Gigi Hadid
Ahead of time, plenty of viewers were asking, “Why?” when it came to this particular couple as hosts. And no answer was forthcoming. Pharoah’s main calling card for the gig continues to be his Jay Z and Kanye impressions, but both of those inevitable bits were practically thrown away as afterthoughts, leaving little else for him to do except say, “Yeah, yeah, yeah!” Hadid’s Melania Trump impression was actually better than the Twitter universe gave it credit for — it takes one to know one — but she gave little reason to suspect little reason to think she’ll be back next year. Unless it’s possible that literally no one else wants the gig?
Gigi Hadid Tries out Impersonations
During the American Music Awards, host Gigi Hadid tried out her skills at impersonations. While hosting she impersonated soon to be first lady Melania Trump.
HIGH: Bruno Mars’s opening salute to Adidas
“24K Magic” wasn’t “Uptown Funk,” but if you love the ‘80s, either for its synths or sneakers, this was a reminder of a better time than the year that was about to be undeservedly celebrated.
Bruno Mars Opens the American Music Awards
During the American Music Awards, Bruno Mars opened the show and had an amazing performance. Clips courtesy dick clark productions.
HIGH: Lady Gaga, country-fied
Gaga continued her “hey, I’m organic now” tour of televised America, and while “Million Reasons” is probably not destined to be most of her fans’ favorite song, it did make for the show’s one token country music segment. On top of her shockingly non-shocking, nearly Middle American (albeit Middle-American-in-leather) look, the producers found a way to transplant an entire prairie onto the stage, which deserves some plaudits in itself. All that was missing was actual groundhogs.
Lady Gaga performs Million Reasons at the AMAs
Clips courtesy dick clark productions.
LOW: The Chainsmokers
Has any act as personal-charisma-challenged as the Chainsmokers ever had the song of the year before? For better or worse, this time, there was no icky PDA between Drew Taggard and Halsey, as there was three months ago on the MTV Video Music Awards. In fact, the two seemed to have given a “pretend you two have no chemistry at all” direction. Without the memorable display of underboob that Halsey gave the world at the VMAs, there was nothing to remember about this “Closer” at all.
HIGH: Sting gets political without getting political
He’s crafty, this one. While some other folks (like Green Day; more on them later) threw blatant shade at the incoming president, Sting used his lifetime award acceptance speech to basically sub-tweet about Trump, repeatedly describing himself as a proud “immigrant” and saying “the spirit of welcome and inclusion… is what made this country the greatest country in the world.” Oh, and he performed, and well. We did cock our heads, though, at Robert Downey Jr.’s odd introduction, which described the Sting-meister as “one of the most talented and giving humans ever to walk the earth” and comparing his catalog to a classroom, promising, “Later in the semester you will likely learn to care about the fate of mankind.”
Sting Wins the AMA Merit Award
After wining the Merit Award, Sting performed a medley of songs new and old. Clips courtesy dick clark productions.
LOW: Niall Horan, One Directioner-gone-folkie
“Substituting tonight in the role of Ed Sheeran is….”
HIGH: Drake’s commercial
The bad news: This year’s AMAs flogged a “premiere” that turned out to be an Apple Music commercial unapologetically integrated right into the body of the show. The good news: At least it was a highlight of the show. The bad news: It was a highlight of the show. Let’s be honest: However crass this breakdown of the line between content and advertising might have been, it was a kick seeing Drake grunt out “Bad Blood” while lifting weights… but not as big a kick as it would’ve been seeing the 13-time nominee actually perform live, something you know the producers must have begged for.
Drake’s Apple Commercial
Apple debuted a new commercial featuring Drake at the American Music Awards.
HIGH: Green Day’s rock revival
After a lot of years in which there wasn’t a single rock band on either the AMAs or the VMAs, this show had three — count ‘em! three! — rock acts on the telecast. Foremost among them was Green Day, who actually found a way to channel the politics the hosts swore we wouldn’t be getting into a song, chanting, “No Trump! No KKK! No fascist USA!” But more than that, here was a band getting back to its roots with a blast of energy that seemed to take it for go-for-broke granted that their radio smash days are behind them and they can just punk it up again.
Green Day Makes a Political Statement
During a performance at the AMAs, Green Day added the lyrics ” No Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA” to their song Bang Bang. Clips courtesy dick clark productions.
LOW: Justin Bieber phones it in, literally and figuratively
Not very live, in any way, from Switzerland.
LOW: DJ Khaled shouts, and shouts, and shouts
DJ Khaled bragged about having the #1 song in the country, which puzzled a lot of viewers who looked up — and posted to social media — that “Do You Mind” currently sits at #39 on the Billboard Hot 100. But that bragging wasn’t as big a sin as his constantly outshouting the three guests he had onstage… which maybe isn’t that hard when his mic is live and some of the others are clearly lip-synching. OK, one more sin: leaving Nicki Minaj stranded onstage for minutes at a time with nothing to do.
LOW: twenty one pilots’ SNL rerun
Not that many weeks ago, the duo did a galvanizing rendition of their Suicide Squad song on Saturday Night Live with a strong string section backing. How to outdo that recent memory? With, uh, green footlights and smoke blasts. Hard to tell whether to blame the act or the production designers for the lack of imagination, but “We’ve seen this before, only better” is not the feeling you want to leave millions of viewers with. They also wore full face masks, and while we know that’s part of their live show, between that and the Weeknd performing from a tunnel that resembled Superman’s ice cave, we had to wonder if some of the better acts at the AMAs wanted to establish some sort of plausible deniability that they were even on the show.