New study links obesity and asthma

LOS ANGELES Researchers at the /*Palo Alto Medical Research Institute*/ in California looked at about 4,500 men and women from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey for 2005-2006. About a third were reported to be overweight and another third were listed as obese.

The researchers observed that 41% had some type of allergy, while 8 percent had asthma. The researchers say the likelihood of asthma rose as the body mass index increased and waist size expanded. The study concluded the risk of asthma more than tripled for the most obese individuals compared to normal weight people.

Scientists say more studies are needed before they will be able to determine the definite reason accounting for the higher risk of asthma among obese individuals.

The study appears in the May 7 edition of the medical journal Allergy.

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