Heart disease refers to several disease conditions of the heart. The most common type of heart disease, coronary artery disease can lead to heart attack, heart failure, angina (deep chest pain) and arrhythmias (abnormal heart beats and rhythms).

Coronary artery disease is caused by a build-up of plaque (cholesterol/fat deposits) in the walls of the arteries that supply blood to the heart.

When plaque builds up in these arteries, the arteries narrow with subsequent reduced blood flow to the heart muscle.  A heart attack occurs when an artery is entirely blocked by plaque or when plaque breaks off and clogs a coronary artery. Obesity’s link to abnormal cholesterol, abnormal/high triglycerides (unhealthy fat deposits), increased inflammation, high blood pressure and diabetes, directly increases one’s risk of having heart disease. By losing weight, one can greatly reduce his or her risk of developing heart disease.