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University of Illinois Extension

What are the Risk Factors for Cardiovascular Disease?

Excess body weight

Having risk factors for a disease does not necessarily mean you will develop that disease. They just mean you are more likely than people not having those risk factors. Scientists identify these risk factors through large population-based studies that identify groups of people more or less likely to have certain characteristics. They may not always be true for individual people. For instance, you may know someone who is overweight, but doesn’t have diabetes or heart disease. However, for many people, having these risk factors is associated with a greater risk of developing cardiovascular disease:smoking is bad for your heart


This site was last updated June, 2014.
This is a source of information only, and is not medical advice.