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Fluctuations in weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and/or blood sugar levels in otherwise healthy people may be associated with a higher risk of heart attack, stroke and death from any cause compared to people with more stable readings, according to new research in the American Heart Association’s journal Circulation.

This is the first study to suggest that high variability of these risk factors has a negative impact on relatively healthy people. The study is also the first to indicate that having multiple measures with high variability adds to the risk.

Compared to people who had stable measurements during an average 5.5 year follow-up period, those with the highest amount of variability (in the upper 25 percent) on all measurements were:

127 percent more likely to die;
43 percent more likely to have a heart attack;
41 percent more likely to have a stroke.

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