Investigators reported a new study that reveal shorter persons could more likely be at risk of heart disease.
A five feet tall person are said to be 30% more at risk to heart disease than those 5 feet and 6 tall, said Nilesh Samani, a cardiology professor at the University of Leicester in England.
“This idea that shorter stature is associated with coronary artery disease is something we would laugh about,” stated Dr. Michael Lauer, director of cardiovascular sciences at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. “We would think about it as yet another example of epidemiology going amok.”
Dr. Samani and his colleagues figured that if there was a real connection, genetic variation that produce short stature would also be at a greater risk of the disease.
Studies were made until a small link was found showing that genetic variants that involves shorter stature seem to be connected with slightly higher levels of LCL which is a form of cholesterol that heightens risk to heart disease including a slightly elevated levels of triglycerides and blood fats.
Still, the increased risk does not all stem from it , researchers think that the rest may be a result from poorly understood mechanisms, regulated by height genes that control the development of the blood vessels and bones.
Questions that seemed hard to answer may only be resolved through studies of huge DNA databases that tell the power of genetics.
“The Achilles’ heel of epidemiology has been the inability to distinguish between associations that are correlations and those that are causal,” Dr. Lauer stated. It is believed that it can only be answered through randomized controlled clinical trials which is costly and time consuming.
Although the fact remains that a randomized trial cannot determine if height has a connection with heart disease risk. Yet genetic variations are spread at random in populations ,where genes are not influenced by lifestyle or environmental impact that need to be considered as researchers examine data they collect by merely monitoring populations. In a sense, we are nature’s random experiments, Dr. Lauer had said.