From a recently published study:
We analyzed data from 2,717 participants of the Health, Aging, and Body Composition Study. Adiposity measures were BMI, abdominal circumference, subcutaneous and visceral fat area, and total and percent fat mass. We determined the associations between the adiposity measures and 10-year incidence of AF using Cox proportional hazards models and assessed for their racial differences in these estimates.
In multivariable-adjusted models, 1-SD increases in BMI, abdominal circumference, and total fat mass were associated with a 13% to 16% increased AF risk (hazard ratio [HR] 1.14, 95% CI 1.02-1.28; HR 1.16, 95% CI 1.04-1.28; and HR 1.13, 95% CI 1.002-1.27). Subcutaneous and visceral fat areas were not significantly associated with incident AF. We did not identify racial differences in the associations between the adiposity measures and AF.
Body mass index, abdominal circumference, and total fat mass are associated with risk of AF for 10 years among white and black older adults. Obesity is one of a limited number of modifiable risk factors for AF; future studies are essential to evaluate how obesity reduction can modify the incidence of AF.
The evidence is mounting that obesity is a risk factor for atrial fibrillation. The extent to which weight loss intervention will impact atrial fibrillation is less clear.