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The worldwide epidemic of obesity, fostered by the modern lifestyle characterized by the lack of physical activity and an energy-dense diet, has contributed to create an unprecedented condition in human history where a majority of overfed individuals will soon surpass the number of malnourished.1 Obesity-associated disorders, such as diabetes mellitus, an atherogenic dyslipidemia, and hypertension, have undoubtedly contributed to create an atherosclerosis-prone environment and thereby the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD), a leading cause of mortality in Westernized societies. A growing body of evidence indicates that obesity is a heterogeneous condition in which body fat distribution is closely associated with metabolic perturbations and, thus, with CVD risk.2 In this regard, accumulation of visceral (intra-abdominal) fat is strongly associated with insulin resistance and with a typical atherogenic dyslipidemic state.3
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