Without more data, it’s difficult to pin that HDL improvement on a single factor, said Robert Eckel, a professor of medicine at the University of Colorado and a former president of the American Heart Association. “It can’t be because we’re losing weight, because that’s still going up, but it could be statin use. It could be a result of the decline in smoking. Or a combination of factors,” Eckel said. “Regardless, the message here is a good one. And it reflects other things we’re seeing, like the number of heart attacks which have gone down, too.
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