Obesity has overtaken smoking as the leading cause of premature heart attacks, which means health club owners, personal trainers and other members of the fitness industry will need to take an active role in combating America’s obesity epidemic. According to a study from Dr. Peter A. McCullough, two-thirds of Americans have excess body fat, so members of the medical field expect to see an explosion in the rate of heart attacks among people in their 40s and 50s, and women in particular. “[This study] should be a wake-up call to all individuals who have gained weight since age 18 to re-evaluate their lifestyles and take immediate action to bring body weight down into the normal range,” McCullough told Reuters. Another study from British and Danish researchers has also found a direct link between having a high body-mass index and the risk of developing heart disease, HealthDay News reported. Anyone with a BMI of 30 or more is considered to be obese. What does this mean for the fitness industry? Regular physical activity is a key method of fighting obesity. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that adults complete at least two hours and 30 minutes of aerobic activity each week and do muscle-strengthening activities at least two days per week. Fitness facilities will need to make sure that they provide commercial workout equipment that will help clients struggling with obesity to meet their weight-loss goals. For example, TRUE Fitness commercial treadmills are not only extremely durable and reliable, but are also user-friendly. This way, even gym members who aren’t working with personal trainers can make progress toward their goal weight. By encouraging clients to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regularly, fitness facilities can help combat obesity and reduce the risk of premature heart attacks in people who are struggling with their weight.