I’m not going to hang myself out there by saying that only overweight people have sleep apnea, but there is plenty of evidence to uphold the idea that most cases of obstructive sleep apnea are caused by excess weight or obesity.

While central sleep apnea is caused by dysfunction of the brain, obstructive sleep apnea, especially in adults, is normally caused by either a collapsing of the airway due to weight or a reshaping of the airway due to fat deposits. Both issues are tied to being overweight.

I know from having worked with hundreds of liffe insurance clients with sleep apnea that there is certainly, in most cases, a link between build and sleep apnea. I have often been told by the clients that their doctors have told them, lose the weight and the sleep apnea will go with it.

I think this may again be an issue where doctors are talking about the primary issue, sleep apnea, and not educating the clients about the collateral health issues that, if left unchecked, can begin to take hold.

Problems such as snoring spouse syndrome are no fun for either spouse, but other health issues related to sleep apnea, several of which involve serious cardiac issues such as high blood pressure, arrhythmia and even heart failure, can lead to one spouse not being there at all.

Bottom line. If your sleep apnea is caused by weight and your doctor hasn’t given you all of the facts about the road you’re heading down, educate yourself. Do something about it for your health and your marriage, and yes, for your life insurance rates.