The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic exposes unexpected cardiovascular vulnerabilities and the need to improve cardiometabolic health. Four cardiometabolic drivers—abnormal adiposity, dysglycemia, dyslipidemia, and hypertension—are examined in the context of COVID-19. Specific recommendations are provided for lifestyle change, despite social distancing restrictions, and pharmacotherapy, particularly for those with diabetes. Inpatient recommendations emphasize diligent and exclusive use of insulin to avert hyperglycemia in the face of hypercytokinemia and potential islet cell injury. Continuation of statins is advised, but initiating statin therapy to treat COVID-19 is as yet unsubstantiated by the evidence. The central role of the renin-angiotensin system is discussed. Research, knowledge, and practice gaps are analyzed with the intent to motivate prompt action. An emerging model of COVID-related cardiometabolic syndrome encompassing events before, during the acute phase, and subsequently in the chronic phase is presented to guide preventive measures and improve overall cardiometabolic health so future viral pandemics confer less threat.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2024-2035
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American College of Cardiology
Issue number17
StatePublished - 27 Oct 2020


  • COVID-19
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • adiposity
  • angiotensin-converting enzyme 2
  • cardiometabolic
  • cardiovascular disease
  • chronic disease
  • diabetes
  • dysglycemia
  • dyslipidemia
  • hypertension
  • lifestyle
  • lipids
  • obesity
  • prevention
  • statin


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