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Childhood obesity linked to high blood pressure in adulthood

Posted Sep 14 2013 5:21am





Posted by Neill Abayon

Children who are obese or overweight are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure in adulthood, compared with children of a healthy weight, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association High Blood Pressure Research Scientific Sessions 2013.

Researchers analyzed the blood pressure and growth of 1,117 healthy adolescents over a 27-year period from 1986.

Of the participants, 68% were at a normal weight, 16% were overweight and 16% were obese.

At adulthood, 119 of the participants were diagnosed with high blood pressure. Of these, 6% were normal weight as children, 14% were overweight, while 26% were obese as children.

These results show that obesity during childhood may increase the risk of high blood pressure four-fold in adulthood, and children who are overweight may double their risk of high blood pressure as adults.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and tripled in adolescents in the past 30 years.

Furthermore, in a CDC population-based sample of 5 to 17-year-olds, 70% of youths who were obese had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease, such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure.

However, a recent report from Medical News Today highlighted some positive statistics from the CDC, which showed that childhood obesity rates in the US decreased in 19 of 43 states and territories studied between 2008 and 2011. 

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