(RxWiki News) Kids between 9 and 12 years old with a high body mass index (BMI) are more likely to develop risk factors for heart disease by the time they reach adolescence.
Obesity in childhood has long been linked to heart-disease factors later in life, but this is the first study, led by Professor Debbie Lawlor from the University of Bristol, to investigate the link between BMI, waist circumference and fat mass at age 9-12 and heart disease risk factors at age 15-16. These risk factors include high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol and insulin levels.
On a positive note, children who shed the extra weight by adolescence were shown to improve their heart-disease-risk profiles.
"Our findings highlight the need to shift the whole childhood population distribution of adiposity downwards and to develop interventions that safely and effectively reduce weight and improve cardiovascular risk factors in overweight/obese children,” said the researchers.