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Obese little ones ‘signing up’ for heart disease

Published On: Wed, Sep 26th, 2012 | Obesity | By IANS

Researchers have sounded warning bells on obese children as young as five-year-old who could be potential candidates for stroke or heart attack later in life.

Obese or overweight young children have already been found to have raised blood pressure, cholesterol and other factors that could elevate their chances of a stroke or heart attack by as much as 40 percent.

Researchers from the Oxford university said the unexpected findings were extremely worrisome. The study comes as New York City puts a ban on large-size sugary drinks to help tackle obesity and related health problems in the US, the British Medical Journal reports.

The team analysed the results of 63 studies involving 49,220 healthy children aged between five and 15 years. The studies measured weight and cardiovascular disease risk factors like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and blood glucose levels, the Telegraph reports.

“The relationship between obesity in children and cardiovascular risk factors such as blood pressure was much greater than we anticipated,” said study co-author Carl Heneghan, reader in evidence-based medicine at the University of Oxford.

“The magnitude of the effect of obesity upon increasing cardiovascular risk in children is deeply worrying in terms of their future risks of heart disease,” Henegahn added.

Reference:

Friedemann C ,Heneghan C ,Mahtani K ,Thompson M ,Perera R ,Ward AM. Cardiovascular disease risk in healthy children and its association with body mass index: systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ 2012;345:e4759

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