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Agency recommends cholesterol testing for overweight children

Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol

Childhood obesity rates are higher now than at any point in history, and this is taking a major toll on the heart health of millions of young people. Because of this, a national agency is now recommending that more parents talk to their child's pediatrician about cholesterol testing.

The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute unveiled new guidelines for treated childhood obesity and cardiovascular concerns at a recent meeting of the American Heart Association. The recommendations state that overweight and obese young people should be tested for high blood pressure and cholesterol.

Also of note, the guidelines clearly state that these cardiovascular problems can follow a child into adulthood, putting them at a higher risk of heart attacks and strokes. There has previously been debate over whether cardiovascular risk factors in childhood directly translate to adult risk.

Finally, the recommendations state that about 1 percent of overweight children and adolescents will likely require treatment with pharmaceuticals to manage their cholesterol levels. In most cases, this will mean statin medications. The agency's report says that reducing cardiovascular risk factors in adolescence is the best way to protect individuals heart health in adulthood.  ADNFCR-2248-ID-800645784-ADNFCR

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