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Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol
About two-thirds of severely obese children have at least one risk factor for poor heart health, according to new research. These findings suggest that parents of kids who have weight problems may want to consider having them undergo a lab test to screen for things such as high cholesterol and elevated blood sugar.
Childhood obesity is becoming more common around the world. In order to investigate the cardiovascular health of children with this condition, a team of scientists from The Netherlands collected health information on more than 300 severely obese individuals aged 2 to 18, submitted by their pediatricians.
Results showed that 67 percent of subjects had had at least one cardiovascular risk factor. Among those aged 12 and younger, that rate was 62 percent.
More than one-half of subjects had either hypertension or high levels of bad cholesterol. Meanwhile, 14 percent had elevated fasting blood glucose levels. Just under 1 percent had type 2 diabetes.
"Internationally accepted criteria for defining severe obesity and guidelines for early detection and treatment of severe obesity and [underlying ill health] are urgently needed," the researchers said.
Parents who are concerned about their children's heart health should consider a lab test for the different risk factors.
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