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Overweight children more likely to experience heart problems as adults

Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol

Individuals who were overweight as teenagers may want to consider cholesterol testing, as a new study has found that high body mass index (BMI) at age 17 may predict risk of heart disease, even in those who have other normal risk factors.

The research, which was conducted by scientists at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, examined the development of cardiovascular risk factors from adolescence to adulthood in 23,191 males. They tracked the medical records of study participants from age 17 to 42.

Researchers found that boys who had a high BMI were significantly more likely to experience heart problems as adults.

"Collectively, the study suggests that pediatricians caring for adolescents and physicians caring for young adults should be more aware of the need to monitor weight and blood pressure even when they are considered normal," explains Iris Shai, who led the investigation.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. The findings could help doctors identify patients who are at risk and suggest lifestyle changes that could reduce their chances of experiencing a heart event.

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