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More Teens at Risk for Heart Disease

Teens today are at a greater risk for cardiovascular disease than in the past, researchers say. They analyzed data on more than 3,300 kids between ages 12 and 19 and learned that more than a third of all normal-weight teens, nearly half of all overweight kids, and two thirds of all obese kids had at least one risk factor for heart disease. Because teenage blood pressure and cholesterol levels hardly changed over the past decade, most of the heart disease risk in the teens was due to prediabetes and diabetes, the researchers say. The prevalence of both conditions (which were calculated as a single entity) jumped from 9 percent in 1999–2000 to 23 percent in 2007–2008—even though obesity rates leveled off. The researchers warn, however, that the increase in diabetes may be misleading. Diabetes status was determined by a fasting plasma glucose test, which may give a high blood glucose result if kids don't actually fast or if they're going through puberty, which can cause insulin resistance.
Source: Pediatrics, published online May 21, 2012



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