Medhealth Review

Weight Gain May Lead to Potential Health Issues Among Children

New research hints at the possibility of high blood pressure in overweight children. Interestingly, we may have to worry about even a little weight gain beyond normal levels. The study is proof enough that obesity is undoubtedly a critical factor in causing high blood pressure in children.

The study results were released online on March 14 by JAMA Network Open. 

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The most common dietary issue affecting kids and teens in the US is obesity. In America, 16–18% of children and adolescents are overweight, and 21-24% are obese;

The findings are derived from a five-year-long study. Between 2008 and 2015, the researchers considered the electronic health records of around 800,000 Southern California kids, ages 3 to 17. 

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Body mass index (BMI), a measurement of body fat based on height and weight, was compared between baseline and five-year follow-ups by the researchers. 

“This study underscores the need for medical professionals to reevaluate how we correlate and educate about health risks across the spectrum of weight in growing children. Obesity may be the most important risk factor for hypertension during childhood,” informs Dr. Poornima Kunani, Paediatrician, Senior study author, and researcher.

As the next step, the team identified those who had excessive blood pressure as well. 

Obesity is hardly a new problem. A decade-old report confirms. According to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and the CDC, about 17 percent of children and adolescents between 2 to 19 were obese then, a number that has tripled since 1980.

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