Half of Obese Kids Have Metabolic Syndrome

WebMD is reporting findings by University of Miami researchers showing that by age 12 to 14, half of obese children have metabolic syndrome, a group of risk factors that predicts heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Even at ages 8 to 11, as many as 9.5% of obese children already have metabolic syndrome. That means they have at least three of these risk factors: abnormally large waist size, high blood-sugar levels, low levels of HDL “good” cholesterol, high blood fat levels, and high blood pressure .

My Take?

In my book, SuperSized Kids, How to protect your child from the obesity threat, I discuss the many ways in which childhood and adolescent overweight and obesity can worsen both the quality and quantity of a youngster’s life.

In fact, children with metabolic syndrome will likely become diabetic in 10 years or less – and many of these kids will go on to develop premature heart disease.

In other words, they are quite likely to enter adulthood facing an entire life of chronic disease.

Physicians are reporting that they are seeing more and more teens with high blood pressure and dangerously high levels of blood fats. 

There is, however, a window of opportunity for obese and overweight kids – even those who already show signs of heart disease. Here’s what I suggest:

1) Pick up a copy of my book, SuperSized Kids: How to protect your child from the obesity threat.

2) Take the Family Fitness test at DrWalt.com (for free).

3) Consider trying (for free) my 8-Week Family Fitness Plan.

4) If you are an adult, ask your physician to include a fasting blood sugar at your next preventive medicine exam.

5) If your child or teen is overweight or obese, ask their doctor to check them with a two-hour glucose tolerance test (shown in children and teens to be much more diagnostic than a fasting blood sugar).

 

2 thoughts on “Half of Obese Kids Have Metabolic Syndrome

  • Hi Dr. Walt:

    Love your blogs.

    An interesting study is out in the June issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nurtrition. I blog on it on 6/30. There was a meta-analysis of past studies comparing intake of sugar-sweetened drinks to BMI in children. They found no association. It goes contrary to my thoughts that weight gain equals calorie intake minus calories expended, and that the sugar-added is just empty, unnecessary calories. I look forward to additional studies to see if this can be confirmed. If it is, I think that puts more emphaisis on exercise and good nutrition. Your “8-week Family Fitness Plan” is a great example.

  • Ruth

    Adolescent obesity is an incredibly worrying subject to me a I was overweight as a child and found it so hard to deal with the taunting and lack of confidence it left me with. So I was intrigued by your post “Half of Obese Kids Have Metabolic Syndrome” and actually suggested to my daughter that she read it too.

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