Overweight children are more at risk of hypertension

The relationship of overweight to the risk of hypertension concerns not only adults but also children, according to a new Spanish scientific study.

Overweight children aged four years have a double risk of elevated blood pressure at the age of six, which in the long run increases the risk of heart attack and stroke, according to new research data.

The study examined the relationship between overweight and high blood pressure in 1,796 four-year-old children who were re-evaluated two years later. Blood pressure was measured at both time points, as did the Body Mass Index (squares of height in meters) and the waist circumference.

The results of the study, published in the journal of the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, show that children (regardless of gender) who were overweight and obese between the ages of four and six years were overweight based on the BMI (Body Mass Index) , were approximately two and a half times more likely to have high blood pressure. In particular, children who experienced either recent or chronic obesity in the abdomen, were at higher risk of elevated pressure by 2.81 and 3.42 times respectively.