Study suggests high blood pressure could begin in childhood

One of the main indicators of heart disease, the world’s leading cause of death, is now high blood pressure, or hypertension. Despite the fact that hypertension is typically linked to adults, a recent study has shown that it can actually start in childhood.

A systolic blood pressure (SBP) of 140 mmHg or a diastolic blood pressure (DBP) of 90 mmHg or higher is considered high blood pressure.

According to the study, obese kids and teens had a higher chance of developing high blood pressure as adults (aged 50-64 years).

According to the researchers, this information can assist parents in preventing obesity in children throughout their development years, which may minimize the risk of heart disease caused by high blood pressure later in life. The new results, which will be presented at this year’s European Congress on Obesity (ECO) in Venice, Italy (12-15 May), are the result of a Swedish population study.

It showed that high blood pressure in adult men was caused by a high childhood BMI (body mass index at age 8 years) and a bigger BMI change throughout puberty (BMI at 20 years minus childhood BMI), which were independent of one another.

Lead author Dr. Lina Lilja of the University of Gothenburg in Sweden stated, “Our results suggest that preventing overweight and obesity beginning in childhood matters when it comes to achieving a healthy blood pressure in later life.”

The Dr also added, “Children and teenagers living with overweight or obesity might benefit from targeted initiatives and lifestyle modifications to reduce the substantial disease burden associated with high blood pressure in later life from diseases such as heart attacks, strokes, and kidney damage.”