Childhood Obesity and High Blood Pressure

Hypertension has historically been an issue that affects adults. Complications from high blood pressure can result in serious health problems such as heart disease and stroke. Early detection through regular physical examinations and preventing the disease by living a healthy lifestyle contribute to lowering and maintaining optimal blood pressure levels. An issue of greater concern is that children are increasingly being diagnosed with hypertension, likely a result of rising rates of obesity among children. Parents and professionals who work with children have recognized this connection between obesity and hypertension, and are beginning to focus on weight loss in Chandler.

The BMI or body mass index compares an individual’s height and weight to determine whether their weight is normal, underweight, overweight or obese. Studies are increasingly determining that the recognized cut-off of the 85th percentile for overweight children greatly increases the risk of developing hypertension or prehypertension. This risk triples once the threshold of the 85th percentile is crossed as compared with normal-weight children. As alarming as these statistics are to families and practitioners, the prevalence of high blood pressure in the general population has made treating the disease more accessible and successful with a range of patients.

Weight loss management in Chandler is a great way to help your child develop healthier eating habits. Research has shown that being in the 85th percentile for height and weight results in a dramatic increase of hypertension rates which continues to rise with BMI. Likewise, any decrease in a child’s BMI would result in a sharply decreased risk for developing high blood pressure. Emphasizing both to the child and parents the importance of maintaining a normal weight through the consumption of healthy foods such as whole grains and fresh fruits and vegetables combined with regular exercise can have a real impact in a child’s future health.

 

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