Adolescent obesity linked to early mortality from cardiovascular diseases

June 28, 2017, The Endocrine Society
This is an image of a weight scale. Credit: CDC/Debora Cartagena

While there is solid evidence that adolescent overweight and obesity are associated with coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke, less is known about the association between body mass index (BMI) and rarer cardiovascular diseases. A new large-scale, 45-year Israeli study published in the Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that higher BMI as well as BMI in the accepted normal range in late adolescence may be related to a higher risk of death in mid-adulthood from non-coronary non-stroke cardiovascular diseases such as fatal arrhythmia, hypertensive heart disease, cardiomyopathy, arterial disease, heart failure and pulmonary embolism.

Obesity, the most common nutritional disorder in industrialized countries, is associated with an increased mortality and morbidity of cardiovascular . This study specifically looked at BMI and attributed to cardiovascular diseases other than CHD and stroke.

"Our findings show that adolescents with BMI values well within the currently accepted normal range may still be at future risk of cardiovascular diseases," said one of the study's authors, Gilad Twig, M.D., Ph.D. of the Medical Corps of the Israel Defense Forces. "This is important because while CHD and stroke mortality of adults younger than 50 have declined in most western countries in the last two decades, non-CHD and non-stroke mortality has increased."

Researchers from the Israel Defense Forces, Sheba Medical Center and Hadassah Medical School in Israel analyzed data collected from 2,294,139 adolescents ages 16-19 in 1967 and followed them until 2011. Between 1981 and 2011, 32,137 deaths were recorded of which 800 were attributed to non-coronary, non-stroke cardiovascular deaths, whereas 3,178 deaths were attributed to cardiovascular in total.

"Overweight and obesity at adolescence were tightly associated with increased risk for all study outcomes. The range of normal BMI is relatively broad and we also found here that adolescents with BMI at the high-normal end had higher risk than those in the low-normal end. Data shows that "optimal" BMI for 17 years old is at the low-normal range," Twig said. "Additional studies are needed to confirm these results in order to re-visit the currently accepted BMI range in adolescents."

Explore further: Increased BMI during adolescence predicts fatal cardiovascular events in adulthood

More information: Gilad Twig et al, Adolescent Body Mass Index and Cardiovascular Disease-specific Mortality by Midlife, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (2017). DOI: 10.1210/jc.2017-00329

Related Stories

Increased BMI during adolescence predicts fatal cardiovascular events in adulthood

April 14, 2016
Overweight and obesity in adolescents have increased substantially in recent decades, and currently affect a third of the adolescent population in some developed countries. This is an important public health concern because ...

Over 20 percent of maternal mortality in illinois due to CVD

April 18, 2017
(HealthDay)—More than one in five maternal deaths in Illinois in 2002 to 2011 were attributable to cardiovascular disease, according to a study published in the May issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Review links anxiety disorders to risk of cardiovascular events

August 15, 2016
(HealthDay)—Anxiety disorders are associated with a range of cardiovascular events, according to a meta-analysis published in the Aug. 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

Central obesity ups mortality across BMI range

April 25, 2017
(HealthDay)—Central obesity is associated with increased risk of mortality even in normal-weight individuals, according to a study published online April 24 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Higher risk of cardiovascular events with weight fluctuations

April 6, 2017
(HealthDay)—Fluctuation in body weight is associated with higher mortality and a higher rate of cardiovascular events—independent of traditional cardiovascular risk factors—in patients with coronary artery disease, ...

Substantial differences between US counties for death rates from ischemic heart disease, stroke

May 16, 2017
Although the absolute difference in U.S. county-level cardiovascular disease mortality rates have declined substantially over the past 35 years for both ischemic heart disease and cerebrovascular disease, large differences ...

Recommended for you

Antidepressant use may contribute to long-term population weight gain

May 24, 2018
Researchers at King's College London have found that patients prescribed any of the 12 most commonly used antidepressants were 21% more likely to experience an episode of gain weight than those not taking the drugs, (after ...

Bid to beat obesity focuses on fat that keeps us warm

May 24, 2018
A new technique to study fat stores in the body could aid efforts to find treatments to tackle obesity.

Can excess weight in toddlers cause brain drain?

May 23, 2018
(HealthDay)—Extra pounds in early childhood may do more than put a child's physical health at risk—they might result in a slightly lower IQ, new research suggests.

Early-life obesity impacts children's learning and memory, study suggests

May 23, 2018
A new study by Brown University epidemiologists found that children on the threshold of obesity or overweight in the first two years of life had lower perceptual reasoning and working memory scores than lean children when ...

Some calories more harmful than others

May 15, 2018
While calories from any food have the potential to increase the risk of obesity and other cardiometabolic diseases, 22 nutrition researchers agree that sugar-sweetened beverages play a unique role in chronic health problems. ...

Fat cells seem to remember unhealthy diet

April 23, 2018
It only takes 24 hours for a so-called precursor fat cell to reprogram its epigenetic recipe for developing into a fat cell. This change occurs when the cell is put into contact with the fatty acid palmitate or the hormone ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.