Children: At Higher Risk
For High Blood Pressure
The Number Of Children With High Blood Pressure Is On The Rise
To me this is alarming news. Researchers have noticed an unexpected increase in the number of children at risk for developing blood pressure related problems.
This shatters all preconceptions that hypertension is just for the aged.
A recent survey of children and adolescents showed increases in systolic blood pressure (the top reading indicating the pressure at the moment the heart beats) compared to previous studies of North American young people. What is the suspected reason for this increase in blood pressure among youths?
It is an epidemic of obesity in children.
Blood pressure ranges are calculated differently for children than they are for adults. High blood pressure (hypertension) is defined in an adult as a systolic pressure of 140 mm Hg or higher and/or a diastolic pressure of 90 mm Hg or higher. Normal blood pressure in children varies depending on their height as well as their age. In children ages 6–12, up to 125/80 mm Hg is considered normal. For youth ages 12–15, 126/78 mm Hg is normal, and for ages 16–18, 132/82 mm Hg is normal.
As in adults high blood pressure in children directly increases the risk of coronary heart disease
possibly leading to heart attack and stroke. Obese children are known to have higher blood pressure. That means that overweight children are taxing their…
- Vascular systems
… at a much earlier age than hypertensive adults.
Children are not as active as they used to be. Physical activities have been traded for time in front of the computer or video games. Home cooking of healthy meals is rare and takeout has become a way of life.
Blood pressure is greatly affected by the foods we eat. This goes for our children as well. Children simply do not get the exercise and nutrition they need. Therefore more and more children are preparing to be the hypertensive adults of tomorrow.
If that is not bad enough diabetes among children is reaching outrageous levels in our first word cultures. Try scheduling time for your children to get outside more. Pay attention to their diet and add a high quality dietary supplement to their meals. Sitting in front of the television or computer is not good for mind or body. Children are not mature enough to make these decisions for themselves. It is up to their parents.
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