(2004) Body size and cardiovascular risk factors in a preschool population.
Williams CL, Strobino BA, Bollella M, Brotanek J.
SummaryData on weight, height, blood pressure, and blood lipids were obtained for 1215 children entering New York Head Start preschools from 1995‑1997. In this population, 17% were overweight and 15% were obese; the risk was greatest in Hispanic children. Overall, 13% had high blood pressure. African‑American children were at increased risk of elevated blood pressure but had a more favorable lipid profile (high‑density lipoprotein cholesterol level and low triglycerides level) than white or Hispanic children. Body size was a significant predictor of elevated blood pressure, low high‑density lipoprotein cholesterol, and increased triglycerides. The association between obesity and blood pressure was evident in white and Hispanic children only. Neither ethnicity nor obesity was associated with total cholesterol level. Obese preschoolers had approximately three times the risk of having high systolic blood pressure and twice the risk of low high‑density lipoprotein cholesterol level compared with nonobese children, indicating that at‑risk populations can be identified and primary prevention begun at a young age.