Children who were otherwise considered healthy have been found to be at increased risk of metabolic disorders such as diabetes, finds a new study. The findings of this study are published in the journal of Acta Paediatrica.
More than a quarter of otherwise healthy six-year-old children may have metabolic risk factors that put them at increased risk for cardiovascular disease.
‘Waist circumference measurement was a better indicator of these metabolic changes compared to the currently used body mass index.’
Among 212 children in the study, 26 percent showed abnormal metabolic profiles, including insulin resistance, a sign of type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance was present in 28 percent of those with overweight or obesity and 5 percent of those with normal weight. Waist circumference was a stronger marker for metabolic alterations than body mass index.
"The study that included otherwise healthy full-term children shows that metabolic alterations within the scope of the metabolic syndrome, mostly due to overweight and obesity, are present already in preschoolers. Based on these findings, there is a need to optimize more effective prevention and intervention modalities before obesity is established," said lead author Dr. Emma Kjellberg, of Queen Silvia Children's Hospital, in Sweden.