Hypertension isn't only an adult condition. Science Daily reports that obesity may also increase the risk of high blood pressure in children.

Researchers from Kaiser Permanente Southern California examined the medical data of approximately 250,000 kids between ages six and 17 years old. The children's weights were also recorded and analyzed based on a gender-specific BMI-for-age growth chart.

Statistics revealed that those who were overweight had twice the risk of developing hypertension compared with their healthier counterparts. Those who were moderately obese had four times the risk, while those who were very obese had 10 times the risk of having high blood pressure.

Hypertension is no laughing matter, especially among the youth, as this condition may lead to several cardiovascular problems and kidney diseases.

Researchers recommend that children as young as three years old be checked for hypertension every doctor’s appointment. As the condition is asymptomatic, they also stress the importance of screening obese and overweight adolescents regularly. In addition, parents should live a healthy lifestyle which their children can emulate. Promoting proper diet and exercise at home may help kids build the proper mind-set with regard to overall wellness.

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(Photo by Cris Matei via sxc.hu)

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