Weight Loss: Waiting to Shed Excess Pounds Does Not Increase Health Risks
Overweight children who wait until adulthood for w are not more likely to face a higher risk of obesity-related health problems, an analysis of four studies involving children and adults in the United States, Australia and Finland suggests, according to Reuters Health.
While the findings don't prove weight loss in itself will eliminate the extra risks, they do show that overweight or obese children are not automatically doomed to have higher rates of diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease.
"There is hope for overweight and obese children," chief author Dr. Markus Juonala at the University of Turku told Reuters Health in a telephone interview. "If they manage to become non-obese adults, then the risks of these outcomes — diabetes, hypertension, early atherosclerosis — are quite similar to those who have been normal weight all their lives. I think that's quite a positive message."
"It's been thought that if you're an obese kid, it's all done," Juonala added. "But based on these findings what really matters is what you are at as adult."
At the start of the studies, 12 percent of the children were overweight or obese, and two percent were obese. By adulthood, those figures had increased to 55 percent and 21 percent, respectively.