Friday, January 07, 2011

Study shows prevention works for healthy cholesterol

Health campaigns targeted at teens could help reduce their risk of heart problems as adults. A study published in Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine found that those with high cholesterol at 15 could normalize it by their mid-30s. Participants had levels of cholesterol and other blood fats measured in 1985 when they were aged 9, 12 or 15. They were measured again between 2004 and 2006, an average of 20 years later. Of those participants who had high-risk cholesterol levels in their youth, those who stopped smoking or lost weight became low-risk in adulthood, while those who increased their body weight or who started smoking were more likely to maintain those high-risk levels 20 years Researchers say this research gives a very clear example of why we need to invest more in adolescent health and make it a higher priority. "It is clear that young people's lifestyle choices have a long term impact on their health and it is cost effective and sensible to work with them to encourage healthy habits.We should all be eating five portions of fruit and veg a day. And, most importantly, the message is don't smoke."

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