Smoke Exposure Predicts Heart Disease and Type 2 in Kids

Exposure to tobacco smoke is associated with metabolic syndrome in young people, according to New York researchers.

Metabolic syndrome predicts future coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes, and it is being seen more often now in young people as a result of the obesity epidemic in this country. The researchers suggest that tobacco smoke may contribute to insulin resistance in this syndrome. To prove their point, they studied the association of environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure and active smoking with the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome in U.S. adolescents.

Data from 2,273 subjects, 12 to 19 years of age, were examined. Among adolescents, 5.6 percent met the criteria for metabolic syndrome.

“Prevalence increased with tobacco exposure: 1.2 percent for nonexposed, 5.4 percent for those exposed to ETS and 8.7 percent for active smokers,” write the researchers. “In adolescents at risk for overweight and in overweight adolescents, a similar relationship was observed: 5.6% for nonexposed, 19.6 percent for those exposed to ETS and 23.6 percent for active smokers.”

Circulation, August 9, 2005

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