In a new study, researchers found being overweight or obese is linked to a higher risk of blood clots in the body.
The effects even exist in children. The finding suggests parents should pay attention to their kids’ body weight and prevent being overweight and obesity.
The research was conducted by a team at Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark.
Venous thromboembolism is one of the most common vascular diseases. It is a condition in which a blood clot forms in a deep vein. It usually occurs in the leg
If a blood clot travels through the body into the lungs, it can block blood flow and cause a life-threatening health condition.
One risk factor of blood clots is obesity.
In the study, the team aimed to see how being overweight in childhood linked to blood clot risk in adults.
They analyzed the BMI of more than 300,000 Danish children ages 7 to 13 born between 1930 and 1989.
After that, they examined the same children’s health records as adults.
The researchers found that children with the highest BMI had up to 50% of the higher risk of developing a blood clot as an adult.
In addition, overweight children who got to a healthy weight by age 13 had the same risk for blood clots as children with a healthy weight.
The team suggests that their findings support the need to teach parents and children the importance of a healthy diet, physical activity and the harm of childhood obesity.
They hope their results should help children get and maintain a healthy weight to prevent heart disease in adulthood.
The findings also suggest that getting a healthy weight by age 13 could reduce the blood clot risk.
The study is the first to test how childhood obesity may affect the risk of blood clots as an adult.
Future work needs to test if childhood obesity is directly responsible for blood clots. Other factors, such as genes, may also play a role in raising the risk for blood clots.
The lead author of the study is Dr. Jens Sundbøll, an epidemiologist at Aarhus University Hospital in Denmark.
The study is published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.
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