Monitoring of blood pressure in overweight and obese children in Shandong, China

Ying-Xiu Zhang, Shu-Rong Wang
Annals of Human Biology 2011, 38 (5): 603-7

BACKGROUND: Obesity and hypertension are common health problems in children and adolescents. Several studies have reported that obesity is associated with elevated blood pressure (BP) in both adults and children. However, there are few data of population-wide blood pressure monitoring in overweight and obese children and adolescents.

AIM: The present study examined the prevalence of overweight, obesity and relative high BP among children and adolescents and compared the level of blood pressure among children and adolescents with different weight status in Shandong, China.

SUBJECTS AND METHODS: A total of 8,555 students (4,325 boys and 4,230 girls) aged 7-18 years participated in this study. Height, weight and BP of all subjects were measured, body mass index (BMI) of adolescents was calculated from their height and weight and prevalence of overweight and obesity were obtained according to the screening criteria for overweight and obesity in Chinese students using BMI.

RESULTS: The overall prevalence of overweight, obesity and relatively high BP were 14.31%, 10.64% and 24.14% in boys and 8.75%, 5.70% and 22.39% in girls, respectively. An increasing trend was observed in systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP) and pulse pressure (PP) from the normal weight group, to the overweight and obese groups.

CONCLUSION: There is a high prevalence of overweight, obesity and relatively high BP among children and adolescents in Shandong, China. The present findings emphasize the importance of prevention of overweight and obesity in order to prevent future related problems such as hypertension in children and adolescents.

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