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Is body mass index before middle age related to coronary heart disease risk in later life?

Owen, C.G., Whincup, P.H., Orfel, L., Chou, Q-A., Rudnicka, A.R., Wathern, A.K., Kaye, S.J., Eriksson, J.G., Osmond, C. and Cook, D.G. (2009) Is body mass index before middle age related to coronary heart disease risk in later life? International Journal of Obesity, 33, (8), pp. 866-877. (doi:10.1038/ijo.2009.102).

Record type: Article


Objective: Although obesity beginning early in life is becoming more common, its implications for coronary heart disease (CHD) risk in later life remain uncertain. We examined the relationship of body mass index (BMI) before 30 years of age to CHD risk in later life.
Design: Systematic review of published studies relating BMI between age 2 and 30 years to later CHD risk. Studies were identified using Medline (1950 onwards), Embase (1980 onwards) and Web of Science (1970 onwards) databases (to November 2007).
Measurements: Relative risks (RR) of CHD associated with a 1 standard deviation (s.d.) higher BMI (most based on a narrow age range at measurement) were extracted by two authors independently, and combined using random-effect models.
Results: A total of 15 studies provided 17 estimates (731 337 participants, 23 894 CHD events) of the association of early BMI to later CHD outcome. BMI in early childhood (2–6 years, 3 estimates) showed a weak inverse association with CHD risk (RR 0.94, 95% CI 0.82–1.07). BMI in later childhood (7 to o18 years, 7 estimates) and BMI in early adult life (18–30 years, 7 estimates) were both positively related to later CHD risk (RR 1.09, 95% CI 1.00–1.20; RR 1.19, 95% CI 1.11–1.29 respectively). However, there was considerable statistical heterogeneity between study estimates. Results were unaffected by adjustment for social class and/or cigarette smoking, blood pressure and/or total cholesterol, in studies with available data. Gender and year of birth (1900–1976) had little effect on the association.
Conclusions: BMI is positively related to CHD risk from childhood onwards; the associations in young adults are consistent with those observed in middle age. Long-term control of BMI from childhood may be important to reduce the risk of CHD.

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Published date: August 2009
Keywords: body mass index, coronary heart disease, child/children, adolescent, young adults


Local EPrints ID: 68998
ISSN: 0307-0565
PURE UUID: d27a5b98-9a33-49f3-9dfd-0f4075a2f9a9
ORCID for C. Osmond: ORCID iD

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Date deposited: 14 Oct 2009
Last modified: 19 Jul 2017 00:14

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Author: C.G. Owen
Author: P.H. Whincup
Author: L. Orfel
Author: Q-A. Chou
Author: A.R. Rudnicka
Author: A.K. Wathern
Author: S.J. Kaye
Author: J.G. Eriksson
Author: C. Osmond ORCID iD
Author: D.G. Cook

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