Objective: Childhood and adolescent overweight, defined by body mass index (BMI) are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease in later life. Abdominal adiposity may be more important in associations with cardiovascular diseases but waist circumference (WC) has been rarely studied in children. We studied associations between BMI and WC and blood pressure (BP) and cholesterol in 12-year-old children and prospectively changes in BMI or WC status between age 8 and 12 years and BP and cholesterol at age 12. Study Design: Weight, height, WC, BP and cholesterol concentrations were measured in 1432 children at age 12 years. Linear regression was used to study the associations between high BMI and large WC (>90th percentile) and BP and cholesterol. Results: Systolic BP was 4.9 mmHg higher (95% (CI 2.5, 7.2) in girls and 4.2 mmHg (95%CI 1.9, 6.5) in boys with a high BMI. Large WC was also associated with higher systolic BP in girls (3.7 mmHg (95%CI 1.3, 6.1)) and boys (3.5 mmHg (95%CI 1.2, 5.8)). Diastolic BP and cholesterol concentrations were significantly positively (HDL cholesterol negatively) associated with high BMI and large WC, too. Normal weight children with a history of overweight did not have higher blood pressure levels or adverse cholesterol concentrations than children that were normal weight at both ages. Conclusion: A high BMI and large WC were associated with higher BP levels and adverse cholesterol concentrations. WC should be taken into account when examining cardiovascular risk factors in children.

dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0051801, hdl.handle.net/1765/62278
PLoS ONE
Department of Pediatrics

Bekkers, M.B.M, Brunekreef, B, Koppelman, G.H, Kerkhof, M, de Jongste, J.C, Smit, H.A, & Wijga, A.H. (2012). BMI and Waist Circumference; Cross-Sectional and Prospective Associations with Blood Pressure and Cholesterol in 12-Year-Olds. PLoS ONE, 7(12). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0051801