Wednesday 28 September 2016

Teens face same heart risks as a 60-year-old

Published 23/09/2016 | 02:30

Health Minister Simon Harris with Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone and Junior Health Minister Marcella Corcoran Kennedy. Photo: Colin O'Riordan
Health Minister Simon Harris with Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone and Junior Health Minister Marcella Corcoran Kennedy. Photo: Colin O'Riordan

Unfit, overweight Irish teenagers are at the same risk of heart-related disease as 60-year-olds, according to shocking new research.

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A study of Transition Year students in the greater Dublin area has shown that they have the cardiovascular age of someone 40 years older or more.

Professor Niall Moyna of Dublin City University (DCU) described the findings as "frightening".

Most of the unfit students were overweight or obese, 85pc had high blood pressure; more than 90pc had high levels of fat in the blood; 62pc were a step away from diabetes; and 87pc had a vascular age of 55-60.

It comes as the Government's new strategy to tackle obesity was launched - including mandatory calorie counts on restaurant menus. Food companies which tender to provide meals in schools will, meanwhile, have to ensure they are subject to "portion control."

Irish Independent

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