Weight Loss Minimizes Health Risk

Childhood Obesity_Generic
NBC Local Media

Obese children who lose weight by adulthood have no greater health risks than adults who have never been obese, according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine and picked up by MedlinePlus.

It's well known in the health community that people who were obese as children and became obese adults are at a much higher risk of various health problems, including type 2 diabetes, both higher blood pressure and cholesterol as well as narrowing of arteries. What is new about the study is that it found that the obese children who normalized their weight by adulthood showed no higher rate of these problems versus adults who were never obese.

The study, which was conducted by researchers in Finland and the United States, tracked data from 6,300 children from the U.S., Australia and Finland. The study started following children when they were, on average, 11 years old and continued for about 23 years.

For the study, children were considered obese if they had a body mass index of 25 or greater. Thirty or greater was considered obese.

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