Obesity hurts young girls more than it hurts boys, say researchers at the University of California.
Obese teen girls have a higher risk of high blood pressure than boys, which can lead later in life to heart disease and stroke. In fact, obese teen girls’ risk of hypertension is 9 times higher than that of girls who have a healthy weight, while for obese boys it was 3.5 times higher than boys within the normal weight range. Preventing a lifetime of serious health risk is yet another reason to help our children get to and maintain a healthy weight.
Medical News Today reports that the difference between obese boys and girls high blood pressure risk may be due to their levels of activity: “Obese girls are 50% to 60% less physically active than obese boys.”
For the study, obesity was characterized as a body mass index (BMI) of 30 of higher. The easiest way to calculate your teen’s BMI is to use the CDC’s handy BMI Calculator for Children and Teens. If he or she is obese, there are several programs you could consider having your whole family follow, include First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move.