9 out of 10 Punjab kids lack heart healthy lifestyle; study
Kanwar Inder Singh/ royalpatiala.in
In a first-of-its-kind study, a heart-healthy lifestyle is found missing in 9 out of 10 children from Punjab & Delhi.
The study by Dr. Rajneesh Kapoor, a Punjab Rattan Honorary and vice chairman of interventional cardiology at Medanta Hospital, examined 3200 children from the age group of 5-18 years through a questionnaire-based assessment on parameters that affect cardiovascular health.
Giving details of study during a press interaction here on Friday, Dr. Rajneesh Kapoor said that each participant was given a cardiovascular health score based on their responses to BMI, physical activity time, bedtime hours, sleep time hours, dietary habits, and nicotine exposure.
The maximum attainable CVH score was set at 100 and subjects were profiled for advice on lifestyle modifications based on their scores relative to it, he informed.
“A score less than 40 was categorized as concerning, children in this needed intense lifestyle modifications starting as early as possible. A score between 70 to 100 was healthy whereas children scoring between 40-70 need moderate lifestyle movements,”
The 24% of the study population had a CVH score of less than 40, 68% featured in the 40-70 score category, and lifestyle of just 8% met all criteria needed for a healthy cardiovascular system, he maintained.
Dr. Kapoor urged parents to intervene & facilitate lifestyle modifications in their children that can potentially avert cardiovascular disease risk in adulthood, and shared ideas on what can be done.
Children’s lifestyle has a definable role in their risk of developing cardiovascular disease in adulthood, he opined.
He further said that little or no physical activity followed by poor dietary habits were found to be the topmost factors negatively affecting the CVH scores in the study population.
“Obesity was seen to be prevalent in 38% of the total study population, inadequate sleep was in 3% but improper bedtime hours were noted in the routine of 75% of children. The body has a 24-hour internal clock, called circadian rhythm, that helps regulate physical and mental functioning. Early or late bedtimes may be more likely to disrupt the body clock with adverse consequences for cardiovascular health,”
Most people don’t think about risk factors during childhood but I think it’s actually essential that we all start doing that. Because it’s probably way easier to prevent the development of cardiac risk factors than to try and get rid of them once they’ve developed. So the question is what can be done, he questioned.
“It starts with healthy eating, a good one is a diet where half the food is vegetables and fruits, a quarter is lean protein, and a quarter is a whole grain, with a side of dairy.
“Another very important step is to keep the children moving. Whether it’s through a formal class or just playing at a park, physical activity should be worked into a family’s schedule. But the activity should be age-appropriate and align with the child’s interests.” Dr Kapoor said.
Meanwhile the study is lined up for presentation in the Innovations in Interventional Cardiology Summit 2022 which is a two days Annual Meet of IIC 2022 starting from August 27.