Japanese kids gaining body fat, heart risks like Western counterparts

Japanese children are getting fatter – thus increasing their heart disease risk, researchers report today at the American Heart Association’s Second Annual Asia-Pacific Forum. Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta showed that an increase in body fat is linked to a rise in cholesterol levels – which is occurring in both U.S. and Japanese children. Historically, children in Japan have been leaner than their Western counterparts.

Fast food and 'the tube': a combo for heart disease risk

Eating fast food and watching TV add up to a high risk for obesity and diabetes, according to a study reported today at the American Heart Association’s 43rd Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention. “Fast food consumption in this country has increased dramatically,” says Mark Pereira, Ph.D., assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and Children’s Hospital in Boston. “The association between eating fast food and the incidence of obesity and abnormal glucose control has not been thoroughly examined before.”

Diabetic gene linked to heart disease

Heart disease is the most frequent, costly and severe complication of diabetes, affecting more than 70 percent of diabetic patients. There are geographic and ethnic differences in the risk of diabetic heart disease that cannot be fully explained by differences in conventional heart disease risk factors. Using a simple blood test, researchers at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology have identified a gene that determines which diabetes patients are at greater risk for developing heart disease. Unlike other recent breakthroughs, such as the test for C-reactive protein, the test for this gene needs to be administered only once in a patient’s lifetime.

Blood Proteins Put Dialysis Patients at Higher Risk of Heart Disease

A new study shows that two proteins are accurate predictors of heart attack or stroke in kidney dialysis patients. The research team found that high levels of C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation, and low levels of albumin, a sign of malnutrition, had strong ties to heart disease in these patients, who are many times more likely to develop heart problems than the general population. “Both inflammation and malnutrition play an important role in the high risk of cardiovascular disease among dialysis patients,” says Josef Coresh, M.D., Ph.D., lead author of the study and associate professor of epidemiology, medicine and biostatistics at Hopkins. “Testing for these proteins will allow us to sooner identify patients at high risk, and to manage heart disease risk factors more effectively.”

Rigorous, short-term diet-exercise program lowers heart disease risk

Obese men can significantly reduce heart disease risk on a three-week low-fat, high-fiber diet and daily exercise ? even though they may lose only a few pounds, according to research announced today in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association. Men who consumed a diet high in grains, vegetables and fruit and took brisk daily walks reduced their high blood pressure, a hallmark risk factor for congestive heart failure, kidney disease, coronary artery disease and stroke.