Study Finds Obesity as Teen as Deadly as Smoking

Posted on February 25, 2009  Comments (7)

A Swedish study has found obesity is as deadly (increasing adult mortality) as smoking for teens. Combined effects of overweight and smoking in late adolescence on subsequent mortality: nationwide cohort study

Regardless of smoking status, overweight and obesity in late adolescence increases the risk of adult mortality. Obesity and overweight were as hazardous as heavy and light smoking, respectively, but there was no interaction between BMI and smoking status. The global obesity epidemic and smoking among adolescents remain important targets for intensified public health initiatives.

Obesity Just as Risky for Teens as Heavy Smoking

Dr. Martin Neovius of the Karolinska Institute and colleagues analyzed data from more than 45,000 18-year-olds who underwent military conscription tests in which their body mass index (BMI) and smoking status were recorded. The men were followed for an average of 38 years.

During the follow-up period, 2,897 of the men died. The incidence of death was highest among obese men and lowest among those of normal weight. Compared with those who had a normal weight at age 18, those who had been overweight were about a third more likely to die early, whereas those who were obese were more than twice as likely to die prematurely.

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7 Responses to “Study Finds Obesity as Teen as Deadly as Smoking”

  1. GregR
    February 25th, 2009 @ 1:37 pm

    Actually I have seen teens that are both obsese and smoke, a deadly combination. We need more education in the schools about how these life choices can come back to hurt you later on.

  2. Harold Baldwin
    March 6th, 2009 @ 10:41 am

    I volunteer at the local school about once every month or two, and have simply been amazed at the number of not just obese, but 100% sedentary teens. When I was (an admittedly chubby) teen, I don’t think anyone was sedentary. Most of us walked just to get around, if nothing else!

  3. Anonymous
    March 13th, 2009 @ 4:47 pm

    According to the news, early as 12 years old children are already diagnose as Diabetes Mellitus Type 2. I think it should start at home were parents are the no.1 educator.

  4. Alex
    May 3rd, 2009 @ 11:57 am

    Most parents would warn their child about the dangers of even moderate smoking, but most probably wouldn’t associate being overweight with the same level of risk.

  5. Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog » Re-engineering the Food System for Better Health
    November 23rd, 2009 @ 2:00 pm

    We need to improve health in the USA. The current system is unhealthy and needs to be improved…

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    November 30th, 2009 @ 11:34 am

    We continue to spend huge amounts of money and yet fail to take sensible steps to improve outcomes…

  7. Healthy Diet, Healthy Living, Healthy Weight » Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog
    January 4th, 2012 @ 9:26 am

    […] this, it seems to me, makes the problem of increasing childhood and teen obesity even more important to deal with as soon as issues […]

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