November 12, 2009

Go outside to hear heart attacks

Drive through any neighborhood. Listen for the sounds of children playing. Can't hear anything. Then you are listening to future heart attacks.

"Now you can drive through entire neighborhoods where you know there are a lot of young kids there and hardly see any of them out," says Russell Pate, an American Heart Association spokesman.

Pate and other childhood obesity experts say more American youths are becoming obese because so many are addicted to television, video games, testing and fast food.

Obesity experts say the rise in childhood obesity isn't new.

The prevalence of overweight children and adolescents between ages 6 and 19 has tripled since 1970, a 2007 New England Journal of Medicine study found.

"Our study suggests that more of these young adults will have heart disease when they are 35-50 years old, resulting in more hospitalizations, medical procedures, need for chronic medications, missed work days and shortened life expectancy," said Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, lead author of the study. Read more on

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