Stories about: heart disease

Six Ways to Give Your Child a Healthy Heart for Life

February is heart month—a great time to think about heart health. While we tend to think of heart disease as a problem of adults, it can start in childhood—and the health habits of childhood have everything to do with heart health in adulthood.

So as we finish up February, here are six things that parents can do to give their children the best chance of a healthy heart for life:

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Second hand smoke has deadly consequences

Claire McCarthyIf your adolescent child has been exposed to secondhand smoke, he may already have heart disease. That’s the message of a new study published this month.

Researchers in Finland followed around 500 children from age 8 to 13. Every year they did a blood test that measured their exposure to tobacco smoke in the previous few days. At age 13, they looked at the arteries of the children using ultrasound, to measure their thickness and health, and measured their levels of Apolipoprotein B, which gives a direct measure of the lipoproteins that can cause heart disease.

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Health headlines: Binge drinking, Wii workout games and CPR

young girl playing WiiOther stories we’ve been reading:

Read one father’s story on how he became an advocate for safer teen driving. Check out these safe driving tips for your teen. [Read about the dangers of drowsy driving.]

Advertising guilt doesn’t curb binge drinking. Teen alcohol and marijuana use is on the rise. [A recent teen drug survey predicted this.] Young people who smoke marijuana for long periods of time are more likely to risk psychosis.

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Health headlines: Fitness supplements, ecstasy use and tongue-powered wheelchairs

Other stories we’ve been reading:

Multi Vitamin MadnessMore high school athletes are using fitness supplements with knowledge of their harmful effects. Parents don’t have to be fit in order for their kids to be fit – supporting your kids’ physical activity is what motivates them to be physically fit.

Scheduling recess before lunch is helping students and teacher alike. Menus with calorie listings have parents picking healthier options for their kids but not necessarily for themselves.

Parents who feel burned out at work are more likely to have kids who feel burned out at school. If parents use complementary or alternative therapies, their children are more likely to use them too. [Read our blog post on insurance coverage for alternative therapies.] Did you know that your child is more likely to have a mental disorder if you –as a parent – are bipolar?

cigarettesHigh cholesterol is putting 20 percent of teens at risk for heart disease. Healthy kids are more likely to die from ecstasy use than regular drug users. If your child smokes cigarettes, it’s much more likely that pot is next.

Toilet seat dermatitis is on the rise. Vaccinating babies against rotavirus could save two million lives a year. [Read our blog post on this year’s updated immunization schedule.] Female teachers might pass on math anxiety to girl students.

Teen pregnancies and abortions are on the rise. Parents shouldn’t be concerned if their children hear voices. There’s a new wheelchair that powered by the user’s tongue.

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