Metabolic Syndrome: Bridging the Gap from Childhood to Adulthood
Childhood and adolescence are particularly vulnerable periods of life to the effects of cardiometabolic risk and later development of atherosclerosis, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus. Developing countries with limited resources suffer most heavily from the consequences of cardiometabolic risk in children and its future implications to the global health burden. A better understanding of mechanisms leading to cardiometabolic risk in early life may lead to more effective prevention and intervention strategies to reduce metabolic stress in children and later disease. Longitudinal "tracking" studies of cardiometabolic risk in children provide a tremendous global resource to direct prevention strategies for cardiovascular disease. In this review, we will summarize the pathophysiology, existing definitions for cardiometabolic risk components in children. Screening and identifying children and adolescents of high cardiometabolic risk and encouraging them and their families through healthy lifestyle changes should be implemented to as a global public health strategy. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.