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Ann Med. 1991 Feb;23(1):67-72.

Serum insulin and other cardiovascular risk indicators in children, adolescents and young adults.

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Rehabilitation Research Centre of the Social Insurance Institution, Turku, Finland.


We wanted to determine the levels of fasting serum insulin during growth, the tracking of serum insulin, and the correlation of serum insulin with other coronary heart disease risk indicators in children and young adults. In 1986 2433 subjects, aged nine to 24 were studied, and insulin data were available from the same population in 1980 and 1983. Serum insulin levels showed a peak during puberty in both sexes and the decline in insulin continued after the age of 21. Tracking of serum insulin was only moderate, especially in females and young boys. Serum insulin correlated positively with body mass index, concentrations of serum triglycerides, and blood pressure, and inversely with the concentration of high density lipoprotein cholesterol. High triglycerides, high systolic blood pressure, and low level of high density lipoprotein cholesterol clustered among subjects within the highest insulin quartile. Our results suggest that the insulin resistance phenomenon, caused mainly by obesity and leading to unfavourable levels of other coronary heart disease risk indicators, is already developing in children and young adults. This suggests that preventing obesity in early life is important.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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