Poor Diet is Putting More Teens at Risk of Heart Disease

May 22, 2016 by Joel Fuhrman, MD

The standard American diet is damaging our children, placing them at a much higher risk of getting chronic diseases than previous generations. Data from a survey of thousands of U.S. teenagers has reported sobering news about the health of our nation’s young people.

The researchers found that 49% of overweight teenagers and 37% of normal-weight teenagers had one or more risk factors for cardiovascular disease, including diabetes, high LDL cholesterol, and hypertension. Twenty-three percent of teens are prediabetic or diabetic – a number that has more than doubled in the past ten years. Twenty-two percent of teens have high, or borderline high LDL cholesterol levels. Fourteen percent of teens have hypertension or prehypertension.1

Another recent study, which followed U.S. children for 24 years, found that childhood obesity was the greatest risk factor for premature death due to chronic disease.2

Children in our society become addicted to junk food at a young age and begin to show cardiovascular risk factors as teenagers. It takes a great deal of effort to derail these bad habits once they are established. Parents are the ones primarily responsible for what their children are eating. Our goal should be to instill healthy habits in our children early on, so that they grow up at a healthy weight, appreciate healthy food and exercise, and hold on to those habits as adults.

For a detailed plan to prevent and reverse heart disease, as well as meal plans and recipes, read my book, The End of Heart Disease.

A nutrient-dense, plant-rich diet style during childhood is the most powerful weapon against future cardiovascular disease, cancer, and autoimmune disorders. It also keeps the immune system working properly, increasing children’s resistance to common illnesses like asthma, ear infections, and allergies. For more information about how to raise healthy children, read my book, Disease Proof Your Child.

Even when parents provide healthful foods, children don't always eat well-balanced meals. Pixie Vites provide added insurance that children are getting the essential nutrients they need to grow up healthy, plus whole food extracts including blueberry, broccoli, kale, and pomegranate, supplying a spectrum of phytochemicals in their natural setting.

  1. May AL, Kuklina EV, Yoon PW. Prevalence of Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors Among US Adolescents, 1999-2008.Pediatrics 2012;129:1035.
  2. Franks PW, Hanson RL, Knowler WC, et al. Childhood obesity, other cardiovascular risk factors, and premature death. N Engl J Med 2010;362:485-493.

Joel Fuhrman, M.D. is a board-certified family physician, seven-time New York Times bestselling author and internationally recognized expert on nutrition and natural healing, who specializes in preventing and reversing disease through nutritional methods. Dr. Fuhrman coined the term “Nutritarian” to describe his longevity-promoting, nutrient dense, plant-rich eating style.
For over 30 years, Dr. Fuhrman has shown that it is possible to achieve sustainable weight loss and reverse heart disease, diabetes and many other illnesses using smart nutrition. In his medical practice, and through his books and PBS television specials, he continues to bring this life-saving message to hundreds of thousands of people around the world.