Harianjogja.com, JAKARTA – High cholesterol does not only affect adults but can also occur in children, including heart disease and stroke.
Cholesterol is a fatty substance that comes from a person’s liver, but is also found in certain food products. The child’s body will use cholesterol to produce cells, vitamins, and hormones.
Launching from medicalnewstoday, Friday (06/25/2021), according to the American Heart Association (AHA) at least 1 in 5 teenagers will suffer from high cholesterol. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) notes that children who have had cholesterol risk factors for two years should have their cholesterol levels tested.
The cause of high cholesterol in children has various factors such as diet or certain health conditions. The following factors cause high cholesterol levels:
1. Eating Patterns
If the food in children has high fat it can cause cholesterol levels. Foods that contain saturated fat and trans fat include: high-fat cheese, high-fat meats, whole-fat milk and cream, butter, ice cream, processed snacks (pastries, chips, potatoes, and fried foods).
The AHA recommends that children aged 2-3 years receive a total fat intake of 30-35% of their daily calories. Meanwhile, children aged 4-18 years receive 25-35 percent fat from their daily calories.
A child who has diabetes can lead to an increased risk of high cholesterol levels in the child. Diabetes can cause a condition called diabetic dyslipidemia. It can lower HDL levels and increase LDL levels.
Atherosclerosis is a condition where fatty deposits build up in a person’s arteries known as plaque. Plaque consists of cholesterol, fatty substances, calcium, and fibrin.
Atherosclerosis has no known exact cause. While it is unlikely to cause problems in children, it can cause health complications if it develops further during adulthood.
4. Familial Hypercholesterolemia (FH)
FH is a genetic condition that can cause high cholesterol. According to the FH Foundation, this disease can affect 1 in 250 people worldwide. FH can cause high levels of LDL cholesterol due to mutations in the gene responsible for removing cholesterol from the body.
The body cannot get rid of cholesterol properly, which can lead to atherosclerosis. This condition is genetic, individuals with FH have a 50% chance of passing it on to their children.