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Metabolic Syndrome and Its Associated Early-Life Factors among Chinese and Spanish Adolescents: A Pilot Study

Department of Maternal and Child Health Care, School of Public Health, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou 510080, China
Instituto de la Grasa (CSIC), Campus Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Edificio 46, 41013 Seville, Spain
Departamento de Enfermería, CTS-436 Adscrito al Centro de Investigación Mente, Cerebro y Comportamiento (CIMCYC), University of Granada, Av/Ilustración 60, 18016 Granada, Spain
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(7), 1568;
Received: 5 June 2019 / Revised: 8 July 2019 / Accepted: 10 July 2019 / Published: 11 July 2019
PDF [1044 KB, uploaded 12 July 2019]
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Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a growing problem worldwide in adolescents. This study compared two sample populations of young people in Spain and China, and analyzed the association of birth weight and breastfeeding duration with MetS. A cross-sectional study was conducted in adolescents (10–15 years old); 1150 Chinese and 976 Spanish adolescents. The variables analyzed were anthropometric characteristics, biochemical markers, and demographic characteristics using the same methodology and data collection protocol. Also, birth weight and breastfeeding were retrospectively analyzed during the first year of life. The results showed statistically significant differences between the two groups in reference to body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, triglyceride, glucose, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels. The MetS prevalence was higher in Spanish adolescents (2.5%) than in the Chinese group (0.5%). Breastfeeding duration was inversely associated with hypertriglyceridemia, low HDL-C, and MetS, whereas higher birth weight was associated with hyperglycemia, low HDL-C, hypertriglyceridemia, and abdominal obesity. Spanish adolescents showed more altered MetS components, and consequently, a higher MetS prevalence than the Chinese adolescents. This made them more vulnerable to cardiometabolic risk. Our results highlight the need for interventions designed by health professionals, which would encourage pregnant women to breastfeed their children. View Full-Text
Keywords: metabolic syndrome; adolescents; breastfeeding duration; birth weight metabolic syndrome; adolescents; breastfeeding duration; birth weight

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Wang, J.; Perona, J.S.; Schmidt-RioValle, J.; Chen, Y.; Jing, J.; González-Jiménez, E. Metabolic Syndrome and Its Associated Early-Life Factors among Chinese and Spanish Adolescents: A Pilot Study. Nutrients 2019, 11, 1568.

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