According to new research, which will be presented next week at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America, teenagers, obese, cause irreparable damage to the bones.
Excess weight in childhood and adolescence is associated with a number of health risks, including cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The new study focused on how obesity affects the bone structure.
"Recent studies have shown more frequent forearm fractures in obese young people", - said study lead author, Miriam A. Bredella, MD, a radiologist.
The scientists set out to - to determine the relationship between overweight in adolescents and bone structure. 23 teenagers were involved with obesity, average age - 17 years. "Adolescence - a time when bone loss is a major problem," - says Dr. Bredella.
The researchers conducted a CT scan type 3D HR-pQCT, designed specifically for the measurement of bone mineral density and bone microarchitecture in the hands and feet to determine the structure of the distal radius and the forearm. They also used dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) to determine a body composition, including muscle and visceral fat mass.
"There are several mechanisms by which visceral fat has a negative effect on the bone" - said Dr. Bredella. - It secretes substances that contribute to chronic inflammation, stimulates the formation of osteoclasts. In addition, vitamin D, important for bone health, soluble in fatty tissue and is "trapped" inside the fat cells. "She noted that the required growth hormone also reduced in adolescents with visceral obesity.
The results showed that body mass index is associated with cortical thickness and area, and visceral fat mass - with cortical porosity.
The data obtained indicate the presence of large amounts of visceral fat in combination with a small amount of muscle mass, that poses a danger to weakened bone structure.
"The best way to prevent bone loss - a healthy diet that contains adequate amounts of calcium and vitamin D, along with exercise, as we have shown in our study Muscle mass is essential for bone health,." - says Dr. Bredella.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity among adolescents has quadrupled over the past thirty years. It is estimated that more than one third of children and adolescents in the US are overweight or obese.