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Metabolic Imbalance Linked With Asthma in Children

Regardless of BMI, those with asthma more likely to have imbalanced metabolism

MONDAY, Sept. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Children with an imbalanced metabolism, which could be due to diet and/or exercise deficiencies, may be at an increased risk for developing asthma regardless of their body mass index (BMI), according to research published online Sept. 17 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

Lesley Cottrell, Ph.D., of the West Virginia University School of Medicine in Morgantown, and colleagues analyzed demographic data, BMI, fasting serum lipid profiles, and evidence of insulin resistance in 17,994 4- to 12-year-olds in mostly rural West Virginia to study the relationship between BMI and asthma and test the hypothesis that derangement in lipid and glucose metabolism is an independent risk factor for asthma.

After controlling for gender differences and exposure to smoke, the researchers found that children with asthma were more likely than their non-asthmatic peers to have higher triglyceride levels and acanthosis nigricans, a marker of insulin resistance development, regardless of BMI.

"This study provides the first set of community-based data linking asthma, body mass and metabolic variables in children. In particular, these findings uniquely describe a statistically significant association between asthma and abnormal lipid and glucose metabolism beyond BMI associations," the authors write.

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