Homocysteine and cysteine levels in prepubertal children: association with waist circumference and lipid profile.Nutrition. 2013 Jan; 29(1):166-71.N
To evaluate homocysteine and total cysteine levels in prepubertal children and to determine the association between these levels and obesity, increased waist circumference, glucose levels, and lipid profile alterations.
Using a cross-sectional study, 677 prepubertal students 6 to 11 y old were assessed. The weight, height, and waist circumference of the students were measured. Laboratory analyses included triacylglycerols, total cholesterol and its fractions, glucose, vitamin B12, folate, homocysteine, and cysteine. Chi-square tests and logistic regression (forward-stepwise) were used for statistical analysis; the significance level was set at 5%.
The median age of the students was 8.9 y (6.5-11.5), and the prevalences of overweight and obesity were 90 in 677 (13.3%) and 81 in 677 (12.0%), respectively. An increase in waist circumference was observed in 180 of 677 children (26.6%). Inadequate levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triacylglycerols, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol were found in 95 (14.0%), 129 (19.1%), and 179 (26.4%) of the 677 students, respectively. The median homocysteine and total cysteine plasma levels were 5.6 μmol/L (0.1-11.7) and 365.7 μmol/L (191.5-589.2), respectively. A multivariate analysis showed that children with a waist circumference above the 90th percentile (7.3 μmol/L) were 2.4 times (95% confidence interval 1.4-4.0) more likely to have increased homocysteine levels and that children with increased waist circumferences and those with high low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels were 2.7 (95% confidence interval 1.6-4.6) and 2.1 (95% confidence interval 1.1-4.0) times more likely, respectively, to have total cysteine levels above the 90th percentile (445.0 μmol/L).
The association of abdominal obesity in prepuberty with levels of homocysteine and cysteine found in this study of a prepubertal population could be an early and independent predictor of cardiovascular risk.