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Study finds link between CVD and childhood popularity


Key points from article :

Children who are unpopular with their classmates are more likely to suffer heart and blood vessel disease in later life.

Boys who suffered low status appeared to have a 34 per cent higher risk of circulatory disease in adulthood.

Girls had a 33 per cent higher risk.

Links "remained significant" after taking into factors that may influence the results.

Exact reasons for an increased risk of disease were unclear.

Mental disorders and alcohol misuse in adulthood were probably influenced by adversity during childhood.

Socially isolated children suffer from lack of social and emotional support.

Children who are bullied are known to develop conditions such as anxiety and depression.

Study included over 10,000 men and women over 60, whose peer group status was known at the age of 13.

Lucy Martin at the BHF: "this shouldn't fuel unnecessary anxiety about how your popularity in childhood impacts your long-term risk of heart and circulatory diseases."

Research by Stockholm University published in BMJ Open.

One-third increased risk is low compared to impact of other lifestyle choices

Mentioned in this article:

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British Heart Foundation (BHF)

Charity organization researching heart and circulatory diseases

Stockholm University

Public university in Sweden founded in 1878 and is one of the largest in Scandinavia


Publisher of more than 70 medical and allied science journals