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A sound and simple guide to cardio-vascular health, the resting heart rate of Britain’s children is on the rise. Over the past 30 years it has increased by one beat per minute in girls and two beats per minute for boys, both aged from 9 to 11 years old.
Researchers at the University College London describe the rise as modest, but worrying all the same; resting heart rate in the young can be an indicator of health problems in later life. High resting heart rates are commonly associated with coronary heart disease.
Part of the rise is believed to be linked to higher obesity rates among children in the same age groups, but the figures show that body weight and fat percentage alone could not be the only cause. More time spent doing sedentary activities, leading to an overall decline in fitness levels most likely also played a role, said the researchers.
Their findings were based on analysis from 5 studies covering 23,000 children in the same age group.