Children at risk

Statistics compiled by The Childhood Obesity Foundation show that:

  • Childhood overweight and obesity has been rising steadily in Canada in recent decades 
  • Between 1978/79 and 2004, the combined prevalence of overweight and obesity among those aged two to 17 years increased from 15 per cent to 26 per cent (1)
  • Increases were highest among youth, aged 12 to 17 years, with overweight and obesity more than doubling for this age group, from 14 per cent to 29 per cent (1)
  • Most adolescents do not outgrow this problem and in fact, many continue to gain excess weight (2)
  • If current trends continue, by 2040, up to 70% of adults aged 40 years will be either overweight or obese (3)


Our role is understanding the risks this poses to children’s hearts and how we can ensure a healthy future for all. 

The Clinical Research Group performs non-invasive techniques on children and young adults at high risk. 

Their aim is to detect heart and blood vessel problems at a stage when they are potentially reversible and then design interventions to try to treat any abnormalities found.

According to Clinical Research Group Leader David Celermajer, early detection and prevention of advanced heart disease could save hundreds of thousands of lives each year.

1.    Public Health Agency of Canada. Curbing Childhood Obesity; A Federal, Provincial and Territorial Framework for Action to Promote Healthy Weights, 2012
2.    Singh AS, Mulder C, Twisk JWR. (2008) Tracking of childhood overweight into adulthood: a systematic review of the literature. Obesity Reviews 9. 474 – 488
3.    Le Petit C, Berthelot JM. Obesity: A Growing Issue. Statistics Canada catalogue no 82-618-MWE2005003