Background: There is limited prior research on the association of metabolic risk factors between youth and their caregivers within Latino families despite the high burden of obesity and the young age of onset of metabolic disorders.
Hypothesis: Obesity and metabolic risk factors are correlated between youth and their caregivers.
Methods: SOL Youth is a cross-sectional ancillary study of boys and girls ages 8 to 16 years old whose parents/caregivers participated in the HCHS/SOL. We studied 728 boys, 738 girls and 1,020 caregivers (86% women) who completed a clinical examination. Body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, fasting glucose, hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) and lipids (total-, HDL-, and LDL- cholesterol and triglycerides) were measured. Obesity was determined as >95th age- and gender- specific percentile of BMI in youth and BMI>30 kg/m2 in adults. We used weighted logistic regression to determine the odds of obesity in youth when caregivers were obese and we tested the association of each individual risk factor in caregivers with the same risk factor among youth using weighted linear regression. All models were adjusted for field center, youth age and ancestry and adult age, gender and education levels.
Results: On average, boys and girls were 12 years old and caregivers were 41 years old. When caregivers were obese (vs. normal weight), girls and boys were 1.5 (95% CI: 0.92, 2.43) and 3.9 (95% CI: 2.44, 6.29) times more likely to be obese, respectively. Among girls, measures of adiposity, HbA1c, SBP and lipids (except triglycerides) were each positively associated with those same measures among caregivers (Table). Among boys, all measures except glucose and HbA1c were positively associated with caregiver measures.
Conclusions: There were notable differences by gender in the odds of obesity among youth when a caregiver was also obese. Strong correlations between caregiver and youth metabolic risk factors underscore the need for family based interventions.