This study was intended to clarify the relation between fasting insulin, lipids, and blood pressure in adolescents before the onset of hypertension and to examine the association of these data with similar data obtained in their parents. The participants in this study were 183 adolescents 14 to 18 years old (96 girls) completing a 4-year intervention trial and their parents (164 mothers, 122 fathers). Blood pressure was measured twice on the right arm in a seated position using a random-zero sphygmomanometer. Fasting blood samples were obtained for lipid and insulin analyses. Fasting insulin was significantly correlated with systolic blood pressure in the adolescents and also in the parents before and after adjustment for body mass index. Fasting insulin was correlated significantly with levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, and HDL and LDL cholesterol in the adolescents. It was correlated only with triglycerides and HDL-cholesterol in mothers and fathers. After adjustment for body mass index, the correlations between fasting insulin and lipids in the children were not significant. A significant relation was shown between children's systolic blood pressure and mothers' fasting insulin and systolic blood pressure. Significant correlations were found between the children's and fathers' triglycerides and HDL-cholesterol, whereas significant correlations were found for fasting insulin and all lipids between mothers and children, and these remained significant after adjustment for body mass index. These results show (1) a significant relation between fasting insulin and both lipids and systolic blood pressure in adolescents and (2) a significant relation for these factors between adolescents and their parents. Although weight appears to play an important role in this relation during adolescence, genetic and environmental factors other than those mediated via weight may control insulin metabolism within families. The data support a role for studies during early biological development to address these issues.
- Blood pressure