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Posted at 2:21 PM ET, 01/21/2010

1 of 5 teens has abnormal cholesterol

By Washington Post editors

The Post's Rob Stein reports on a new federal report that shows that one out of every five U.S. teenagers has abnormal cholesterol levels, that could boost their risk of heart disease.

The national survey of blood cholesterol levels in American teenagers found that more than 20 percent of those ages 12 to 19 had at least one abnormal blood fat level and the rate jumped to 43 percent among those adolescents who are obese.

Although previous studies had indicated the abnormal cholesterol levels -- once a condition thought isolated to people who were middle-aged and elderly -- had become a problem among the young, the new data documents the problem on a national level.

Read more on the health implications for teenagers when they experience health problems generally associated with adults .

By Washington Post editors  | January 21, 2010; 2:21 PM ET
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