Role of childhood food patterns on adult cardiovascular disease risk

Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2014 Oct;16(10):443. doi: 10.1007/s11883-014-0443-z.


Accumulating evidence indicates that childhood nutrition plays a role in the adulthood cardiovascular health. A lifelong tracking of dietary habits, following a long-term exposure to unhealthy dietary patterns or independent effects, is a potential effect-mediating mechanism. Dietary patterns have been studied by data-driven and hypothesis-based approaches. Typically, either data-driven healthy or prudent childhood dietary patterns have been characterized and found to be associated with lower adulthood cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk in the published cohort studies. With regard to the individual food groups or food quality indices, intakes particularly of vegetables and fruits (or fiber indicating plant food intake) and polyunsaturated fatty acids have shown protective effects. The evidence which could confirm the long-term healthiness of a hypothesis-based Mediterranean diet is limited, requiring further investigation. Overall, the recent literature strengthens the view that a healthy childhood diet is associated with lowered adulthood CVD risk.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Child
  • Diet, Mediterranean*
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Morbidity / trends
  • Prognosis
  • Risk Assessment*
  • Risk Factors