Background: The relationship between fasting plasma insulin and blood pressure was studied in a cross-sectional survey of children and young adults aged 5 to 26 years.
Methods: Fasting plasma insulin, glucose, blood pressure, and anthropometric measurements were obtained on 3518 individuals.
Results: When divided into four age groups, the analyses showed that fasting insulin was significantly and positively correlated to both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in individuals at all age groups, except at 13 to 17 years. In multivariate regression analyses, fasting insulin remained independently associated with blood pressure levels after controlling for glucose levels, body mass index (weight/height) and skinfold thickness in children (aged 5 to 12 years) and young adults (aged 18 to 26 years), although not in adolescents (aged 13 to 17 years). Moreover, fasting insulin was more strongly related to systolic than to diastolic blood pressure. The fasting blood glucose level did not contribute independently to multivariate prediction of blood pressure in young adults. When the children and young adults were divided into tertiles according to fasting insulin and body mass index, the independent effect of insulin and body mass index on systolic pressure was also seen in children and young adults.
Conclusions: The association between plasma insulin and blood pressure noted even in healthy children and young adults help target areas for cardiovascular risk prevention.