Dietary Fibers and Nutraceuticals for Primary Cardiovascular Prevention in Children and Adolescents: A Critical Review


The roles of dietary fibers and nutraceuticals for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease from childhood are reviewed. Nutrition as an epigenetic modifier and the roles of endothelium, risk factors, epidemiological evidence and Mediterranean diet are critically analysed. Overfeeding in childhood can lead to the development of obesity and/or atherosclerosis in adult life. In particular, a high intake of nutrients affects the in utero programming with the adverse consequences of insulin resistance an endothelial dysfunction that lead to early atherosclerosis. Dietary fibers have important health benefits in childhood and research suggests that they may prevent obesity and lower blood cholesterol levels with a favourable impact on the risk of future cardiovascular disease incidence. However, it is for further studies to assess whether also in Southern European Countries, practicing Mediterranean diet as a normal habit, dietary fibers may contribute to modify the relatively low proportion of hyperlipemia observed in our population.

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F. Martino, P. Puddu, G. Pannarale and F. Barillà, "Dietary Fibers and Nutraceuticals for Primary Cardiovascular Prevention in Children and Adolescents: A Critical Review," Food and Nutrition Sciences, Vol. 4 No. 7A, 2013, pp. 39-47. doi: 10.4236/fns.2013.47A006.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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