Bad habits up teen headache risk

Tech and Science | Updated today at 09:51 AM


CHICAGO – OVERWEIGHT teens who smoke and exercise infrequently are three times more likely to get headaches and migraines than teens with healthier lifestyles, Norwegian researchers said on Wednesday.

More than half of the teens in a study who had all three negative lifestyle factors had frequent headaches compared with 25 per cent of normal-weight, non-smoking teens who exercised.

Teens with two of the negative factors were 1.8 times more likely to have frequent headaches than those who had none of them, Dr. John-Anker Zwart of the University of Oslo and colleagues reported in the journal Neurology.

The researchers did not determine whether the obesity, smoking and lack of exercise caused the headaches, or were connected in some other way.

‘These lifestyle factors have rarely been studied in teens,’ said Dr. Andrew Hershey of the University of Cincinnati, who wrote a commentary on the findings.

‘This study is a vital step toward a better understanding of lifestyle factors and potential preventive measures that can be taken,’ Hershey said in a statement