-- Question: As a teenager, can I eat whatever I want and not worry about heart disease?
Answer: As a teenager you'd think that'd be the case, and we wish it were the case at any age, but unfortunately it's not. It's not for two reasons. First of all, the changes of coronary artery disease in your arteries in your body begin at a very early age -- in fact, in our teenage years. And so the poor diet choices we make, the lack of exercise during our teenage years can come back and affect us later in life.
Further, the habits we set at a young age can be very important to the types of diet and exercise we follow as we get older. So for instance, as a parent, helping our children understand a low cholesterol, low fat diet and exercising regularly can pay off doubly, both in terms of preventing coronary artery disease, but also reducing the risk of future diabetes and hypertension.