The influence of parental occupation on selected coronary heart disease risk factors was studied in a cohort of Finnish children aged 9, 12 and 15 years (n = 1211) as part of the Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study in 1986.
The relationships of parental occupation to serum lipid and apolipoprotein concentrations, blood pressure, obesity, smoking, physical activity, diet and birthweight were examined. The occupation of the parents was obtained by a questionnaire and classified as I: upper non-manual (22%), II: lower non-manual (26%), III: upper manual (32%), IV: lower manual (5%) and F: farmers (15%).
Highest serum total and how density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations were found in classes IV and F. Boys from class IV had 7.1% higher total cholesterol concentrations compared to class I (4.98 mmol/l versus 4.65 mmol/l, P = 0.0033), whereas farmers' girls had 10.4% higher concentrations than girls from class III (5.31 mmol/l versus 4.81 mmol/l, P = 0.0057). Blood pressure was related to parental occupation only in boys, and the values were highest in class F. Boys from class IV smoked most often, and they also had lowest values for physical activity index and highest obesity indices. Farmers' children consumed significantly more saturated fat and cholesterol than children from other classes. In boys, the percentage of subjects with a low birthweight (