JOHNSON COUNTY, Kan. - Jack Davis is a 10-year-old Johnson County boy who loves sports, especially soccer and basketball. He's also smart in school. His biggest challenge in life is his health.
Jack has high cholesterol; and high cholesterol can lead to heart disease if you're not careful. So Jack and his family are doing what they can to make sure his young heart stays healthy.
Ann Davis is Jack's mom. She said doctors discovered Jack's cholesterol was high during routine blood work.
"I was alarmed because I have high cholesterol; my sister has high cholesterol, and I was afraid Jack has the familial trait for high cholesterol," said Ann Davis.
As it turns out, doctors are not sure whether Jack's high cholesterol is inherited or the result of his diet.
"We're happy we've been able to control his high cholesterol with diet and exercise, so doctors are not sure if the cause is genetic," Ann Davis explained.
Research has proven that heart disease starts during childhood; but many people are not aware they have a problem until they're adults.
Ann Davis wants other parents to know that it's important to know their children's cholesterol levels so they can take action early, if needed, to make sure their children have healthy hearts later in life.
Jack said he doesn't mind exercising because he likes soccer and basketball. But he does have to watch what he eats, which is more difficult.
"I have to make sure I don't have too many potato chips," Jack explained.
For more information on heart disease, high cholesterol and children visit the American Heart Association at http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Affiliate/2013-Kansas-City-Heart-Stroke-Ball_UCM_443171_Event.jsp