Childhood obesity is increasingly a major health concern, more so now that there a plethora of fast food outlets and snacks in the market. This naturally calls for greater education on this problem that plagues many children across the globe. Essentially, obesity is caused by an excess of body weight. For growing children, such increase is acceptable so long as the weight in within the healthy body mass index.
Numerous factors account for obesity. These factors are often associated with nutrition, psychology, physiology and family. Many people believe that genetic factor plays an important role in childhood obesity, thus giving rise to the commonly held belief that obese children often have obese parents. While such belief is true to a certain extent, paying attention to the parents’ lifestyle is more paramount. Otherwise parents may succumb to the notion that since they are obese, it is therefore perfectly normal that their children are obese (though this is partly true).
One obesity risk is to consume high-calorie foods on a regular basis. These foods include food from fast food outlets, supermarkets and even vending machines. Although consuming this sort of food does not necessarily bring about obesity, such is often the case due to lack of physical exercise – the means to burn the extra calorie. Aside from this, people who cannot handle emotional stress well are also prone to obesity as they will then have tendency to crave food that is high in sugar.
Childhood obesity can bring with it many health risks which include high blood pressure, heart disease, type II diabetes, liver disease, stroke, sleep disorders and even some cancers. Psychologically, these children may have low self esteem as a result of their body image. Consequently, they limit their social circle and feel lonely.
The solution is of course to alter the children’s diet and encourage more physical activities. The diet should consist of vegetables and fruits. Fried foods should be eliminated and substituted with grilled or baked foods. Foods that are high in sugar and salt or that are processed should be avoided altogether. This change will be more effective if all family members practise together as this brings greater commitment.
About The Author
I write on health, particularly on aspects concerning childhood obesity.
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