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Health Effects of Childhood Obesity

Health Effects of Childhood Obesity
As I have discussed in my initial Obesity article, this condition is a worldwide epidemic that affects both adults and children. Did you know that nearly 15% of children worldwide are considered overweight? In fact, most obese adults started their overweight dilemma in childhood. In this article, I will discuss the negative health effects of childhood obesity.

Obesity accounts for more than 350,000 deaths a year. As a parent, how could you help your child to overcome this health problem? Being overweight alone can be damaging to your kid’s emotional well-being, which affects his/her social relationship to others. It may also degrade your child’s self-esteem, hence developing inferiority complex. How would you manage your child’s weight issues?

It is important that you control your child’s weight gain at a very early stage. You should be able to remind your child all the negative health effects of being obese to encourage him to have a healthy lifestyle. Maintaining a healthier patterns of eating and physical activities will promote fitness and avoid getting too much weight, especially in childhood years. If you don’t know if you child is obese or not, use our BMI calculator to learn the exact weight status of your child.

Causes of Childhood Obesity

Genetics is one cause of childhood obesity wherein a study shows that if one parent is obese, there is 50% chance that the child will also be obese. However, if both parents are just overweight (not totally obese), there is about 85% chance that the child will become obese. But experts are not looking at genetics to resolve the problem of obesity. Obviously there are other major factors that should be highly considered to effectively prevent obesity in children.

The other major causes are really not a secret to us and its obvious – imbalanced nutrition and lack of physical activities in children. Over eating and unhealthy diet in children contributes to the inability to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Plus, lack of social interaction that promotes physical activities, will greatly affect their body’s ability to burn excess fats and thus results to obesity.

Effects of Childhood Obesity

There are various health effects of being obese especially in children. Because of heavy weight, obese children gets easily fatigued, have trouble sleeping, breathing difficulties, flexibility and body posture issues, hypertensive tendencies, mood swings and many other conditions not including complications such as heart diseases and cancers.

But the biggest effects that are truly damaging are not in physical but rather in the child’s emotional side. Obese children are often discriminated by other children, causing them to have low self-esteem and as I have said earlier, leads to inferiority complex and other even have depressive tendencies. Your role as a parent, is crucial for your child’s health improvement.

What can you do?

Your emotional support to your child is very important. Let your child feel that he/she is special and don’t have any physical defects. You can show your support by initially get your child a thorough medical evaluation by a pediatrician. This is to identify if there are any underlying causes of obesity.

Next is to increase your child’s physical activities. You can help your child do any regular exercise such as sports, walking together, having a family time, doing some house chores and many others. Increasing your child’s physical activities will definitely help reduce and maintain your child’s weight status.

Emphasizing the positive effects of healthy eating is another factor that could help keep your child from obese status. Have more vegetables and fruits on your child’s diet coupled with healthy drinks such as milk and lots of water. Avoid unhealthy junk foods, processed and canned goods and other snacks that leads to mindless munching.

Also, as a parent, we should be the best role model to help them overcome obesity. Encouragement and acceptance will help improve their confidence and bravely face the life’s challenges that lies ahead. Have more time with your child to guide them effectively in terms of health and being sociable. Childhood obesity is not the real issue here, the real issue will be the consequences of your non-action with regards to your child’s weight problem. So give love and support, help your child overcome obesity!


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