OBESITY IN CHILDREN AND TEENS
Obesity is considered the most common dietary crisis faced by a lot of Americans today. Both infants and children are not exempted from this grave health threat. This condition often happens when they are taking more calories than their small bodies can use. Like adults, this puts them in a very high risk of other health complications. Prevention and early detection is highly advised, since parents are mainly responsible for their child’s health. So what are the symptoms of child obesity?
The method for maintaining weight or losing weight is about the same for children as adults with the exception that children do need more nutrients in their daily diet. Consequently, the goal should be to feed your child a healthy diet and find ways to increase activity. If weight loss is needed, it should be slow at the rate of 1 pound a week to 1 pound a month, depending on the child's situation. Healthy eating and exercise habits should be thought of as a pair, one cannot go without the other, for your child's best of health.
The Emotional and Psychological Effects:
Other risks of obesity include the emotional and psychological effects on children. Children feel shame about being overweight or obese that can negatively impact their school work and their social standing. For example, many times a child has to deal with social discrimination which often times develops a low self esteem and self-blame.
Kids who are unhappy with their weight may be more likely than average-weight kids to develop unhealthy eating habits and they may be more prone to depression, as well as substance abuse.
Causes of Childhood obesity
Genetics and DNA have been found to be a contributing factor in the causes of childhood obesity. Unfortunately, some children are naturally predisposed to obesity. These children are born with genes that cause them to put on weight more quickly than other children. The children with certain genes end up storing the fat more easily than other children. There is not much that these children can do about their genes, but there are steps that they can take to conquer the obesity.
Lack of Exercise or Physical Activity: more and more children these days are not getting enough exercise or physical activity. With the popularity of computers and home based video gaming systems children have less and less reason or motivation to run around outside. Video games have become so realistic and lifelike that children simply become enthralled in them. It becomes difficult to convince them that running around and playing outside can be just as fun as defeating the latest video game sensation.
In the pass, children like to play sports more often, enjoy outside activities as forms of entertainment and walk to school. But now a day, children are completely opposite from the pass. The sports our children like to do these days include watching television, playing computer game, surfing internet, chatting, and any game they choose while exercising only their mind, head and hands only. When you combine the poor choices in food and the lack of exercising, there is a high chance that childhood obesity will end up lead to disease.
For more information see Facts for Families:
#02: Teenagers with Eating Disorders
#04: The Depressed Child
#54: Children and Watching TV
#61: Children and Sports
#66: Helping Teenagers with Stress
See also: Your Child (1998 Harper Collins)/Your Adolescent (1999 Harper Collins) and Good Grief (1996 Jessica Kingsley).
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