Pay Attention Parents Childhood Obesity on the Rise

Advertisement

According to the 2007-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 17 percent of American children and adolescents aged 2 to 19 years are obese. Childhood obesity is associated with a variety of health conditions such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and Type 2 diabetes.

Among pre-school-age children aged 2 to 5 years, obesity increased from 5 between 1976 and 1980 to 10.4 percent between 2007 and 2008. Among 6 to 11 years olds, obesity increased from 6.5 to 19.6 percent and among adolescents aged 12 to 19, obesity increased from 5 to 18.1 percent during the same period.

For children aged 2 to 19, childhood obesity is defined as a BMI at or above the 95th percentile for children of the same age and sex, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Many experts believe that the rise in technological innovations, including video games and computers, contribute to childhood obesity. Parents should encourage their children to get involved in extracurricular activities. By getting children involved, it gives them less time to sit in front of the television and computer.

Advertisement

The study also found that children who are obese are much more likely to stay obese growing into adulthood. Obesity is one of the leading causes of a decrease in life expectancy, which demonstrates the impact of childhood obesity.

It is important to remember that children do not get fat all on their own, they have help from a variety of sources, including their parents, who sometimes turn a blind eye to the fact that their children are overweight and becoming unhealthy adults.

In a poll, 84% of parents rated their children as having an normal or healthy weight, while in fact that was not true in many of the cases. There were also cultural issues that were addressed in the report, such as Latino parents preferring to have children who were a little on the heavier side and African American parents more likely to underestimate the weight of their children, and more likely to have an overweight child.

Children also do not have a lot of money, and when they go out with friends they tend to eat unhealthy fast food, such as McDonald’s or Burger King. Parents need to be more aware of their child’s habits so that this trend does not continue become an ongoing concern.

In order to keep our children healthy, we will need to decrease these growing numbers. Parents should begin to take a hard look at their children’s weight and begin to get involved with healthy habits to prevent obesity, which is on the rise.

Advertisement