Childhood Obesity

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by RoxanneRenee
Last updated 5 years ago

Health & Fitness

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Childhood Obesity

Childhood Obesity

EpedimiologyOverweight is defined as excessive weight for height due to fat, bone structure, muscle, water or a combination of all. Obesity is simply defined as an excess of fat for your height. Overweight and obesity are measured by a child's BMI level and compared to their height, weight, sex and age. If a child falls within the 85th to 95th percentile they are considered overweight. If a child falls above the 95th percentile for their height and weight they are defined as obese..Current statistics:* In 2012,, more than one third of U.S. children were either overweight or obese.(1)* 1 in 5 preschoolers are overweight with half of those being obese. (10)* Children, ages 2-11 obesity is 18%, up from 7% in 1980.(1)* Adolescents, ages 12-19, obesity is 22%, up from 5% in 1980.(1)* Childhood obesity has doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years. (1)Being overweight or obese also varies between race:Obesity Rates* Hispanic youth = 22.4%* NH Black youth = 20.2%* NH White youth = 14.1%* NH Asian youth = 8.6%Overweight Rates:* Hispanic youth = 38.9%* NH Black = 32.5%* NH White = 28.5% (2)

Risk FactorsDiet - Regularly eating high-calorie foods such as fast food, baked goods, processed foods, soft drinks, and desserts.(5)Excercise - Lack of activity and leading a sedentary lifestyle can attribute to obesity. In children an increase in the number of hours watching T.V., and being idle while using a technolgy device.(5)Family/Geneltics - Having parents that are overweight or obese puts children at a greater risk. (5)Psychological - Some overeating can be caused by depression, boredom and stress.(5)Socioeconomic - Some people have limited resources and limited access to healthy foods. (5) Breastfeeding - There is a large body of research that suggests breastfeeding has positive impacts on reducing rates of childhood obesity. (6)

What Can Be DoneReducing weight seems like a simple calculaton, reduce intake and increase output. Unfortunelty it is not that easy and reducing the weight of our population is going to take a multifaceted approach. Policy makers, national, state and local organization, businesses, community leaders, schools, childcare facilities, healthcare professionals and individuals are going to have to tackle this epedemic together. Here are a few suggestoins:Nationally:* Addressing socioeconomic factors, such as poverty and education. This will have the greatest impact. (8)* Changing our food environment in a three-pronged strategy; altering food prices, shifting our exposure to unhealthy foods, and improving the image of healthy foods while making unhealthy foods less appealing. (8)* Adding a higher tax of unhealhty foods such as we did with cigarettes and alcohol. (8)* New USDA food guide called "My Plate" to help with getting healthy daily requirements. (9)Locally:* Create walkable communities with parks and recreational opportunities.* Create fitness/wellness programs at work* Collaborate with local organizations, businesses, schools and medical professionals to create best practices for your local community.Schools* Farms to school program which bring in locally grown fresh produce for students.* Create and enforce policy on Smart Snack standards as well as Healthy, Hungry Free Kids Act to ensure more nutritions foods served and sold at schools.* Create and enforce best practices in a health/wellness/physical fitness curriculum K-12 with mandatroy time built in so kids get physical activity everyday.Home:* Provide education to parents starting prenatally, to delivery, through preschool and public school on the risks of obesity and providing preventative measures.* Limit the time kids are inactive watching T.V. or on a computer, cell phone etc.* Limit processed and fast foods.

Resources:1. Elamin, Abdelaziz, MD, Phd, FRCP,FRCPCH, Professor of Child Health, Endocrinology and Clinical Nutrition Power Point Presentation.8. www.choosemyplate.gove10.

Health ProblemsChildhood obesity has both immediate and long-range effects on health.Immediate health effects:* Obese youth are more likely to have risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure. Cardiovascular problems can lead to; hypertension, dyslipidemia, chronic inflammation and increased Blood Clotting tendency. (1,3)* Obese adolescents are more likely to have pre-diabetes, a condition in which blood glucose levels indicate a high risk for development of diabetes.(1)* Children and adolescents who are obese are at greater risk for bone and joint problems, excercise intolerance, sleep apnea, and social and psychological problems such as stigmatization, porr self-esteem and depression. (1,3)Long-range health effects:* Children and adolescents who are obese are likey to be obese adults and therefore more at risk for adult health problems such as heart disease, stroke, cancers and osteoarthritis. (1)* Overweight and obesity are associated with increased risk for many types of cancer including: breast, colon, endometrium, esophagus, kidney, pancreas, gall bladder, tyroid, ovary, cervix and prostate, as well as myelomas and Hodgkin's lymphoma. (1)* Diabetes can lead to causes of heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, limb amputation and blindness. (3)* Muscular sketetal problems also arsie due to increased size. (1,3)* Psychological problems can persist into adulthhood causing an increase in depression, sense of loneliness and suicide. (3)Current trends if this epidemic is not controlled and reversed:* At current rates, this will be the first generation that will die at a younger age than their parents.* At the current rate the majority of our population will be overweight or obese by the year 2030. (7)* The medical cost of childhood obesity is 14.1 billion dollars and that number will steadily increase. (4)* The overall medical cost of obesity just in the state of California was 41 billion dollars, this too will steadily increase if there are no measures taken. (4)



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