The Importance Of Preventing Childhood Obesity

The problem of obesity

Obesity is one of the number one problems in the modern world. It is not only an aesthetical problem, but it is above all a serious health problem which can lead to many illnesses, of which most are terminal. Chronic health conditions such as diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure are often connected with obesity.

Childhood obesity

Childhood obesity is a common problem in Western countries, and it is a problem which continues to rise. In addition to being in risk of developing chronic diseases as adults, obese children are also exposed to risk of becoming depressed and developing low self-esteem.

This can cause children a variety of emotional problems both in childhood, adolescence, but in the adulthood as well.

Childhood obesity risk factors

Many factors can influence children to become overweight and obese. There are genetic factors, meaning that other family members are also obese or prone to obesity. Then, there is irregular diet with high quantity of food or giving children food saturated with sugar and fat.

The lack of physical activity is another risk factor, which is especially present in the computer era. Naturally, all of these factors can also be combined and influence the obesity in children.

Childhood obesity prevention measures

Plenty of measures are being taken throughout the world to prevent and cure childhood obesity. Prevention should be performed on both society and family level, and the two should work together in order to be effective.

Prevention in society

Childhood obesity can be prevented on the public level in various ways. There are all sorts of governmental programs, prescribing meals in schools and nurseries, organized sports activities for children, setting up playgrounds and much more. The guidelines for healthy lifestyle can be taught in schools and promoted in the media as well.

Prevention in family

Family plays a very important role in every child’s life, which is why it is also important in preventing childhood obesity. The parents and the rest of the family should make sure to set the right example, set the rules and teach their children the rules of healthy lifestyle, in order to build healthy eating habits. They should also encourage children to be physically active by presenting them with many fun physical activities and by limiting the time they spend in front of the TV or in playing video games.

Reasons for childhood obesity prevention

Childhood obesity should be prevented, above all, in order to avoid the development of serious health conditions in adolescence and adulthood. It is also important because they physical appearance ca affect their self-esteem.

Physical health

Children’s physical health can be equally endangered by obesity like the health of the adults. Childhood obesity increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, which can occur at very early age. Also, obese children are more prone to developing high blood pressure and other heart problems in adolescence or adulthood. In addition, bones and joints are also heavily affected by childhood obesity, since at that age they are still developing.

Emotional health

Obesity hits self-esteem in children, especially in adolescent age. Obese children have higher chance of suffering from low self-esteem, which can lead into depression and other serious emotional conditions.