Saturday, February 19, 2011

Childhood and Adult Obesity Trends


Our country has a problem. A problem that is not getting any better. Childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. Obesity among children aged 6 to 11 years increased from 6.5% in 1980 to 19.6% in 2008. Obesity among adolescents aged 12 to 19 years increased from 5.0% to 18.1%.

Obesity is the result of caloric imbalance (too few calories expended for the amount of calories consumed) and is mediated by genetic, behavioral, and environmental factors. Childhood obesity has both immediate and long-term health impacts:

*Obese youth are more likely to have risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure. In a population-based sample of 5- to 17-year-olds, 70% of obese youth had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease.  

*Children and adolescents who are obese are at greater risk for bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and social and psychological problems such as stigmatization and poor self-esteem.  

*Obese youth are more likely than youth of normal weight to become overweight or obese adults, and therefore more at risk for associated adult health problems, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, several types of cancer, and osteoarthritis.

Healthy lifestyle habits, including healthy eating and physical activity, can lower the risk of becoming obese and developing related diseases.

Below is an informative link about childhood obesity for parents from a website called Kids Health.

Also included is a disturbing video showing the obesity trends of adults in the United States. Watch as our nation gets more and more obese before your eyes.  For best viewing enlarge the video to full screen. 

video

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