Obesity in Children

By Medically reviewed by Hello Doktor Medical Panel

The number of obese children is increasing nowadays. Obesity in children is a complicated health problem. It happens when a child’s weight is much above the normal or healthy weight for his or her age and height.

There is every likelihood that obese children will become obese adults, which can put them at stake of very serious conditions such as having diabetes and heart disease later in life, and make them more vulnerable to mental problems such as low self-esteem, sadness, stress.

Causes of Obesity in Children

There are a great number of reasons why children become obese. Obesity is most commonly caused by genetic factors, unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity. In rare cases, a hormonal problem can lead to overweight. If you want to find out the risk of a medical condition that results in obesity, like hormone problem, you should take some blood tests and physical exams.

Problems related to weight run in families but not every child with a family history of obesity will become overweight. If the parents or siblings are obese, then the children can encounter a higher risk of becoming overweight on their own. However, obesity can result from behaviors and habits that the family members usually do the same such as eating or drinking.

A child’s weight depends very much on his or her diet and level of taking physical activity. Nowadays, a lot of children do not involve in physical activities. The average number of children, for instance, spends more or less four hours every day keeping their eyes fixed upon television. That is not to mention the increased number of hours children spend on computers and video games which become more and more common.

Consequences of Obesity

Health risks

Obesity in childhood can affect the body in very negative ways. There are high chances that obese children will have:

  • High cholesterol and high blood pressure, which can potentially lead to heart disease
  • Breathing problems. For example, sleep apnea, asthma
  • Joint problems
  • Musculoskeletal discomfort
  • Bone problems
  • Risk of insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, impaired glucose tolerance
  • Skin conditions: acne, heat rash, fungal infections
  • Fatty liver

And some problems such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Low self-esteem
  • Social problems such as stigma and bullying

Heathy habits you should make:

  • Organize family activities with exercise. Show that you have fun doing physical activity, so they can imitate you and are likely to stay active.
  • Show that you will always be supportive.
  • Try to help yourself and your family members avoid sedentary lifestyles, such as playing video games or watching television.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

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