There has been a significant increase in the prevalence of obesity among children in recent years. Western children are the most affected.

This is due to a number of factors. Several hours per day spent in front of a computer, little physical activity, poor nutrition characterized by junk food, etc. All causes of obesity in children are related to the modern lifestyle practiced in Western countries.

In spite of the fact that the topic of the article relates to children, it is important to note that the phenomenon is also evident in high percentages among adults. People become overweight as a result of eating high-fat foods, watching too much television, and not exercising. Therefore, it is not surprising that children also adopt this lifestyle and suffer from obesity as a result.

Dr Baseem Namouz - Childhood Obesity

Not all cases of obesity in children are caused by the factors listed above. In some instances, obesity is an inherited genetic condition or it may be the result of a disease or an incorrect metabolism of the body. Physical activity performed regularly will change the situation regardless of the reason.

What is Childhood Obesity ?

Obesity is defined as an excess of fat tissue in the body as a function of age and gender. It is a very inclusive term. An assessment of a child's fatness is based on the ratio between height and weight, as well as other factors such as the child's age and gender.

Obesity can be assessed in two ways. The first method is based on the weight and height data and the second on the calculation of the body mass index. In both cases, it is possible to arrive at an accurate calculation and determine whether it is a normal overweight condition or severe obesity that is potentially harmful to the patient's health.

Childhood Obesity is unhealthy

Obese adults are known to be at risk in terms of their health. The prevalence of diabetes and hypertension is three times higher among obese individuals than among those who do not possess excess weight, according to medical studies. Obesity is associated with heart disease caused by high blood lipid levels and an increased risk of developing a malignant disease.

In children and teenagers, obesity that is not treated in time can result in them becoming obese adults. They will also be subject to all the associated health problems. Being overweight is not only an aesthetic issue, but it can also pose a danger in certain circumstances.

There are a number of medical problems that may develop in obese children, including:

  • Increased levels of lipids in the blood
  • Hypertension
  • Future risk of developing heart disease
  • Snoring
  • Diabetes
  • Precocious puberty
  • Orthopedic problems
  • Gallstone risk

In addition, fat children are a source of amusement. This results in a decrease in their self-confidence among their peers. As a result, they avoid participating in activities that require physical effort and are less likely to become socially awkward or unacceptable because of the shame associated with their external appearance. Growth can also be affected by it. This will manifest itself in a low level of achievement in all fields, including the workplace.

What is the treatment for obesity?

When it comes to obesity caused by an incorrect lifestyle and excessive eating, the goal of treatment is to change habits in order to lose weight and keep it off. Therefore, most treatments involve a combination of controlled food consumption and physical activity.

During treatment, the child will receive a nutrition program aimed at instilling proper eating habits. Every program is tailored to the patient's needs and includes training for parents as well. The recommendation for physical activity can also be included if there is a need, while reducing the amount of time spent watching television or sitting in front of a computer.

In general, these are the recommended courses of action. In children, stomach shortening surgery and drug treatment are not recommended. Almost all of the experts involved in the field agree that prevention is the most effective method of preventing the spread of the disease.