1 April 2018
Prevention of Childhood Obesity
Childhood obesity is not only an issue in the United States, it is an outbreak. The number of overweight and obese children in America has increased wat too much over the past years, and if there is no action taken it will just keep going downhill. A trend of fast food has flooded every state in the country, leaving every state in a poor nutrition state. Fast food corporations seem to be encouraging children to eat regular amounts of unhealthy foods by giving away toys with the meals. Televisions, computers, and video games, have started to take over, leaving exercise out. These influences can lead to childhood obesity, which comes with a lot of negative effects. Obesity puts children at a high risk of developing many illnesses. Not only do children who are obese have unhealthy weights, but they also have a high risk of having weak lungs, poor blood quality, and other illnesses. Even with things standing in the way, there are ways to slow down the outbreak of childhood obesity. Preventing child obesity can be reached by following a balanced diet and by participating in physical activity. There are a plenty of causes and negative effects of obesity in children, but thankfully there are also ways to prevent or even stop the spread.
Children are considered obese if they have a body mass index greater than or equal to the 95th percentile for their age (Elander 13). There are many causes for children being at or above this percent. The main causes of childhood obesity are poor nutrition and lack of exercise. When unhealthy foods are eaten along with small amounts of exercise, obesity is usually the outcome. Eating high calorie foods regularly like fast foods, baked goods and vending machine snacks increases weight (Ozkan 11). Technology such as televisions, computers, and video games can also contribute to childhood obesity.
In United States, the average child spends over three hours each day watching television (Bourgeois). This is time that could be spent playing in outdoor activities such as riding a bike, roller skating, or playing soccer. Emotional issues are another cause of childhood obesity. Obesity can result from low self-esteem, depression, or tragic life events. Tragic events in the lives of some children such as deaths in the family, the divorce of parents, or moving to another home can also lead to overeating. Some children overeat as a way of coping with problems in their lives or dealing with emotions like stress or boredom (Ozkan 12). Lack of financial resources can lead to childhood obesity as well. Children raised in low-income backgrounds have a greater risk of becoming obese (Ozkan 14). Poverty may inhibit some parents from being able to provide their children with exercise and a proper nutritional diet due to a lack of time or money.
Obese children not only suffer from unhealthy weights, but also face many other physical, mental, and emotional...