Articles - Health of our Children

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Articles - Health of our Children

Postby Canuck Singh » Thu Oct 30, 2008 7:19 pm

Obesity in Our Children: How Can We Prevent an Epidemic?

Recent research also shows that there is a crystal-clear link between being overweight and developing diabetes, gallstones, hypertension, heart disease, stroke and colon cancer.[3]

An extensive study of more than 8,000 children in the US provides some alarming facts:

• 61% of American children are overweight, up from 17% in the early 1940s.[2]
• Nearly 25% of American children are obese.[5]

Long-term consequences of childhood obesity.

77% of overweight children do grow up to become fat adults.
Sudden increase in heart attacks and the rise in type-1 diabetes among young people may be associated with the parallel dramatic increase in obesity.[12] A lot of researchers also suggest this may also explain the decreasing age for puberty in girls.[13]

 Biological effect of childhood obesity on adult weight.

Fat cells change in number or mass depending on a person's age:
• Fat-cell growth in adolescence poses a greater risk for being obese in adulthood than in toddlerhood. Fat cells multiply during two growth periods: early childhood and adolescence. Overeating during those times increases the number of fat cells.[13] • It increases the number of fat cell the child will carry throughout life.[14]
• After adolescence, fat cells tend to increase in mass rather than quantity, so adults who overeat and gain weight tend to have larger fat cells, not more of them.

Losing weight in adulthood reduces the size of the fat cells but not their number, so weight loss becomes much more difficult for adults due to an increased number of fat cells created during childhood.

 Risk factors for obesity in children.

 Diet and Exercise

You’ve got to protect and teach them yourself.[15]

• Sugar is a significant problem. (The link between high fat diets in children is less clear.)[17] Soda, other sweetened beverages and fruit juice can be singled out as major contributors to childhood obesity. American scientists reported that drinking sugar-laden soda regularly increases a child's risk for obesity by 60%. And the average American adolescent consumes 15 to 20 extra teaspoons of sugar a day just though soda and sugary drinks. (Juice, while better than soda, is still filled with sugar.)[17]

• A lack of physical exercise is playing a significant role in obesity in children. Research has shown that the annual distance walked by children has fallen by nearly 30% since only 1972, partially because more parents are driving their children to school out of fear of abduction, molestation and traffic accidents.[18]

• Excessive television watching plays a critical role in obesity in children, particularly in girls. Studies that have compared television viewing time in American and European children show that obesity rates are lowest in children who watch television one hour or less a day and highest in those who watch for four or more hours a day.[19]

• Studies also report that contact time (being able to see and talk to your children) is important. However, quality, rather than quantity, of time spent with your kids appears to be the most important factor. Staring at the TV with your kids every night is not as good as taking them on a weekend camping trip once a month. Mental stimulation seems to be the key.[20]

Obesity in Parents

• When a parent of a child under three is obese, the child, even if thin, has a 40% chance of becoming obese later on.[6]
• Parental obesity more than doubles the risk that a young child, whether thin or overweight, will become obese as an adult.[7]
• In older children and teenagers, obesity in their parents starts to count less as a predictor for body weight than their own weight.

How can we correct this problem?

• Nearly all children snack, this is not unhealthy. In fact, if the snacks are healthy, let kids eat as often as they want. Most children follow natural instincts regarding food intake; they eat small amounts and frequent meals. Do not make the child “finish all their plate” and consume all their food in two or three large meals.[19]

• The food you place in your kitchen is important. If you fill your cupboards with high-sugar snacks, commercial packaged snacks, soda and sugar sweetened beverages and other fast foods, your children will eat them. If you fill your kitchen with a variety of fresh foods and foods that are low in added sugar and fat, after a while you’re children will eat it, and become used to it.[20]

• Never criticize children for being overweight. Such attitudes could put children at risk for eating disorders, which are equal or even greater dangers to health.[15]

• For young children, try the traffic-light diet. Food is designated with stoplight colors depending on their high caloric content: Green for go (low calories); yellow for "eat with caution" (medium calories); red for "stop" (high calories).[21]

• Small subtle changes in habits, like limiting television, video games and computer use to a few hours a week can contribute significantly to weight control, regardless of diet and physical activity.[23]

• Don’t force a child to exercise. Physical activity can be “hidden” in the form of games and sports. This way, physical exertion is associated with fun and enjoyment.[22] Let the child chose the activity, no matter what kind. As long as they are moving, it’s working, and it will encourage further interest.[24]

• Your children mimic what you do. This may not be apparent immediately. However, a ton of behavioral science research suggests that most children sooner or later gravitate to the behavior patterns of their parents.[20] If you sit around drinking beer and watching TV all weekend, they eventually will too. If they see you consistently eating healthy foods and exercising, they too will most likely gravitate towards that lifestyle.

1. Obesity prevention: the case for action. Kumanyika S., Jeffery R.W., Morabia A., Ritenbaugh C., Antipatis V.J., Correspondence: IOTF Secretariat* International Journal of Obesity, March 2002, Vol. 26, No. 3 pp.425-436.
2. How to tackle the problem early? The role of education in the prevention of obesity. Dietz W., Correspondence: Professor William Dietz. International Journal of Obesity, May 1999, Vol. 23, No. s4 pp.s7-s9.
3. Overweight and obesity in the United States: prevalence and trends. Flegal K.M., Carroll M.D., Kuczmarski R.J., Johnson C.L. International Journal of Obesity, January 1998, Vol. 22, No. 1 pp.39-47
4. Differential associations of body mass index and adiposity with all-cause mortality among men in the first and second National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES I and NHANES II) follow-up studies. Allison D.B., Zhu S.K., Plankey M., Faith M.S., Heo M., Correspondence: D B Allison*International Journal of Obesity, March 2002, Vol. 26, No. 3 pp.410-416.
5. Childhood obesity. International Journal of Obesity, May 1999, Vol. 23, No. s5 pp.s44-s45
6. Epidemic obesity: are genetic factors involved via increased rates of assortative mating? Hebebrand J., Wulftange H., Goerg T., Ziegler A., Hinney A., Barth N., Mayer H., Remschmidt H., Correspondence: J Hebebrand International Journal of Obesity, March 2000, Vol. 24, No. 3 pp.345-353
7. Prevalence of overweight in a triethnic pediatric population of San Antonio, Texas. Park M.K., Menard S.W., Schoolfield J., Correspondence: M K Park. International Journal of Obesity, March 2001, Vol. 25, No. 3 pp.409-416
8. A 12-year follow-up study of treated obese children in Japan Togashi K., Masuda H., Rankinen T., Tanaka S., Bouchard C., Kamiya H., Correspondence: K Togashi International Journal of Obesity, June 2002, Vol. 26, No. 6 pp.770-777
9. Time trends of obesity in pre-school children in China from 1989 to 1997 Luo J., Hu F.B., Correspondence: F B Hu International Journal of Obesity, April 2002, Vol. 26, No. 4 pp.553-558
10. Social class differences in overweight of prepubertal children in northwest Germany. Langnäse K., Mast M., Müller M.J., Correspondence: M J Müller International Journal of Obesity, April 2002, Vol. 26, No. 4 pp.566-572.
11. Change in body mass index in Australian primary school children, 1985–1997 Lazarus R., Wake M., Hesketh K., Waters E., Correspondence: M Wake International Journal of Obesity, June 2000, Vol. 24, No. 6 pp.679-684.
12. Determinants of haemostatic risk factors for coronary heart disease in obese children and adolescents. Gallistl S., Sudi K.M., Borkenstein M., Troebinger M., Weinhandl G., Muntean W., Correspondence: S Gallistl International Journal of Obesity, November 2000, Vol. 24, No. 11 pp.1459-464.
13. Risks and consequences of childhood and adolescent obesity Must A., Strauss R.S., Correspondence: Dr Aviva Must. International Journal of Obesity, March 1999, Vol. 23, No. s2 pp.s2-s11
14. Parameters of childhood obesity and their relationship to cardiovascular risk factors in healthy prepubescent children. Geiß H.C., Parhofer K.G., Schwandt P., Correspondence: K G Parhofer. International Journal of Obesity, June 2001, Vol. 25, No. 6 pp.830-837
15. Role of behaviour modification in the treatment of childhood obesity with the parents as the exclusive agents of change. Golan M., Fainaru M., Weizman A., Correspondence: Moria Golan International Journal of Obesity, December 1998, Vol. 22, No. 12 pp.1217-1224
16. How to tackle the problem early? The role of education in the prevention of obesity. Dietz W., Correspondence: Professor William Dietz International Journal of Obesity, May 1999, Vol. 23, No. s4 pp.s7-s9.
17. Relationship between juvenile obesity, dietary energy and fat intake and physical activity. Gillis L.J., Kennedy L.C., Gillis A.M., Bar-Or O., Correspondence: L J Gillis* International Journal of Obesity, April 2002, Vol. 26, No. 4 pp.458-463
18. Physical activity and determinants of physical activity in obese and non-obese children. Trost S.G., Kerr L.M., Ward D.S., Pate R.R., Correspondence: S G Trost. International Journal of Obesity, June 2001, Vol. 25, No. 6 pp.822-829
19. Distribution of food intake as a risk factor for childhood obesity Maffeis C., Provera S., Filippi L., Sidoti G., Schena S., Pinelli L., Tatò L., Correspondence: C Maffeis International Journal of Obesity, January 2000, Vol. 24, No. 1 pp.75-80
20. Parental eating attitudes and the development of obesity in children. The Framingham Children's Study. Hood M.Y., Moore L.L., Sundarajan-Ramamurti A., Singer M., Cupples L.A., Ellison R.C., Correspondence: M Y Hood. International Journal of Obesity, October 2000, Vol. 24, No. 10 pp.1319-1325.
21. Early macronutrient intake and overweight at five years of age Scaglioni S., Agostoni C., De Notaris R., Radaelli G., Radice N., Valenti M., Giovannini M., Riva E., Correspondence: S Scaglioni. International Journal of Obesity, June 2000, Vol. 24, No. 6 pp.777-781
22. The effects of a children's summer camp programme on weight loss, with a 10 month follow-up. Gately P.J., Cooke C.B., Butterly R.J., Mackreth P., Carroll S., Correspondence: P J Gately. International Journal of Obesity, November 2000, Vol. 24, No. 11 pp.1445-1452
23. Debate: Physical activity and the prevention of childhood obesity–Europe versus the United States. van Mil E.G.A.H., Goris A.H.C., Westerterp K.R., Correspondence: Edgar GAH van Mil. International Journal of Obesity, April 1999, Vol. 23, No. s3 pp.s41-s44
24. Role of physical activity in the prevention of obesity in children Goran M.I., Reynolds K.D., Lindquist C.H., Correspondence: Dr Michael I Goran. International Journal of Obesity, April 1999, Vol. 23, No. s3 pp.s18-s33
- Thanks do Dr. Cribb for the information above
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Canuck Singh
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Re: Articles - Health of our Children

Postby Alex11 » Mon Mar 28, 2011 10:01 am

Great suggestions dear i really like it actually this forum consist of all basic knowledge regarding children health so it is useful and i like it good job.
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Joined: Sat Mar 26, 2011 10:35 am

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