As per a report published in an International Journal named ‘Paediatric Obesity’ more than 17 million children will be obese, making India second country with highest number of overweight children among 184 countries. Child obesity is a serious health condition which means a child is considerably overweight as compared to his/her ideal weight according to their age.
WHO claims that childhood obesity has become one of the most challenging child health issues as the percentage of obese children has increased at an alarming rate globally. Obesity brings along a number of health problems for example diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attack, bones problems, high rates of cholesterol etc. In a significant number of child obesity cases, it has been observed that it doesn’t only affects a child physically but also at a mental and psychological level.
Dr. Promilla Butani says, it is really disturbing to see the increasing rate of child obesity because in some way or the other obesity affects children at various levels. There’s no rocket science to prevent obesity in children but merely keeping track of these following points can enable you to gift your children with a happy & healthy childhood.
Causes of Child Obesity and its Prevention
1. Unhealthy Food habits
One of the main reasons of child obesity is the consumption of high calorie foods. Every parent might like to call their babies healthy when they are chubby and overweight, ignoring the issue by assuming that as the child grows up he/she will start losing weight. As a parent, you have to understand that being healthy and being overweight are two different things. Children don’t really have the understanding of what is healthy and what is unhealthy to eat. Therefore, it’s your responsibility to develop healthy habits for your children. As a global shift, there is a rise in the consumption of junk foods, desserts, carbonated drinks, packed foods and they do more harm to yours and your children health. Pediatricians suggest if you eat healthy fruits and vegetables, your child will definitely follow your footsteps.
2. Lack of Physical Activities
At one hand technology is a boon and on the other it has become a bane. Most of the children prefer playing video games and other indoor activities instead of outdoor games which include more physical activity. It is a busy world. Parents are busy making their livelihoods and tend to ignore the importance of exercise for their children. Children who don’t exercise fail to burn excess calories and gain unhealthy weight. Dr. Butani says encouraging your child to do yoga and actively participate in sports at school can be really helpful in fighting or preventing obesity.
3. Hereditary Factors
If obesity is in your genes, there are higher chances that your child would gain unnecessary weight due to unhealthy lifestyle. In such case, it becomes crucial to develop healthy eating habits and exercise regularly.
4. Psychological Factors
In a significant number of cases, it has been observed that children tend to overeat under stress. Over eating is their way to cope up with such emotional problems. It can be because of depression or simply out of boredom. The chances are high that these tendencies are transferred from parents to their children. Seek a pediatrician’s or a psychologist’s advice to deal with mental or psychological problems.
It is advisable to cultivate healthy sleeping habits, cut down on sugar intake, plan family activities such as yoga or morning walks in order to ensure healthy lifestyle for your children. Is your child suffering from obesity? Have you already considered all these factors and yet unable to deal with their obesity? For personalized counselling and treatment reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave your queries in the comments below.