THE DANGER OF CHILDHOOD OBESITY
I believe it is truly amazing how the subject of obesity can fly so low off of the radar, especially in children. For those of us that have children, the facts this article will provide can be alarming. But in return, it will educate you on the importance of the subject at matter. Do you know what the number one most preventable disease is across the entire world? If you guessed childhood obesity, you are correct. Childhood obesity is the leading cause of preventable diseases worldwide. This disease can be prevented in most of all cases. Those who are related to the disease through genetics are not so lucky.
Over the last thirty years, childhood obesity has been on the rise.
THE DANGERS OF OBESITY
In most cases of childhood obesity, high calorie intake and lack of physical exercise are to blame. A small percentage of childhood obesity cases are blamed on genetic makeup, medical reasons, and physiatric reasons. Since obesity in children often lead to adulthood, children who are obese are usually tested for diabetes, hyperlipidemia, fatty liver, and physiatric illness.
In a new test that was done by the Government National Child measurement Programme of the United Kingdom, studies continue to show an increase in childhood obesity. The study shows the number of children obese has increased by twenty-five percent. The numbers speak for themselves. Twenty-five percent of children are obese before they begin school. By the time they are eleven, nearly one out of every three children is obese and will be at risk for life long complications such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.
Even though the increases were small, there is still cause for panic because childhood obesity continues to rise. It has been thought for many years that exercise and diet are the two main causes. We all need to try and keep our children healthy and teach them healthy habits along the way. Heart disease and diabetes are no joking matter. And to beat it all, it is mostly preventable. With the increase of exercise programs world wide within the last few years, the word is beginning to spread around. These programs are great. They offer children daily exercise, healthy eating tips, and educate the children about the importance of the two.
WHAT WE CAN DO
It is never to early to educate your children on the importance of obesity. With all the new technology within reach of our children, they are less likely to be as active as we were at their age. We need to educate our children about healthy eating and healthy exercise. When we are but a few months old, we begin to crawl and eventually walk. Around the age of one or so, we begin to say words. When we are three, we begin to combine words and make small sentences. At five, we learn to read and learn to write. By seven, we are capable to read small books and write fairly well. If our children can do all of this by the age of six or seven, they can learn the importance of eating right and daily exercise. As parents, we must teach them the right way to live, especially if they are showing signs of being obese. Our children learn from us. They watch us and take in our habits and what we say. We must give our children every advantage that we can as parents. We must educate them to the best of our knowledge. We must warn them of the risk that obesity brings to them. We can't stand idle by anymore. Childhood obesity has risen for the last thirty odd years and it shows no sign of slowing down. If we want it to, as parents, we have to take control of the situation and change it ourselves.
I believe firmly that our children need to be taught this in school. I am not saying we need to educate them on obesity year round, but we need to set aside time for this subject. Even though schools do teach this to a certain extent, it is not enough. As parents, I believe we should bring this up to our local school boards for discussion. Not everyone has an overweight child or obese child. But for the ones that do, your child is in danger. The good news is it can be prevented. It is up to you to take a stand and save your child from a life of pain and disease. I am not trying to scare you in any way. I just want you to be aware of all the things obesity can cause to your child. Even if the schools will do nothing, as parents, we can make the necessary changes for our children to prevent this disease.
THE CONSTANT RISE OF CHILDHOOD OBESITY
2-5 years of age
6-11 Years of age
Source: Essex Chronical, Chelsford (UK) April 28, 2011
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