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Childhood Obesity Problems, Causes & Solutions

Childhood Obesity Problems, Causes & Solutions. A Growing Crisis. “In the past three decades, the number of overweight children has more than doubled, with most of the increases occurring during the past ten years.” - Rallie McAllister, M.D. What’s the Big Deal?. I Don’t Want to Grow Up.

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Childhood Obesity Problems, Causes & Solutions

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  1. Childhood ObesityProblems, Causes & Solutions

  2. A Growing Crisis • “In the past three decades, the number of overweight children has more than doubled, with most of the increases occurring during the past ten years.” - Rallie McAllister, M.D.

  3. What’s the Big Deal?

  4. I Don’t Want to Grow Up • 25% of children who are obese at age 6 will be obese as an adult • 75% of children who are obese at age 12 will be obese as an adult

  5. Effects on the Child

  6. Type 2 Diabetes used to be virtually unrecognized in adolescence almost entirely attributable to obesity obese children are reported to be 12 times more likely to have high fasting blood insulin levels Orthopedic complications bone and cartilage in the process of development are not strong enough to bear excess weight Hypertension Elevated blood pressure levels have been found to occur about 9 times more frequently among obese children Physical Consequences

  7. Social Difficulties • Obese children… • are stereotyped as “unhealthy, academically unsuccessful & lazy” • may be teased or verbally abused by other children • can become excluded from being a part of social groups and/or other activities

  8. Psychological Problems • Discrimination can cause a negative self-image and poor self-esteem • Sadness can occur, which can lead to depression • Loneliness • Eating disorders • more prevalent in females

  9. People who are obese or overweight also have a lower life expectancy A 40-year-old nonsmoking male who is overweight will lose 3.1 years of life expectancy; one who is obese will lose 5.8 years. A 40-year-old overweight nonsmoking female will lose 3.3 years of life expectancy; one who is obese will lose 7.1 years.

  10. How to Tell If A Child is Overweight or Obese

  11. Indicators • Growth Chart • height and weight can be compared and plotted • Skin fold thickness • measured at the triceps with a caliper that pinches the skin and together and will be higher in obese children • BMI (Body Mass Index) • is best measurement to take because it is age and gender specific

  12. What is BMI? • BMI is used to identify overweight and obesity in children • BMI = weight (kg)/height (m)² • For children, BMI is age and gender specific and is consistent with adult index, so it can be used continuously from two years of age to adulthood

  13. Are you at risk? • The Center for Disease Control avoids using the word “obesity” for children • Instead they suggest two levels of overweight: 1.) 85th percentile: At-risk level (overweight) 2.) 95th percentile: Severe-level (obesity)

  14. What does the 95th percentile BMI score mean? • Correlates to BMI score of 30, which is the marker for obesity in adults • Identifies children that are likely to have obesity persist into adulthood • Is associated with elevated blood pressure and lipid in older adolescents which increases risk of diseases

  15. Increase in obesity among American youth over the past two decades:

  16. What are the Causes?

  17. The Family Atmosphere • According to the American Obesity Association, parents are the most important role models for children. • Obesity tends to run in families • Eating patterns play a role • Children of active parents are six times more likely to be physically active than kids whose parents are sedentary

  18. Television & Nutrition • Commercials feature many junk foods that promote weight gain • fast food, soft drinks, sweets and sugar-sweetened breakfast cereals • Children seem to passively consume excessive amounts of energy-dense foods while watching TV

  19. The typical American child spends about 44.5 hours per week using media outside of school.

  20. Pick-up or Delivery? • Today, families eat fewer meals together and fewer meals at home • Children tend to eat more food when meals are eaten at a restaurant • Many children eat fast food on a regular basis • Take-out food like pizza or chinese is also popular

  21. Between 1977 and 1996, portion sizes grew in the U.S., not only at fast-food outlets but also in homes and restaurants • One study of portion sizes for typical items showed that: • Salty snacks increased from 132 calories to 225 calories • Soft drinks increased from 144 calories to 193 calories • French fries increased from 188 calories to 256 calories • Hamburgers increased from 389 calories to 486 calories

  22. Vending Machines • Soda • each 12-oz (though now most are 20-oz) sugared soft drink consumed daily increases a child’s risk of obesity by 60% • risk of lack of calcium if students choose sweetened drinks with no nutritional value instead of milk, a good source of vitamins, minerals and protein

  23. In 1977-78, drank about four times as much milk as soda. In 2001-02, they drank about the same amounts of milk and soda

  24. Vending Machines • The Center for Science in the Public Interest took a survey of vending machines nationwide in middle and high schools (2004) • The results found that the majority of options were high in calories and/or low in nutrition • in middle school vending machines, 73% of the drinks and 83% of the snacks sold were of poor nutritional value • in high schools, 74% of beverages and 85% of snacks were nutritionally-poor choices • only 12% of available drinks were water

  25. A La Carte Selections • Resembles fast food • Hamburgers, French fries & pizza • Do not meet the USDA fat recommendations • A recent study published by the American Journal of Public Health suggests that about 35-40% of students reported only eating snack bar items for lunch over the two year study period

  26. Simple Solutions

  27. Keys to Preventing Obesity • Teaching healthy behaviors at a young age is important since change becomes more difficult with age • Education in physical activity and nutrition are the cornerstones of preventing childhood obesity • Schools and families are the two most critical links to decreasing the prevalence of childhood obesity

  28. Parent’s and Primary CaregiversRole in Prevention • Create an active environment • Limit amount of TV watching • Plan active family trips such as hiking or skiing • Enroll children in a structured activity that they enjoy

  29. Prevention (cont.) • Create a healthy eating environment • Implement the same healthy diet for entire family, not just selected individuals • Avoid using food as a reward or the lack of food as a punishment • Encourage kids to eat a variety of fresh produce (food bland in color often lack nutrients) • Don’t cut out treats all together, think in moderation, or kids will indulge

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