Childhood Obesity: A Growing Epidemic
Obesity continues to become an increasing cause for death worldwide, none as true as in the United States. Obesity is a “lifestyle risk resulting from an imbalance between energy intake and expenditure”. Internationally, at least 10% of school age children are considered obese. In the United States, this number is near 32%. Childhood obesity is so important to tackle at an early age, because studies have shown that it leads to long term health risk such as diabetes, heart disease, and cardiovascular disease. Children are also affected by the social and psychological factors that come with them being overweight at a young age. Although some genetic predispositions have been linked to childhood obesity, the socio economic situations that children grow up in (poverty, urban areas) are by far the leading causes to childhood obesity. In particular, black girls and Hispanic boys have the highest percentage chance of becoming obese as children. Childhood is an important period to deal with obesity, and this paper aims to tackle the issues associated with childhood obesity. We will look to evaluate measures to decrease childhood obesity, as well as ongoing developments aimed to tackle this problem.
Exercise has increased in our country over the last two decades tremendously. Leisure exercises such as walking, biking and swimming has helped increase the overall health of our country. Even video games such as “Dance, Dance, Revolution” and Wii Fitness are now helping kids to burn calories while they stare at a screen.
However, as technology has evolved our children now live more comfortable lifestyles, opting to rather play a video game (most do not involve exercise) rather then go play outside. Cross Sectional studies in the United States have shown that that “children who spend less time in moderate to vigorous physical activity were more likely to be obese than their active counterparts”. Adversely, the children who live in...