Health Obesity In Young Children Is Now Being Seen In The Very Young


by Donald Saunders - Date: 2007-03-19 - Word Count: 398 Share This!

It has been well known for some time now that obesity, which has reached epidemic proportions in the United States, is being increasingly seen amongst teenagers but it appears that this epidemic has now reached children who are barely old enough to walk.

Although it hardly seems possible, one recent study which examined nearly two thousand children found an alarmingly high number of overweight and obese children at just three years of age.

The study focused its attention on a group of children from low income families living in twenty large US cities who were born between 1998 and 2000 and recorded their height and weight at three years of age. Astonishingly, the researchers found that nearly one-third of white and black children were either overweight or obese and that this figure rose to forty-four percent in the case of Latino children.

The high numbers in general are very worrying, but just why such a high incidence of obesity was seen in Latino children is something of a mystery. Although the study showed that there was more of a tendency for Latino children whose mothers were overweight to be overweight themselves and also found that Latino children were more likely to be given a bottle when they were put to bed, this, while clearly contributing to the problem, seems unlikely to completely account for it.

The results of this study are extremely worrying as, apart from the stigma that is still attached to being overweight and the pressure that this will place on very young children, we are also beginning to see a number of medical problems such as asthma and even high blood pressure appearing at earlier and earlier ages. Indeed, young children are now beginning to present themselves with 'adult' problems such as high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.

Whatever the reason for the spread of obesity across the Western world as a society we must sit up and take notice of what is happening. It's bad enough that this problem should affect us as adults but when it starts to appear in children as young as three years of age it is time to act.

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Related Tags: obesity, obese, overweight, fat, weight, child obesity, morbid obesity, juvenile obesity, teenage obesity

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