Childhood Obesity In The United States

1118 words - 5 pages

Childhood Obesity in the United States
Arnold Cavazos
Carol Bagley

Childhood Obesity in the United States
There is a major problem in this country and it is severely affecting our children’s health and wellbeing. This problem is childhood obesity. There is a great chance that this generation of our children will live shorter lives than their parents. Childhood obesity is not a problem we can afford to ignore. Over the last thirty years the rate of childhood obesity in the United States has tripled and continues to soar at a dangerously rapid rate. Today nearly 17 percent of all children are overweight or obese. The numbers in African American and Hispanic ...view middle of the document...

Insulin resistance, impaired glucose tolerance and type 2 diabetes, breathing problems such as asthma, sleep apnea, fatty liver disease (with excess fat deposits, the liver may develop complications like, cirrhosis, liver failure and even liver cancer.), gallstones, and gastro-esophageal reflux are other health issues that can develop due to childhood obesity. The rate in childhood obesity has continued to increase at a steady pace and the effects in our children’s health has dropped tremendously, both physically and psychologically.
Obese children run a greater risk in the development of social as well as psychological problems. Social problems of obese children such as discrimination often lead to issues of low self-esteem which can often continue into adulthood. Actions in social situations might be hindered when a child constantly feels isolated and helpless. The cycle then continues, as poor social skills often lead to bullying. Poor functioning at school and in social groups can be caused by continual low self-esteem and hopelessness and that often leads to depression. Children might withdraw from the activities they once enjoyed, experience additional weight gain, stop wanting to spend time with family or friends and act out in social situations.
There are several reasons that cause childhood obesity such as, children eating more than they need Children’s bodies store the extra calories in fat cell when then eat more to use as energy later, however if they do not get enough exercise and those fat cell do not get used the risk of becoming obese increases. Parents often tell their children they have to eat everything they have on their plate, this forces them eat everything that is served to them and ignore their fullness. Sometimes parents use food to reward good behavior. These habits lead to eating even if they are hungry or not. Many children have a very hard time breaking these habits even into adulthood. Another reason for the increases in childhood obesity is caused by the advertising of foods that are not nutritious. Advertising directed at children is very exploitative as children do not understand the persuasive intent of advertising, and cannot distinguish between programming and advertising. Although children cannot distinguish between programming and advertising...

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