The little munchkin that you are holding in your arms today is at a greater risk of obesity than you were at that age. The world has changed, and there is less emphasis on leading a healthy lifestyle for many people. Because of the ease of fast food and because people would rather have the convenience and taste of processed food, the obesity levels are rising. This is happening with more than just children though. Adults are at risk as well, but if the children do not start changing, the future of humanity will look rather bleak.
Some Disturbing Facts on Childhood Obesity
Approximately 20 percent of the children in the United States are obese, and many millions more are overweight and creeping ever close to obesity. One out of every seven children who is in a low-income family is obese. These statistics do not seem as though they are going to be getting any better. In fact, as each year passes, the children of the world seem to be putting on more and more weight. This is going to cause some serious problems in the future.
Obese children are at a higher risk of getting heart disease and other serious diseases as they get older. Asthma and sleep apnea levels are higher in these children. Type 2 diabetes hits at a much younger age now. The medical problems are countless, and they will increase the medical costs for your child as he or she grows and well into adulthood. Of course, more than just the medical problems can affect the child.
The psychological factor is something that you can't ignore. Children who are obese often have lower self-esteem, and they have a higher change of developing anxiety and depression. The obese children tire easily, and that can affect their concentration in school.
What Causes the Problem?
The main factors are the diet and the lack of exercise. When parents provide their children with only unhealthy snacks, fast food and processed food, the child comes to crave these items. Instead of reaching for an apple when they are available, the child will go for the chips. The instilling of these unhealthy eating habits is detrimental, and is one primary reason that children are getting fatter.
The other reason is the lack of activity. Children today are content to spend their time inside and in front of the computer or television. They do not want to get out and experience the world and have fun running and playing. The sedentary life is one that breeds more obesity into the world. The "big boned" excuse of the past just isn't going to work. You need to make changes for the health of your child.
Help the Children!
You need to take charge and change the way that you eat in your household. Take all of the unhealthy foods out of the house and replace it with fresh, tasty and healthful alternatives. Get out there and exercise with the kids. Let the youngsters join teams and get outside where they can run around in the real world rather than their videogame worlds!