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Obesity Is A Growing Epidemic In Children And Teens

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Lots of scientists, researchers and professionals have been watching this growing trend for decades. Children, pre-teens and teens have been steadily gaining more weight, and the health implications are enormous. A plethora of research and study has been performed in the last twenty-plus years. One thing is certain, obesity during younger years is a serious risk factor for very serious diseases in later years. The important thing for parents to understand is there is more to the story. Kids who are clinically obese and grossly overweight will experience these health effects a long time before they grow to be adults.

Yes, we mentioned Type II diabetes because it is right up there as a real possibility for obese children, teens and adults. It makes real sense that this condition would develop. What makes this different from Type I diabetes is that it is, sometimes, preventable. Primary risk factors for this kind of diabetes are weight issues like obesity and a prolonged sedentariness. What happens with those who are obese is the extra demand placed on the body to produce more insulin. This is because there is more body there that needs to receive it. Over time the body becomes more and more resistant to the insulin it produces and that is when Type II diabetes happens. Worldwide medical research has confirmed that obstructive sleep apnea is more common in obese children. This particular condition is especially dangerous because it causes the childs
airway to become blocked while he or she is sleeping. Kids who are overweight and obese are more likely to snore too but, according to researchers, that is actually deceiving. The reason for that is the snoring is sometimes a hidden symptom of OSA, obstructive sleep apnea. It is possible that having an adenotonsillectomy will help children and teens who are obese deal with this problem.

Science is still trying to puzzle out whether or not early onset obesity has a direct relationship with early onset puberty. Obviously, though, there is also some common sense in looking at what we already know. For example, we already know that obese kids and teens see puberty set in earlier and grow faster than other kids. It is still a situation, however, in which causality needs to be more definitely defined. While this is obviously not that serious a threat as the other obesity related problems, there are definitely serious implications that accompany abnormally young ages for the onset of puberty.

Obviously once obese children have reached this point, they are already at intense physical and social disadvantages. We all know how hard it is to lose weight and that you have to be very determined and have lots of support to do it. It is important for parents and friends to offer as much support as they can. Children and young adults alike can be very resilient and can bounce back from problems once healthy directions are taken. But of course the clincher is whether or not the children already suffer from any major medical conditions.

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  • Posted On May 5, 2012
  • Published articles 10

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