Children obesity in India
Obesity is a major health issues all over the world. Check out the scenario of childhood obesity in India along with its causes and other key information.
Presently, Childhood obesity is an extremely important issue in India. Because at present around 14 million children are in obesity criteria. And if this obesity rate continuously increases with the same speed, the day is not so far when India will become the first country in childhood obesity.
It is estimated that by 2025, India will stand second having over 25 million obese children among 184 countries where the number of obese children are concerned, according to a study.
Causes of obesity:-
Unhealthy eating habits
This is one of the main causes of obesity. Obesity never comes overnight; it develops due to poor diet. And wrong eating habits from the childhood also make people obese.
Globally, as people tend to eat out more often, the consumption of junk food is among major causes of obesity. During childhood, children who developed the habit of junk food will find it hard to develop good eating habits.
Lesser physical activity
Lack of physical activity aided by technology boom is making people physically inactive and leading to people becoming obese.
Lack of awareness
A large part of population still lacks basic knowledge about nutrition and balanced diet, which is a major cause of obesity.
Just as tall parents have tall children, it is more likely that overweight parents have overweight children. Up to 25% cases of childhood obesity are said to be contributed by hereditary factors. Rarely, some genetic conditions such as Prader-Willi syndrome are associated with childhood obesity.
The growing environment plays a huge role. Often parents remain ignorant about their children being overweight, as in their eyes they are perfect. This denial takes the form of parental praise of the child for being ‘healthy’ (which actually means overweight). These days Children are provided extra levels of comfort as everything is provided on a platter by doting parents. Children are more used to traveling by car or bike. Gone are the days when children used to go to school on foot. Exercise in the form of outdoor games is almost missing in the activity sheet of children due to various reasons. The number of gadgets that surround children these days is astonishing. They spend more time in mobile phones, TVs, computers or playing video games, rather than going for outdoor games that involve physical effort.
Health consequences of Childhood Obesity:
Childhood obesity has serious health implications. Obese children are at higher risk of hypertension, osteoarthritis, high cholesterol and triglycerides, Type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, respiratory problems, emotional disturbances, and some cancers. Two in three obese children will face obesity as adults and at risk for adult lifestyle diseases. India is projected to become the diabetes capital in the world.
What are the measures steps that can be taken:-
According to WHO, childhood obesity is one of the most serious public health issues of the 21st century. Prevention of childhood obesity is vital, especially since we know that treatment of obesity is extremely difficult. Proved and simple methods to stop obesity are:
- Increase fruit and vegetable consumption.
- Reduce the time of TV viewing. Eating while watching TV is a major cause of excess food intake. TV commercials lead children towards fast foods,
- Mitigate sugar intake. Sugar is now known as the new ‘tobacco’ and must be constrained at all ages. Water is recommended instead of sweetened drinks.
- Encourage physical activity. It is a struggle to ensure active lives in children, due to limited time and academic pressures