- Show more
World Epidemic of Child Obesity
Child obesity has become an epidemic worldwide, due to supercharging, lack of exercise and sedentary life, causing a greater risk of death and development of various diseases, especially coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, accidentbrain, etc. At present this disease has become one of the main causes of death. In obese children eating is a way to reduce anxiety, stress, this way of eating over time, will cause an increase in body mass, becoming a vicious circle that will reduce anxiety through food. Family dysfunction can lead to obesity, so the family is considered an essential pillar within the feeding of a child. The treatment of obesity must be multidisciplinary.
Child obesity today is one of the most serious health problems of the 21st century. This problem exists worldwide and is constantly affecting many low and medium -sized countries. The World Health Organization (WHO | Child Overweight and Obesity, S. F.) I point out in the 2016 report, that the prevalence of childhood obesity is increased at an impressive pace. It is estimated that, approximately more than 41 million children under five years of age, around the world suffered problems of overweight or obesity.
Obesity is a disease that consists in the accumulation of fat in the tissues. Fat can make more than 20% of body weight according to the energy balance, the age, height and sex of the person.
Childhood obesity is considered of multifactorial origin whose ethiopathogenesis are involved genetic, metabolic, psychosocial and environmental factors. Among the genetic factors is the predisposition, which is manifested through the organism’s metabolic response. Some of the environmental factors are bad eating habits and sedentary lifestyle, among others. Some clinical observations have shown that this disease begins mainly in childhood, causing an increase in causes of morbidity and mortality in adulthood, a fact that demonstrates the importance of its prevention from childhood.
Child obesity has great effects on adulthood, since between 77 and 92 % of obese children and adolescents remain obese in adulthood.
At present, children suffer from diseases that were more common in adults, such as diabetes, arterial hypertension, coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, among others.
Materials and methods
For this review article, the information was obtained from the search in articles found on the Internet through search engines such as the ELSEVIER Editorial, Medline through its specific search engine Pubmed, Google Academic and Scielo, collecting publications of scientific articlespublished in magazines with arbitration to evaluate the factors of childhood obesity. Some of the programs studied aimed not only prevention, but also the treatment of overweight and obesity.
Etiology and risk factors
Obesity is a complex combination of factors that act in many stages during a person’s life and it is important to know that those children who present them constitute a vulnerable group in which it is essential to start early applying prevention strategies.
- Genetic factors: Classically it is established that if both parents are obese the risk to offspring will be 69 to 80 %;When only one is obese it will be 41 to 50 % and if none of the 2 is obese the risk for offspring will be only 9 %.
- Environmental factors: It is formed by transport systems, automobile dependence and other vehicles, urbanization, which minimizes the need to walk.
- Food factors: urban populations from various countries have modified their food plan by increasing the consumption of fats, sugars and decreasing fiber consumption. The high prices of fruits, fresh vegetables and other foods of high nutritional quality, make them inaccessible for lower income groups. For its part, the food industry favors this behavior by segmenting the supply and marketing massive products of greater content in fat, sugars and low nutritional quality (essential nutrients deficient)). In addition, these foods are characterized by their high power of satiety, pleasant and low cost.
- Physical activity: It is associated with a feeling of well -being, increases self – esteem and having a beneficial effect on the control of other cardiovascular risk factors, such as diabetes and arterial hypertension. WHO recommends a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity of moderate intensity at least 5 days of the week for all ages, while for the maintenance of a healthy weight and the prevention of obesity is recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day,especially in sedentary people.
- Sociocultural factors: There are two quite different visions related to obesity. In developing societies, overweight is seen as a sign of social prestige and wealth. In developed societies obesity is an assumed stigma that places a negative correlation between weight and satisfaction. In this way, the opinion about overweight varies with the socioeconomic level and has, therefore, a great influence on the socioeconomic-obesity level relationship.
- Inadequate diet: Most children with overweight and obesity follow a hypercalical diet, in which there is an excess of foods rich in fats and sugars: precooked foods and fast food, shortage of fruits and vegetables, fatty foods (excessive use ofoil when cooking, excess meat, etc.), etc. In general, parents do not properly plan food and do not take into account the nutritional value and energy balance of what their child eats.
- Clinical implications and complications: It has been related to obesity in children and adolescents with an increase in all causes of morbidity and mortality in adulthood due to the demand for children with cases of type 2 diabetes (the so -called adult diabetes), hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol) and arterial hypertension, which predisposes them from childhood to suffer serious cardiovascular diseases. In addition, these children have a greater risk of developing morbid obesity when they reach adulthood.
Likewise, excess weight has an impact on bones and the locomotor apparatus, reducing tolerance to physical exercise and causing respiratory problems. But it is also very important to keep in mind that overweight can negatively affect the emotional development of children and adolescents. Feelings of inferiority and low self – esteem may appear. They can also feel rejected and tend to isolation, developing depressive behaviors and antisocial attitudes. And all this can lead to greater sedentary lifestyle and to increase calorie intake as a result of anxiety, thus aggravating the degree of obesity. On the other hand, it should be remembered that eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia can be initiated in overweight situations.
Treatment and prevention of childhood obesity
The treatment of obesity is difficult, so preventive aspects are priority. The best treatment of childhood obesity must begin acting in the first years of life, establishing healthy lifestyle habits: a balanced diet and promotion of physical activity. It is important that parents have the necessary information about the nutritional value of food and its energy value, how to build a balanced diet that includes all types of food.
If this is not done, the next step is the early detection of childhood obesity and the adoption of dietary measures, although taking care not to interfere with the development and growth of the child. It is best to consult with an endocrinologist for him to define what needs to be done. In any case, the family must be directly involved in the changes in life habits that will allow weight loss, making meals together and doing sports activities with the child. It is very important.
Obesity is the result of biological, genetic and environmental factors, lifestyle (especially the lack of physical activity), the increase in sedentary lifestyle and imbalance between energy needs and diet causes a high mortality rate in people. It is important to recognize the excessive increase in weight associated with linear growth in the early stages of pediatric control and carry out a family education that guides the development of healthy habits, such as physical exercise and eating behavior. In the diet, priority should be given to a moderate diet and healthy options with funny presentations for children, instead of restricting the diet. Foster regular, family, school, community physical exercise. The best direction is to combine diet and physical exercise for prevention, because once the unhealthy habits and weight gain is established, it is difficult to reverse it, because its treatment is complicated and not effective.
- Álvarez, m. (s. F.). Children’s obesity in Spain: to what extent is a public health problem or on the reliability of the surveys. 9.
- Causes and risks of obesity in children: Medlineplus medical encyclopedia. (s. F.). Retrieved October 3, 2020, from https: // medlineplus.GOV/SPANISH/Ency/Patientinstruccions/000383.htm
- Moreno Esteban, B., & Hernandez Alonso, and. (2000). Child Obesity. Endocrinology and nutrition, 47 (2), 55-59.
- Obesity in children: Medlineplus Medical Encyclopedia. (s. F.). Retrieved October 3, 2020, from https: // medlineplus.GOV/SPANISH/ENCY/ARTICLE/007508.htm
- Child Obesity. (s. F.-a). Retrieved October 3, 2020, from https: // www.UNICEF.Org/Ecuador/Obesity-Infantile
- Child Obesity: Causes and Treatment. (s. F.-b). Sanitas. Retrieved October 3, 2020, from // www.Sanitas.es/sanitas/insurance/es/individuals/library-of-salud/diet-food/food-infant/obesity-infantil-causas.HTML
- WHO |Data and figures on childhood obesity. (s. F.). QUIEN;World Health Organization. Retrieved October 3, 2020, from http: // www.quien.INT/END-CHILDHOOD-OBESITY/FACTS/ES/
- WHO |Children’s Overweight and Obesity. (s. F.). QUIEN;World Health Organization. Retrieved October 3, 2020, from http: // www.quien.int/dietphysicalactivity/childhood/es/
- Sanchez, a. M. L., Piat, g. L., OTT, r. A., & Abreo, D. G. Yo. (2010). Child Obesity, the fight against an obesogenic environment. 6.
- Vicente Sánchez, B., Garcia, k., González Hermida, A., & Saura Naranjo, C. AND. (2017). Overweight and obesity in children aged 5 to 12. Finlay Magazine, 7 (1), 47-53.