The Cuases Of Childhood Obesity Essay

2860 words - 11 pages

Within the past three decades, the childhood obesity rate has increased three-hundred percent (Crouse par. 3). This also means that ten percent of children worldwide are overweight or obese (“Childhood Obesity” par. 33). According to the Centers for Disease Control being overweight is defined as, “having excess body weight for a particular height from fat, muscle, bone, water or a combination of these factors.” On the other hand, they define obesity as having excess body fat (“Child Obesity Facts” par.1). A child is determined as overweight or obese when total body weight is more than twenty-five percent in boys and thirty-two percent in girls (Green ??). Childhood obesity is not just something that influences someone’s life as an adolescent, it causes health risks including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, joint problems, diabetes, asthma, sleep apnea, liver disease, and gallstones (Torkos 42, Galea 62). A study of five to seventeen year olds showed that seventy percent of obese youth have a high risk of cardiovascular disease (“Child Obesity Facts” par. 2). These are diseases that we once associated with growing old, not growing up (Galea 62). Medical risks are not the only problems that childhood obesity can cause. Society has a strong bias against people or children who are overweight. People characterize them as ugly, lazy, and lacking willpower (Torkos 42). These stereotypes can cause an overweight child to have low self esteem which can lead to a much more serious problem, depression. The childhood obesity epidemic needs to be prevented, and the only way to do that is addressing the main causes. Childhood obesity has become a major problem in recent years due to lack of daily physical activity, inappropriate food advertising and the rise in unhealthy diets.
One of the biggest causes of childhood obesity would be the lack of physical activity that a child takes part in. Children are less willing to go outside and get the necessary activity and parents could be one of the biggest causes of this. In past decades children would be allowed to go outside the direct supervision of their parents and play with other neighborhood children. Except, protective parenting hurts a child’s opportunity to go out and play (Galea 60). A parent does not want their child going off somewhere, because there are a lot more threats of what people are willing to do nowadays. Not all the blame can be put on the parents though. Towns and neighborhoods have become a lot more populated in recent years, which means that areas are much more congested. Around the time where parents would let their children go play and explore there was also a lot of open fields or maybe even wooded areas that were accessible for neighborhood kids. Now these simple popular playtime spots are overrun by both commercial and residential life (Smith 31). This time of freedom and friends made being active and going outside fun, and that attitude is no longer in...

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