Although in some rare cases, medical conditions, such as an endocrine disorder like hypothyroidism, may cause a child to become overweight. The family doctor can carry out a careful physical examination and maybe some blood tests, if at all necessary maybe done in order to rule out this type of problem. Familial Factors A child with two obese parents is most likely to be obese (Dietz, 1983).
This may be due to genes but parental representation as to eating and physical activities can also affect development of obesity among children. It is also of worth to note that parents at least half of parents of children in elementary do not engage in exercise or any physical activity. (Ross & Pate, 1987). Low or Decreased Physical Activities It may be realized that children sit in front of the television and in front of the computer not less than three to five hours a day leaving less time for a more physical activity.
It was noted that children who watch television for prolonged periods are more likely to be obese not only due to low physical activity but the concurrent intake of high-calorie munchies associated with watching television (Dietz & Gortmaker, 1985). A child’s total diet and their activity level both play an important role in determining a child’s weight. The increasing popularity of television and computer and video games contributes to children’s inactive lifestyles.
The average American child watches 4 hours of television each day, time that could be spent doing physical activity Genes as was previously mentioned do play a factor in the development of obesity. Moreover, infants who have overweight or obese mothers are found to be less active and prone to gain more weight by three months in comparison to babies born to mothers who have normal weights, suggesting that there might be a possibility of an inborn desire to conserve energy (Roberts, Savage, Coward, Chew, & Lucas, 1988).
Although it might be noted that not all children who consume non healthy food and watch television for prolonged periods and generally have reduced physical activities develop obesity, so other predominant factors considered including genetics and recent researches show that there might be a correlation between obesity and genes. Genetic Factors may be realized as children whose parents or siblings are overweight is pegged at an increased risk of becoming overweight like the parents or siblings themselves.
Although it might be construed that weight concerns may run in families it is also of note that not all children with a family history of being obese will become obese or overweight as well. Genetic factors is considered to play a role in escalating the likelihood of a child being overweight or obese, shared family manners and norms such as eating and activity habits also influence body weight. Effects of Obesity One should note that obesity is not a joke and it has comprehensive impacts on a child’s health not only physically but mentally and socially as well.
Effects on Physical health Obesity has been associated to quite a number of diseases and conditions in adults, such as coronary heart disease, diabetes and certain types of cancer (Blocker & Freudenberg, 2001). Risk factors for these diseases are markedly increased in obese patients like high cholesterol and triglyceride levels, high blood pressure and such, this factors can also brought by the children into their adulthood, this points to long term health outcomes of the obese child into her/his adulthood.
It has been noted that the first stages of atherosclerosis are found in children as young as three years old (Blocker & Freudenberg, 2001). It is also of note that diabetes of the non-juvenile type are now prevalent in children and young adults, many experts believe that this is because of a higher percentage of overweight and obese children. Persistence into adulthood. A great concern for many is that obese children are more likely to be obese adults bringing with them the health, social and psychological consequences that are associated with being overweight and obese.
Note the three significant factors that affect prevalence of obese children to adulthood are age of onset, severity, and parental obesity. Research has found that the risk was higher in an older age of onset, like obesity in adolescence for obesity in adulthood, it was also found that the risk for adult obesity was larger in children who are extremely obese (Serdula, 1993). A double risk for adult obesity is found in children with obese parents (Whittaker, 1997).