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Obesity is a disorder that is characterized by being overweight, where the patients have an accumulation of fats on their bodies. It not only affect the way people look but also changes the health status since it contributes to medical complications such as; type II diabetes, heart ailments, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Obese children also face the risk of low self esteem, depression and negative body image. In America obesity remains a menace to handle since half of the American population is overweight (Levine & Hammond, 2010). It has been shown that one in every three children and teenagers in America is obese; this has become the number one health concern in the health sector and to parents.
This paper tackles Childhood Obesity and the health effects that it has on the children of today and the future health effects it might cause, and some of the Diseases and Illnesses associated with obesity. The percentage of children and adolescent who are defined as overweight has even more than doubled as compared to the situation in the 1970s. Ironically, among the medical conditions, obesity is among the easiest condition that can be noticed, but it has be found to be the most difficult to treat. Research has found that, are much more likely to become overweight adults unless treated by adopting and maintaining healthier patterns of eating along with exercise. It is true that, around 30b% of adults having obesity started during their childhood. On the other hand, more than 300,000 deaths per year are occurring is as a result of obesity.
Anything that affects the health of the population definitely has an impact on the economy and obesity is not in exclusion. It affects the productivity of people and also caused much to be spent on health that would be invested elsewhere. Obesity is quite costly to the US economy; it costs the US economy about 215 billion dollars yearly which is spent on direct and indirect impacts inclusive of lost productivity, medical expenses among others. Other studies indicated a massive $147 billion is spent annually by paying medical expenses relate to obesity and these expenses have continued to inflate and if the trends are not stopped they will increase more.
Apart from the medical costs that come from the direct expenditures, the other costs are incurred from lost productivity, premature deaths, absenteeism and disability. According to the recent studies, the costs also touched on transportation expenses as it was argued that due to heavy weights, fuel consumption was likely to be more.
It was argued that the total productivity costs are likely to be quite high; as high as 66 billion dollars. The researchers have argued that, though studies have been carried out on obesity, little attention has been paid to the effect that obesity has on the environment and transportation. The researchers argued that obese people will large vehicles meaning that there will be more consumption of fuel leading to direct increase in costs in form of high consumption of fuel. High consumption of fuel will mean that the greenhouse effect will have a high impact on the globe as large vehicle are known to emit a lot of the greenhouse gases (Sreeraman, 2010).
Obesity can be dependent on independent variables such as; age, sex, illness (dyslipidemia, diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases, osteoarthritis, stroke, sleep apnea, gallbladder diseases, respiratory problems and cancer), income, insecurities, food and medical spending from the government. And statistics indicate that with increasing in age the risk of being obese decreases but those who are already obese in childhood are likely to have obese related medical complication as adults. Obesity is likely to increase with increased income; income can be compared to the lifestyle of the individual in view of the fact that more income makes the person live a lavish life. The lavish life can contribute to poor feeding methods and no exercises thus increasing the chances of obesity.
Food is a significant factor since it affects directly the contribution of the fat in the body poor feeding habit will increase the chances of obesity. Obesity based on illness caused will be increased by the rates of obesity; figures indicate that for overweight children continually develop illnesses including kidney disease and diabtes. Study shows that 61% of obese children are at risk of a heart related ailment while 26% are faced by two or more risk factors (Facts about Obesity in the United States).
Diseases and Health Effects Childhood Obesity
While fat in most countries has gone down in the recent years owing to public response to the global overweight epidemics. As a matter of fact, obesity is still a growing concern in the world. Most people have now started removing fat from their diets, but don the other side, individuals have now increased their intake of sugars, high density carbohydrates as well as starches. Low proteins and fat meals in most cases leave people feeling hungry; hence fill their stomachs as soon as possible.
Theses diseases associated with diabetes include: type 2 diabetes; which happens when glucose level in blood is too high. Heart diseases; stroke; high blood pressure; hypercholesterolemia; certain cancer; sleep apnea; osteoarthritis; gallbladder diseases; fatty liver disease; Gastro esophageal reflux disease; as well as Gout.
Another risk that might result from obesity is asthma. It has been shown that, children also are at risk of suffering from asthma. Those boys who seem to be overweight tend to have higher risk of as compared to girls. The impacts of asthma are much greater in children who happen to be non-allergic. Recent studies have concluded that, children who suffer most from asthmatic condition are those suffering from obese, as compared to those who are non-obese asthmatic children. Those children suffering from obese and are asthmatic, tend to wheeze more, need more medication as compared to their counterpart. They also end up making more visits to emergency rooms.
It has also been shown that, obese can also have several serious psychological effects on children. One of the biggest problems incurred is the self-esteem issues that can result from discrimination at social level. Recent studies have rated obese children on their general qualities of life; it has been surprising that, they score the same with cancer patients in chemotherapy. When such children are asked to fill out a questionnaire rating their capabilities in performing day to day activities, for instance getting along with others in their peer groups, keeping up with the rest of the class in schools, sleeping well, playing sports, as well as walking a distance which is more than one kilometer. The obese children score very low in such areas, these in one way or the other shows that, their quality of life is very low, parents also filling similar questionnaire about their children, ranked them even lower, in their assessment of their kids' life quality, (Ogden, et al, 2008).
The society, media and culture also in one way or the other has been sending powerful messages about individual's body weight ideals. For ladies, this includes, thin ideal, and urging to exercise and diet. On the other hand, messages to boys reiterate a muscular body as well as the pressure to body builds, and perhaps make use of potentially harmful dietary supplements along with steroids. Though gender has not been identified as risk factor that contributes to children in children, the pressured suppressed against girls to become thin, might end up putting them at a greater risk of for the development of disorders associated to eating behaviors, or any other related mood symptoms.
On the other hand, though boys have been provided with a wider range of acceptable body structures, they are still at risk for the development of disordered eating and body picture disturbances. Another disease is cancer. Cancer happens when cells in one body part for instance, the colon, grows abnormally, or out of control. This could possibly spread to other body parts. Obesity in one way or the other increases the risks of contacting cancer. In man obesity increases the risk of colon cancer, rectal cancer, while in women; it may increase breast cancer among other diseases. It is not also clearly known how obesity increases cancer risks. However, it has been explained that, fats manufacture hormones that affects cell growth affects resulting to cancer. In addition, it has also been explained that, eating or physical practices that might lead to obesity, also cont5ributes to cancer.
Another disease is Apnea. This is a sleeep disorder that is characterized by interruptions of an individual's breathing while he or she is sleeping. People suffering from sleep apnea often snore loudly snores, as they also experience day time sleeping. This risk is higher for these suffering from obese. Overweight children have more weight stored around his or her neck, and throughout the body, such people process substances that causes inflammation. As an effect, inflammation in the neck can be a risk factor for sleep apnea.
Future health effects and diseases
One of the biggest concerns that are been troubling the society is the increasing number of children which are afflicted with type 2 diabetes. This is a disease that previously only affected adults. In the last two or so decades, the statistics showing the number of children and adults who happen to have been afflicted with this kind of disease have risen to about 50%. In the current times, around 25 percent of children as well as 30% of adults are struggling with obesity.
Research has shown that, more children who suffer from obesity develop into obese adults. Parallel to the increase in obesity, is the increase in the number of children and adults suffering from type 2 diabetes, which is also referred to as insulin dependent diabetes. Throwing obesity into the question makes this type of diabetes to be much difficult to deal with. It can even make the body to develop an insulin resistance. Though more than 80% of individuals suffering from type 2 diabetes are obese, it is not clearly known such circumstances do occur. Some have tried to explain that, obese makes some cells to undergo some changes, hence less effective at blood sugar usage. As a result, pressure is exerted on some cells that produces insulin hence wear off, (Clayson, 2011).
The medical impact of obesity during childhood stages, are just similar to these that are seen in obese adults.
Developing of obese conditions at childhood increases the risk for the development of coronary heart diseases. Another risk for heart attack is being overweight or in simple terms is being obese. Though this risk is less clear about obese children, in other terms, if the child is overweight or obese, but tent to have normal weight during adulthood, it is much difficult to determine of such individuals suffer from heart diseases. However, this is connected to the fact that, the number of children remaining obese in adulthood is high, hence as an adult, there now exist the risk for contacting heart disease, together with other conditions that are affected by overweight, (Kathe, 2011).
It has been suggested by some medical doctors that, the diet pills that are being used in the obesity treatment, have lots of side effects in times to come. Generally, to adults, such pills are safe as their body has developed fully and have the capability of overcoming the side effects of diet pills. For instance, they might increase the blood pressure or even inhibit fat absorption, which are very bad effects of diet pills.
It has also been shown that, obesity slices one-third to around three quarters of a year of overall life expectancy. This will depend on the individuals' race along with gender. This will mean that children suffering from obesity will die earlier in future as compared to there counterparts, (Kathe, 2011).
Childhood obesity has proved to be a very serious problem world wide. Current out of five children seen, around two of them are suffering from obesity. This is a serious issue, just because, childhood obesity gives rise to a number of diseases like; heart diseases, stroke, asthma, blood pressure cancer, diabetes among others as mentioned in the main body. Apart from disease suffering, they also experience decreased physical capabilities. For instance, such like children may not be able to run as fast as other children who are normal.
Nevertheless such children experiences emotional problems; as they are in most cases discriminated by their counterparts. On the other hand, medical researchers have researched on the topic and provided some solutions. However, just as other treatment drugs, they also have some positive and negative effects. In addition, obese has reduced the life expectance; hence most people will still die at their young age.