• Battle of the Bulge: Could your child be obese?

    With news of a 60-kilogram boy in China, it may be time to review your child’s weight, and eating habits, and how you can nip obesity in the bud.
    by Stephanie F. Esguerra .
  • chubby boyIn a country predominantly occupied by slim and petite frames, it’s a striking discovery that obesity is slowly becoming a problem in China.

    In an article published recently by Reuters, three-year-old Lu Zhihao is said to weigh a staggering 60 kilograms. That’s about three times the ideal weight of boys his age.

    Lu Zhihao has to lumber around with his severely bowed legs and folds of fat hampering overall movement. The toddler constantly clamors for food and his parents share how he would even throw tantrums when declined snacks.

    Experts say the problem is a growing reality in the country, referred to as the “Little Emperor” syndrome. With an increasingly prosperous economy and given China’s one-child policy, it appears that richer parents have become more indulgent of their children’s wants.

    An estimated one out of almost every five children in China are overweight, seven percent of whom are obese. Overweight is defined as the condition wherein an individual weighs 10 percent more than their ideal weight. Obesity, on the other hand, refers to the excessive amount of fat in the body, resulting in increased health risks.

    You would think that a developing country like the Philippines would not have the same issue with problems of poverty and hunger all around, but according to government surveys and     research, obesity is also a fast-rising concern in the Philippines.

    The 2008 National Nutrition Survey by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST), for instance, shows that the prevalence of overweight and obese adults has increased by 2.6 percent.

    A variety of factors, including a sedentary lifestyle, genetics, food intake, and the pervasiveness of fast food restaurants, among others, play an influential role on these figures. Overweight children are prone to developing heart problems, type 2 Diabetes and high blood pressure.

    Here are ways to tell if your child is obese:
    •    Higher than normal body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference. Body mass index is a measure of an adult’s weight in relation to his or her height.
    •    Difficulty in performing lengthy activities
    •    Restlessness; easily exhausted
    •    Breathlessness

     

    Click here to read more about obesity.

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