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J Family Med Prim Care. 2015 Apr-Jun;4(2):187-92. doi: 10.4103/2249-4863.154628.

Childhood obesity: causes and consequences.

Author information

1
Phd Scholar, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology, Udaipur, Rajasthan, India.
2
Senior Resident, Department of Pediatrics, Vardhmann Medical College and Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi, India.
3
Assistant Professor, Department of Hepatology, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi, India.
4
Research Scientist, Human Nutrition Unit, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.
5
CMO In Charge Emergency, Department of Clinical Research, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi, India.
6
Epidemiologist and Public Health Specialist, Department of Clinical Research, Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi, India.

Abstract

Childhood obesity has reached epidemic levels in developed as well as in developing countries. Overweight and obesity in childhood are known to have significant impact on both physical and psychological health. Overweight and obese children are likely to stay obese into adulthood and more likely to develop non-communicable diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular diseases at a younger age. The mechanism of obesity development is not fully understood and it is believed to be a disorder with multiple causes. Environmental factors, lifestyle preferences, and cultural environment play pivotal roles in the rising prevalence of obesity worldwide. In general, overweight and obesity are assumed to be the results of an increase in caloric and fat intake. On the other hand, there are supporting evidence that excessive sugar intake by soft drink, increased portion size, and steady decline in physical activity have been playing major roles in the rising rates of obesity all around the world. Childhood obesity can profoundly affect children's physical health, social, and emotional well-being, and self esteem. It is also associated with poor academic performance and a lower quality of life experienced by the child. Many co-morbid conditions like metabolic, cardiovascular, orthopedic, neurological, hepatic, pulmonary, and renal disorders are also seen in association with childhood obesity.

KEYWORDS:

Childhood obesity; consequences; epidemiology; lifestyle; non-communicable disease; overweight

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