The Danger of Childhood Obesity in the 21st Century

Many reputable medical studies indicate that the number of children who are battling body-weight related problems is on the rise. Childhood obesity in developed countries such as the US has gone up by 25 percent in the past two decades. Based on recent research, it’s estimated that one out of four children is battling obesity in the United States, putting their future in danger in many ways.

Future medical problems

According to a study by John Hopkins University, children are less likely to encounter health problems as a result of excessive weight. However, childhood obesity increases their chances of developing acute weight-related health complications by the time they turn 30 years of age. The US, like many of the developed nations, is likely to experience a rapid rise in the number of heart, kidney and musculoskeletal diseases in the next few decades.

According to Harvard School of Economics, the country currently spends close to $300 billion on treating obesity-related complications, a figure that is likely to double soon if the current child obesity problems prevail.

Drug development problems

Another research predicts that the cost of developing new drugs may also go up as a result of the current child obesity problems. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, pharmaceutical companies spend an average of $2.6 billion to develop a single line of a new drug. It also takes years to test and release drugs to the market, meaning that the world may run out of effective medicines that can combat obesity-related diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

Premature deaths

When you think about the number of diseases that can come about as a result of childhood obesity, it’s easy to see how the weight-related complications are likely to contribute to the rise of imminent premature deaths. An individual’s chances of surviving an array of ailments which may attack his or her body at the same time are slim, especially if these illnesses include:

– Diabetes.

– Heart disease.

– Asthma.

– Blood circulation disorders.

– Sleep apnea.

– Fatty liver disease.

– Kidney diseases.

– Anxiety and/or depression.

It’s possible to avoid all these by encouraging the current generation of children to adopt healthy eating lifestyle habits. As a parent, you should accustom your children to opt for healthy foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Also, reduce your child’s sedentary time by encouraging him or her to participate in physical activities.