by A. Grano on February 17th, 2012 at 11:35 am
With rates of childhood obesity steadily on the rise, pediatricians are now saying once-standard growth charts are no longer applicable. Approximately 17% of youths are obese, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This upward trend also means that once-standard school accommodations must be modified, requiring separate chairs and desks for students who cannot fit in the original seating.
This does not come without an emotional price tag, as a child may endure ridicule from their peers for being overweight, as well as having to live with the stigma of not “fitting in”. However, this divide may be short-lived if the obesity trend does not cease to slow down, as several school and industrial furnishings industries have reported that bigger seats have been selling better than the standard sizes in recent years. Clothing companies have also begun catering to the expanding waistlines of today’s children, with plus-sized lines for youth on the rise.
Unfortunately, while these obese children may not have to worry about their seating or clothing in the future, their long-term health will likely not be without consequences. The risk of joint problems, heart disease, high cholesterol and high blood pressure all increases with added weight, as well as the chance of developing diabetes. Further, many of these conditions may begin prematurely.
Helping an obese child reach a healthy weight cannot be stressed enough. Consult your child’s pediatrician for getting started on an appropriate diet and exercise regimen.
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