Consequences of Childhood Obesity

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Obesity puts children and adolescents on a course toward chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes later in life. The implications for their health and the cost of health care are serious. Dr. Edward Hill looks at the consequences of childhood obesity in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Childhood obesity has both immediate and long-term effects on health and well-being.

Overweight children are at risk for serious health conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterolall once considered exclusively adult diseases.

Children who are unhappy with their weight may develop unhealthy dieting habits and eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia. They may be more prone to depression, as well as substance abuse.

Overweight children are at risk of developing medical problems including:

Bone and joint problems

Shortness of breath

Restless or disordered sleep patterns

Tendency to mature earlier

Liver and gallbladder disease, and

Depression

Children with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes are at risk for serious adult medical conditions like heart disease, heart failure and stroke. Preventing or treating obesity in children may reduce the risk of developing these conditions as they get older.

Healthy lifestyle habits, including healthy eating and physical activity, can lower the risk of becoming obese and developing related diseases.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.