ABC Medical Center > Childhood obesity

What is Childhood obesity?

21:55 - 4 May , 2021


It is a serious condition with a high incidence in recent years, in which there is an excessive amount of body fat, which causes a series of associated diseases and complications, such as diabetes or hypertension, conditions that were previously identified as adult conditions, and that today, with increasing frequency, occur at younger ages, putting children’s and adolescents’ health at risk.

Childhood obesity not only produces physical problems, but also psychological ones, since it affects the child’s self-esteem, and can cause anxiety and depression.

Hence the importance of preventing obesity by promoting a healthy culture of having a balanced diet and performing some physical activity daily. Starting to prevent obesity in a child is to prevent diseases in the future and provide a better quality of life in all its stages.

The main causes of childhood obesity are a sedentary lifestyle, poor nutrition, and excess calories ingested, which causes a vicious circle in which constant weight gain is expected.

Likewise, a series of social, cultural, genetic, and hormonal potential risks that influence obesity have been identified:

  • Consuming too much sugar, fat, and carbohydrates.
  • Sedentary lifestyle.
  • Family history of obesity.
  • Stress and anxiety.
  • Certain medications such as cortisone.

Obesity causes serious complications in a child, affecting their life at a physical, psychological, and sociocultural level:

  • Sleep apnea.
  • Fatty liver.
  • Anxiety.
  • Depression.
  • Diabetes.
  • High cholesterol levels.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Aching joints.
  • Breathing difficulties.

Diagnosis and treatment Childhood obesity

By calculating your child’s body mass index (BMI), the doctor will determine the degree of obesity they suffer from, supported by blood tests to check glucose, cholesterol, and hormone levels.

Once the degree of obesity has been established, treatment focuses on changing eating habits and physical activity, although drugs or, in severe cases, bariatric surgery may also be necessary.

To establish an optimal diet, you need to control the quality and quantity of the food your child consumes, so you should:

  • Give them more vegetables.
  • Minimize processed foods, fats, carbohydrates, and sugars.
  • Avoid sweetened sodas and juices.
  • Eradicate fast food.
  • Limit portions.

As for physical activity, establish a daily training program that keeps your child active and allows them to burn calories, as well as improve their physical condition.

At the Nutrition & Obesity Center, we offer you comprehensive care according to your needs to help you have a healthy lifestyle, control your weight, change your body composition, prevent and manage associated diseases, as well as improve your physical and sports performance.


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  • mayoclinic.org
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  • sos-bariatria.com
  • medlineplus.gov
  • medigraphic.com
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  • Villanueva-Duque JA, Torres-Rodríguez LE, Mota-García A. Situación de la obesidad y el sobrepeso en niños y jóvenes del estado de Jalisco. Sal Jal. 2020;7(3):173-178.
  • Shamah-Levy T, Cuevas-Nasu L, Méndez-Gómez HI, et al. Prevalencia y predisposición a la obesidad en una muestra nacional de niños y adolescentes en México. Salud Pública Mex. 2020;62(6):725-733.
  • Alarcón-Domínguez EE, Velasco-González LE, Medina-Carrillo L, et al. Influencia de factores perinatales y alimentarios sobre el desarrollo de sobrepeso y obesidad en lactantes. Rev CONAMED. 2020;25(2):66-74. doi:10.35366/94389.

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