Childhood Obesity

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The first issue that contributes to the nation’s obesity rates is that of learned behaviors. Children are very impressionable at a young age and often may mimic what their parents or older siblings do as a form of learning. Therefore if a sibling or adult has poor eating habits a child will develop them through the learning process and will not know that the behavior is not conducive to a healthy lifestyle (Kaneshiro, 2012). Children are also very good at understanding when to stop eating due to the sensation of fullness. Children usually stop as soon as their bodies signal that they are full. But this natural sensation may be overridden especially after significant amounts of training from bad habits. Often times, parents force their children to clean their plates, and often offer some sort of incentive to do so such as a sweet food item, or more video game time. Unfortunately, this standard of plate cleaning has led the many of the nation’s youth to develop the ability to ignore their sense of fullness and continue to consume calories that eventually lead to excess weight. Children are also prone to developing eating behaviors that they will carry into adulthood. In fact, many eating habits are developed at a young age. These eating habits impact what type of foods an individual prefers, when, where, and how much to eat. In addition to, other learned eating behaviors are ones of reward, comfort food, and food or candy to express love (Kaneshiro, 2012). These learned habits develop quickly, are extremely hard to break, and may inadvertently cause a child to be obese. The next issue that is contributing to the alarming rate of childhood obesity in the United States is lifestyle choices. The children of yesteryear... ... middle of paper ... ...J. F., Cutter, C. L., Lou, D., Spoon, C., Wilson, A. L., Ding, D., … Orleans, C. T. (2014). Active Living Research: Creating and Using Evidence to Support Childhood Obesity Prevention. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 46(2), 195–207. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2013.10.019 Thornton, J. (2013, August 15). Turning the tide on childhood obesity. Washington Jewish Week, p. 29. Gaithersburg, United States. Vericker, T. C. (2014). Children’s School-Related Food and Physical Activity Behaviors Are Associated with Body Mass Index. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, 114(2), 250–256. doi:10.1016/j.jand.2013.07.046 Whelan, E.-M., Russell, L., 10, S. S. | M., & 2010. (n.d.). Confronting America’s Childhood Obesity Epidemic. Retrieved from http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/healthcare/report/2010/05/10/7815/confronting-americas-childhood-obesity-epidemic/

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