How To Reduce Obesity Among The Youth

Obesity Among The Youth

I drive pass two schools on a daily basis, and the obesity among the young students sticks out like a sore thumb, more noticeable among the girls.

During the last carnival I watched some of the activities; which prompted me to have a conversation with a doctor friend, concerning the problem of obesity among a cross section of the community, most noticeable among the females.

The Netherlands was in the news recently, highlighting the problem of Obesity.

Between 2009 and 2011 the rate of obesity had doubled increasing health expenditure and retarding the growth of life expectancy. Again the rate was higher among females and inhabitants in the lower socio- economic bracket.

Comparative Obesity Rates

The US has the highest Obesity rate worldwide followed by the countries in the order shown. Japan and South Korea showing the lowest rate

US

Mexico

New Zealand

United Kingdom

OECD Countries

Germany

Belgium

Netherlands-12%

France

Switzerland

Japan

South Korea

The Obesity rates in the developing and third world countries are also growing at an alarming rate. The number of obese people almost quadrupled between 1980 and 2008.

It is Ironic that reports are showing that One-Third of the world’s population is obese and Two-Third of those are from developing countries.

There is no secret in linking Obesity rates to Health Care Expenditure. Or no surprise that Japan has the highest life expectancy rate.

The Netherlands has been addressing the Obesity problem and is experiencing a 12 % drop in the rate.

Visionary leadership and Health Education are mainly responsible for the results.

They are encouraging exercise, asking children to ride to school and eat more fruits, vegetables and promoting the drinking of more water. There are also refusing to co-sponsor events with Coca-Cola MacDonald’s and other fast foods establishments.

Recently I was engaged in a conversation with a local primary school teacher, who was trying to persuade her students against purchasing sugary drinks before school, during lunch break and after school. She was taking it upon herself to teach them to eat healthy.

The Authorities should show some visionary leadership and ban the vendors from selling their sugary products on or near the school premises.

I will also encourage this particular Teacher, who is enamored by her students to establish herself as a leader and lobby the authorities to tackle the obesity problem among the students.

Diabetes is a serious problem worldwide.

Children are under the care of public schools five days a week; the authorities should exercise some creative thinking and introduce measures to tackle the problem.

One such measure is a mandatory 30 minutes of exercise a day for all students; a brisk walk around the nearest Park of sports field.

The introduction of health education and spearheading healthy foods in the school meals, Preaching the importance of fruits and veggies and no sugary drinks, and the reduction in the consumption of sugar period.

Such actions will pave the way for a healthy lifestyle, reduction in health care costs and longevity.

If we are to seriously tackle the worldwide problem of Obesity; The schools are the first and best place to introduce healing measures. We are becoming a sick world without the means to cure our sickness.

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12 Comments


  1. Hi there,

    Great article!

    My son his and his friends are quite skinny. But some of my daughter’s friends are overweight, and it really saddens me deeply. I always encourage my kids to eat healthily, and I see good results:) When I look at these kids that are overweight, I really want to help, but I don’t know how. What would you say to those kids?. Now I ‘ve persuaded my daughter to walk with me 30 minutes every day. I hope she will be consistent!

    Thank you for this excellent post!


  2. Thank you for your efforts to raise awareness to the citizens of the world not just in the U.S. Me and my family proudly eat healthy regardless of what others might say. I agree that it has to start in the school systems where our youth spend a large majority of time. We have a long journey ahead of us. Continue the good fight!


  3. Thank you; what concerns me is the fact that the world is so concerned with human rights that parents are losing control of their children and we alloy the manufacture of crap for human consumption.


  4. Continue to do the best for your children and hope that their friends will take the hint, I an encouraging parents to lobby the authorities to introduce health education in schools, with a focus on eating healthy and the economic repercussions of unhealthy eating.Keep up the good work.


  5. Thank you so much for your article! I am a public school teacher and see this problem first hand among my students. I am often surprised to see the things that these kids eat. No wonder obesity is an ongoing problem! Even the school lunches that are provided seem to be very unhealthy. I would love to see these children eat more veggies and fruit!


  6. Thanks for your comments;  I am afraid you are in a position to help, even if only a few listens. I will be very appreciative if you can share the website with your students. i spoke to another school teacher recently who is trying to make a difference with her students; and some are very thankful that she cares.don’t be afraid to be proactive.


  7. Hello Courtney!

    It is really sad to know that obesity among children and teenager is increasing. This time of life when you should be most vivid and you are still developing your body and brain functions.

    The habits we learn as a child are most difficult to change later in life. It is possible but very hard. Therefore it is better not to develop bad eating habits at all and to get used to play and run around already as a small child. It is a great approach to introduce health education at school. Nevertheless it is not easy for the kids to change their habits if their parents is not a good example for them, eating unhealthy food.

    I think there should be harder restrictions for the food industry. They must produce healthier food with less sugar and less unhealthy fats.

    If people only would stop drinking sweetened drinks then the average obesity would decrease significantly.

    Thanks for an interesting article!

    Pernilla


  8. A little child shall lead them; work with the kids, put pressure on the manufacturers. Show the kids what they are doing to their future health and some might listen. Do what you can. Thanks for sharing.


  9. I find it interesting that the problem with obesity could double in only two years in the Netherlands! After this occurred, I’m sure they are working to keep more reliable stats.

    As for the lower economical brackets, this makes sense as they are more likely to purchase food from stores that offer higher calorie, lower nutrition food. The only way to make it taste really good would be condiments, which are usually filled with nothing but empty calories. What are you thoughts?


  10. It is ironic that the lower economic bracket are the worst affected, sugar and starch will do it; we need to use the waste land all around us to plant fruit trees and education education and possibly laws to stop the manufacture of unhealthy foods,-set standards. I can hear the cries -there goes freedom of choice, who is paying for the damage? Makes me angry how foolish we have become.


  11. This is really helpful and informative article! Thank you!
    My friend have diabetes, and I can see that this one of the most deadliest diseases!
    Today, childrens are very inactive and that is number one reason for obesity. With this informations you can help parents who should help their kids!


  12. Thanks for the comments, you are right, exercise and don’t forget diet; children consume too much sugar and junk food and not enough fruits and veggies.Encourage your friend to adopt a plant-based diet and introduce him or her to the website. Keep Healthy.

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