The purpose of this studyis to test the hypothesis that “Parents are the cause of childhood obesity.
This study will look into the various causes of Obesity, Preventing measuresand to ascertain if parents are really the main cause. This has been achieved by collating differentsecondary data in form of reports, articles, journal, and primary studyinformation gathered in form of a quantitative and objective questionnaires.The questionnaire was given to people of different ages and background, especiallyparents and other people. The view and opinion of everyone above 18years isimportant as child obesity is a global issue and several factors contributes tothis global issue.According to the information gathered during the research,it is evident that childhood obesity is not caused by parents only but otherfactors contribute to it.
This factors includes: · Psychological factors.· Socioeconomic factors such as low incomeearners.· Medical condition.· Environmental factors.· Government and social policies.
The primary findings showed that:· Parents indulge their children in sugaryand fizzy drinks.· Parents gives medium and large portion offood to their children.· Parents allow their children to take partin physical activities.
· Parents are concerned about theirchildren’s weight.· Parents agreed that childhood obesity isglobal issue of concern. In conclusion, there are various other factors thatcauses obesity other than parents. in thedeveloped countries. Childhood obesity is a medical condition that affectschildren and teenagers due to abnormal fat accumulation in the body that mayaffect their health. A sign of childhood obesity is a weight well above theaverage for a child’s height and age.
1n 2015, Jeremy Hunt, the secretary ofstates, described childhood obesity as ‘a national emergency’. Bodymass index (BMI) is a measure used to determine childhood overweight andobesity. ` Obesity is defined as a BMI at or above the 95th percentile forchildren and teens of the same age and sex. BMI is calculated by dividing aperson’s weight in kilograms by the square of height in meters. In thisresearch, the cause of the rise in the level of childhood obesity will bediscussed and the different actions that can be applied to diminish it.
Childhood obesity has been recognized as an increasing health problem.Especially in the 21st Century, It is a predictor of eventual adultobesity and strongly linked to chronic lifestyle disease. The number ofchildren who continue to have unhealthy and potentially dangerous weight is anational public health concern. The problem is global and is graduallyaffecting and spreading among the developed and developing countries as it wasmore prevalence in developed countries (WHO, 2017).Obesity is defined as abnormal or excessive fataccumulation a person put on in relation to the weight measure against theheight. The Body Mass Index (BMI) for children is calculated converting the BMIinto a BMI centile that indicates whether a child’s BMI is within the healthyrange or not.
The age, sex, weight and height need to be measured accurately(Children normally has BMI between 25th and 75thcentiles. A BMI above the 91stcentiles is overweight and BMI above 98th centile is obese (WHO,2017).A major concern and question raised is why the level ofchildhood obesity is increasing at an alarming rate? This research focuses onparents as the cause for childhood obesity. There are several other factorsthat highlight different causes of childhood obesity such as genetics,environmental, medical, and psychological and socio economic conditions whichwill also be discussed. According to (Sugunendran, 2012) improper diet is a hugecontributor to child obesity. The formula for dealing with child obesity isthat the number of calories consumed daily must decrease and the level ofphysical activity done daily must increase. Parents often give their childrenfast and fatty food, high caloric snacks, juice and soda drinks and even worseis that this meals are consumed while watching television, playing videogame or on the computer. The high calorie intake consumed by youngsters has increase from 168calories per day to 586 per day compared to two decade ago when youngstersconsumed an extra 181 per day.
(Parenting, 2016).According to a nutritional report, children are at risk of obesity than everbefore because of the excessive large portion given to them. The infant andtoddler forum survey of 1000 British parents revealed that 79 per centroutinely give their children large portions (Independent, 2017). Children areoverweight or obese because their parents are feeding them with large excessiveportions of food. (NHS, 2017) Furthermore, the excessive portion of meals could also be attributed topoor breastfeeding at the onset of child’s life. ( Michiyo Yamakawa, 2017)argued that breastfeeding is associated with decreased risk of obesity. Studiesshowed breastfeeding children for the first six month is associated with slowerweight gain as a result of healthier eating pattern compared with children fedwith infant formula which increases the production of fat cells, fueling weightgain throughout childhood.
The UK has one the lowest breastfeeding rates inEurope with almost one in four new mothers never attempting breastfeeding.Therefore, 75 percent of babies in Britain drink formula as to breastfeeding.(The mail)The 2007 UK government Foresight report ‘Tackling obesities:Future Choices-Project report’ remains the most comprehensive investigation into obesity andits causes. One important action in this report is to modify the environment sothat it does not promote sedentary behavior or provide easy access toenergy-dense food. The aim is to help make the healthy choice the easy choicevia environmental change and action.
For instance, if lot of sweets andhigh-fat foods are kept around your house, then children are likely to eat themand gain weight. The same is true in the workplace: If the break room hasvending machines filled with candy, chips and soda, people may be tempted toconsume these diet-busting treats. The problem is particularly serious inlow-income neighborhoods, where it can be difficult to find grocers who offerhealthy foods such as fruit, vegetables and whole grains. (Public Health, 2013).
Another factor to consider is the children’s sleeping pattern, if the sleepingpattern of a child is bad, this may well lead to obesity. When parent do not devisea routine, it affects the children. When youngsters do not have enough sleep italter their levels of appetite -regulating hormones which enables then to eatmore than they have to.
Researcher found that children who does have a regularpattern of sleep are likely to be obese. (NHS, 2016) Lack of physical activity is anotherimportant factor related to obesity. Many people have jobs that involve sittingat a desk for most of the day. They also rely on their cars, rather thanwalking or cycling. For relaxation, busy lifestyle and also in an unsafeneighborhood. Parents tend to keep their children indoors watch TV, browse theinternet or play computer games, and rarely take regular exercise.
Children tend to copy their parents inactive lifestyle by spending too muchof their time watching television. This is the main reason why most childrenare obese because they are not active as they eat excessive large portionwithout doing and exercise and thereby adding weight gradually. But beingactive and staying active is key to children’s current and futurejoin a gym or otherwise encourage physical activity.Because safety is a big issue in poorer communities, playing outdoors may notbe a viable option. (Manson, 2008).Psychological factors that cause’s childhood obesity. Some children mayturn to food as a coping mechanism for dealing with problems or negativeemotions like stress, anxiety, or boredom.
Children struggling to cope with a divorce or death in the family mayeat more as a result.Childhood obesity is also caused by genetics. Children born into a familyof overweight people will be genetically predisposed to the condition,especially if high-calorie food is readily available and physical activity isnot encouraged. There is a high tendency of childhood obesity due tosocioeconomic factors. Children fromlow-income backgrounds are at increased risk for childhood obesity sincelow-income parents may lack the time and resources necessary to purchase andprepare healthy foods.
They result into fast food, which is cheaper and morereadily available in low-income communities (Education, 2006).Medical conditions although not common causes children obesity. There arecertain genetic diseases and hormonal disorders that can predispose a child toobesity, such as hypothyroidism, this is when the thyroid gland, is underactiveand does not release enough of the hormones that control metabolism.Prader-Willi syndrome is another genetic disorder affecting the part of thebrain that controls feelings of hunger. Children with this syndrome have anexcessive appetite and eat lot. AndCushing’s syndrome is a disorder in which your body is exposed too much of thehormone cortisol from overproduction in the adrenal glands or use ofmedications such as those for asthma.(Parenting, 2016)What are theconsequences of obesity in children? They are more likely to stay obese intoadulthood.
They are the risk of developing diabetes(type 2), asthma, cancer, and cardiovascular diseases at ayounger age.In conclusion, many obesity problems could be avoided. If parent areeducated of the need to enforce a healthier lifestyle at home, what childrenlearn at home about eating healthy, exercising and building the rightnutritional choices will eventually spill over into other aspects of theirlife.
This will have the major impact on the choices kids make when selectingfoods to eat at school and fast-food restaurants and decide on being active. Governmentand social rules could also possibly promote healthy behavior. Study indicatestaste, followed by hunger and price, are the most vital factors in adolescentssnack choices. Other studies prove that adolescents associate junk food withpleasure, individuality, and convenience, while fondness healthy food isconsidered odd. This recommends investment is required in changing meanings offood, and social views on eating behavior.
As proposed by the NationalTaskforce on Obesity (2005), fiscal policies such as taxing unhealthy options,providing incentives for the distribution of inexpensive healthy food, and financingconvenient recreational services or the esthetic quality of neighborhoods canenhance healthy eating and physical activity. Therefore it would be prejudicialto lay the blame of obesity in children solely on parents while there are somany other factors already highlighted. There are others factors that were mentioned in this review, nevertheless,this review has justify the notion that parent are not the sole cause ofchildhood obesity. This studywill analyse the hypothesis and find the proof which support and critique it.That:· Parentsare the cause of childhood obesity· Thereare other reasons that cause childhood obesity The completefacts that will be collected will enable us to determine if parents are trulythe reason of childhood obesity or if there are other factors that areresponsible for childhood obesity. The research methods used in this research project to gatherinformation were primary and secondary research. The primaryresearch was conducted by means of a questionnaire. 16 questions consist of closed questions to help create aquantitative data of the interviewees, which are put into different setsaccording to their responses and close ended questions which will producequalitative information of how parents and the people in the society’s opinionon the issue of childhood obesity.
The data forthe secondary research was gathered from books, journals, and websites relatedto the topic of research.Whilegathering the information used in this research, ethical issue was put intoconsideration. Interviewees were informed that their participation in thesurgery is voluntary as they are free to pull out without any need to givereasons. It also shows that their response is private and that their names willnot appear in any articles or reports and will only be used for researchpurpose only. There was also a consent form prepared for this purpose.
Obesity can be measured by a person’s excess weight inrelation to what the Ideal weightshould be when measured against the individual’s height.Obesity is defined as abnormal or excessive fataccumulation a person put on in relative to what the weight measure against theheight. The Body Mass Index (BMI) for children is calculated converting the BMIinto a BMI centile that indicates whether a child’s BMI is within the healthyrange or not. The age, sex, weight and height need to be measured accurately(Children normally has BMI between 25th and 75thcentiles. A BMI above the 91stcentiles is overweight and BMI above 98th centile is obese (WHO,2017). The researchfocuses on parents as the cause for childhood obesity .
Emphasis is laid on whythe level of childhood obesity is rising in the society. Who is to blame? parents? or are there others factors that isout of control of the parents. Althoughseveral other causes have emerged in recent time to proof that there otherfactors. Factors influencing obesity in children are not limitedto lack of healthy diet, poor breastfeeding or the meal portions. Several otherfactors such government policies, environmental and psychology factors alsoplays a major role.Research revealed that most youngsters are overweight dueto consumption of high calorie foods such as sugary beverages, unhealthy snacksand fizzy drinks. According to a pediatrician, childhood obesity is a result ofparent giving their children average or adult size portions of food.
A studyhas shown that when average portion of food were given to children over twoyears, they tend to eat more (NHS, 2016). This support the primary andsecondary research in this review.The primary research also indicated that consumption ofsugary beverage accompanied with Convenience foods, such as frozen dinners, salty snacks, and canned pastas,can also lead to unhealthy weight gain. Some children become obese theirparents work schedule, they don’t know how to choose or prepare healthy foodsor they could not easily afford fresh fruits and good meals.
(Parenting, 2016)Lackof consistent physical activity can be another cause of childhood obesity.People of all ages tend to increase weight when they’re inactive. Exerciseburns calories and helps you maintain a healthy weight. Children who aren’tencouraged to be active may be less possible to burn extra calories throughsports, time on the playground, or other forms of physical activity. Changingthe eating habits of obese children is completely essential. Parental influenceshapes your child’s eating patterns. Most kids eat what their parents buy, sohealthy eating needs to start with parents.
(Mansion, 2008).Psychologicalissues attribute to obesity in some children. Kids and teens who are bored,stressed, or depressed may result in eat more to cope with negativeemotions.
(Public health 2013).Altering the eating habits of obesechildren is absolutely essential. Parental influence shapes your child’s eatingpatterns. Most kids eat what their parents buy, so healthy eating needs tostart with the parents. (Parenting, 2016) Environmentalfactor is very important. Living in an unsafe environment and thus cannot play outdoordue to the dangers involved from leaving children unaccompanied.
Also parents desiredto drive their children to school rather than allow then to walk according toprimary research due to unsafe environment. In the past, youngsters walked orrode their bikes to school, this has changed due to the unsafe environmental.Increase your child’s level of physical activity to help them shed weightsafely. Walking to school would have been a daily exercise routine for thechildren.
(Bhadoria et al, 2015)Limit screen time too. Kidswho spend several hours a day watching television, playing computer games, orusing their smartphones or other devices are more likely to be overweight.According to studies reported by Harvard school of Public health, the reason for this maybe twofold.
First, screen time eats into time that could be spent doingphysical activities instead. And second, more time in front of the TV meansmore time for snacking,(Healthline, 2005)If the sleeping pattern of a child is poor, the result couldlead to obesity. When children lack enough sleep, its changes their levels ofappetites-regulating hormones, this makes then to eat more than they shouldhave eaten. Researchers have found out that children as young as two years oldthat does not have a consistent sleep pattern will likely to be obese by theage of seven. (NHS, 2016)Medical condition such as Prader-WilliSyndrome is a complex genetic disorder that is present from birth.
Childrensuffering with this syndrome can eat everything and anything. They have anunusual appetite and do whatever it takes to get food without minding theeffect of excess food. (Parenting 2016).
Furthermore, psychological factors causedchildhood obesity some do not know how to react to negative situation, stressand anxietyIn this research, we have discussed aboutother factors such as a genetics psychological factors, government policies,socioeconomic factors and environmental factors also contribute to childhoodobesity.The primary and secondary data support thefacts that parents are not the sole cause of childhood obesity. . Gatheringthe secondary research information was not difficult but could be cumbersome.Sieving through information from books, journals and website and extractingneeded information.
The primary research was not easy to gather as someparticipants were not willing to fill the questionnaire which slow down theresearch. It would have been quicker to do interview in the future. Some of theparticipants do not have children of their own.
So their opinion that parentsare the cause for childhood obesity may not be suitable. Questions about their weight and how tocontrol weight will have been suitable.Lastly, there were some general questions in thequestionnaires.
This will only gather qualitative data which is not as suitableas quantitative data. Parents need to beeducated about giving their children proper and healthy diet. This will enable parentsto overhaul the entire family nutrition diet by limiting sweets and soft drinksintake.encourage more home made food and cut back on your fast food consumptionand make a conscious effort to cook more. Preparing a meal and eating togetheris not only healthy in a nutritional sense, but it’s also an excellent way tosneak in some family time.The government should provide more fund to school toenable proper meal for school children.
There should also be policy to restrictsugary food and sweet in their lunch boxes. The government to create awarenessto help parents and children goingthrough psychological or emotion issues. Children should beencourage to engage in activity such as: swimming, football or any activitythat take away boredom and reduce weight gain. Saturdays might be suitable formost parent due to the hectic work schedule.Parent also shouldencourage their children to walk to school. This will serve as a from of dailyexercise.
A daily routine strictly adhereto be the family which should include including the sleeping pattern. Childrenshould have regular sleeping time. Government to create incentives toencourage nursing moothers to stay home and breastfeed their children for the first six month. In conclusion, childhood obesity is a global issue thatrequires a global attention from the government, parents and the society atlarge.