Obesity and Careful Physical Examination Essay

2401 Words Dec 21st, 2012 10 Pages
The past several decades have seen an escalating trend in the rate of childhood obesity not only in the United States where 25%-30% of children are affected, but also in many of the industrialized nations. Childhood obesity has continued to be a major issue in the public health care system. The economic cost of the medical expenses as well as the lost income resulting from the complications of obesity both in children and adults has been estimated at almost $100 billion (Barnes, 2011). Overweight children are more exposed to the danger of becoming overweight in their adulthood unless they ensure healthier eating habits and exercise. It is worth noting that the current lifestyle in which many children spend a lot of time watching …show more content…
In addition, the rate of childhood obesity for children aged between 2 and 5 years increased from 5% to 10.4% between 1971 and 2008 (Marks, 2011).

In other industrialized countries such as Germany, about 8% of children in 3rd and 5th grade in the state of Saxony are obese while in Southern Germany, 13% of adolescents aged 13 years have been considered obese. Overall, the prevalence of childhood obesity in many industrialized nations has reached epidemic proportions (Kiess et al. 2001, p. 30). However, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2011, p. 42) notes that the rapid increase in the prevalence of childhood obesity during the last 10 years has slowed down or even leveled.

Nevertheless, among boys, the heaviest ones have continued to increase their weight in a significant way and racial and ethnic disparities have also been observed. For instance, Richardson (CPNP.) notes that the risk for overweight and obesity is higher among all ethnic minorities in the U.S than whites irrespective of socioeconomic status (2010, p. 88). In addition, non-Hispanic girls and Hispanic boys have been shown to be disproportionately affected by childhood obesity. In addition, compared with preschoolers, older children and teens are at a higher risk of becoming obese (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011, p. 42). Despite these notable disparities, both girls and boys of all ages and from all racial and ethnic groups have been affected by obesity

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