Obesity in Children in India

Did you know that India is the second largest country in the world to have the most obese children after China? The statistics are not just alarming but also amusing. Obesity in Children in India is taking an ugly turn with almost 1.44 crore children who are currently overweight and can be considered obese in India. 

I have personally been judged because “according to many people” my children look lean. Is lean unhealthy ? My children are extremely active kids, eat their own food, choose what to eat and how much to eat and fall in the IDEAL WEIGHT category as per their pediatrician’s report and WHO growth scale ! Am i Worried ? NOT AT ALL ! 

Image Source – https://www.kinetickidsacademy.co.uk/child-obesity-problem-bexley/

Obesity in Children in India

The staggering numbers should actually come as no surprise. Indians have a fixation with fair skinned chubby babies right from the time when a baby is born. Mothers get crazy just at the thought of their children not eating food and it seems that it becomes the biggest issue in their lives. Their whole sole motto becomes of ways how to feed their babies / children without knowing, whether the child actually is hungry !

These statistics show a growing trend of unhealthy crises. We as parents take pride in the fact if our new born are born chubby. Most parents feel worried if their children don’t put on weight and don’t look over weight. While it’s a legitimate concern, but making a child obese by making the child over weight is unhealthy in so many ways. A child who gains weight gradually, and is able to achieve all his milestones on time – is a healthy child. An overweight child may ultimately become an overweight adult. Obesity brings a plethora of diseases along with it like – Diabetes, thyroid, PCOS, BP, Cancer, heart and other life-threatening conditions.

Image Source – https://goo.gl/oYhJ6Z

Some of the major reasons of obesity in children are –

  1. Decrease in physical activity
  2. Increase in use of mobiles, watching TV
  3. Unnecessary snacking
  4. Irregular portion size, or eating with distraction

Some other factor that contribute to obesity in children are –

  1. Easy access to cold drinks and deep fried junk food
  2. Excessive sugar because of cold drinks
  3. Instead of walking, using car or two wheeler
  4. Children prefer to stay at home and watch TV or play on mobile rather than go out for a outdoor game or play in the park
  5. High blood pressure and high cholesterol

Image Source – https://newlifegenetics.com/child-obesity-and-genetic-weight-loss/

Effects of obesity in children are –

  1. Psychological like – harassment, bullying or discrimination, extreme pressure to do well in studies and life, depression and low self esteem
  2. Physical like – high BP, diabetes, heart and sleep problems, cancer or other disorders.

How can this be controlled?

  1. Encourage lot of activity – enroll them in a dance / aerobics class or children workout classes.
  2. Take them to park to play or indulge in any outdoor game.
  3. Give household chores so that it helps them move
  4. Limit junk to once a week or reserve it for special occasions ONLY
  5. Focus more on vegetables and fruits
  6. Encourage children to self feed and don’t force them to finish their meals.
  7. Respect their choice of quantity of food children want to eat

Image Source – https://goo.gl/tXcX2H

  1. Offer less portions to begin with and refill if the children ask for more
  2. Cut down on sugar and unhealthy oils. Choose healthy cooking oil
  3. Snack on healthy snacks like – makhanas, dry fruits, chiwda, fruits, steamed sauted’ vegetables
  4. Limit cold drinks
  5. Try and feed your children a protein rich diet as much as possible
  6. Last but not the least – be supportive and respect what they want to eat

“People who shrug off weight gain do so at their own risk — risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and other life-threatening conditions,” said Christopher Murray from the University of Washington.

Image Source – http://www.villageyouth.org/child-obesity/


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Until next time – take care, stay connected with me and God Bless


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This is a personal blog that chronicles my own experiences. Readers must take proper medical advice (if any discussed above) before trying anything at home

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15 thoughts on “Obesity in Children in India

  1. thank god you’ve addressed this issue!! Half of the times advise about a chubby or ‘healthy’ child falls on deaf ears and people refuse to believe that a child can be fat. very well elaborated!!

  2. Yes, obesity in children is becoming a issue. This post is truly a eye opener. I will share this post with other parents too.

  3. Its funny that people think that kid with more weight is healthy but they do not know he/she can become so lazy. I also agree about role of tv, mobiles, video games, playstations etc which keeps them away from sports. This only increases weight and make them so unfit.

    Ashh

  4. This is such an important topic to talk about. My son is slim and im always judged when I come to India. Everyone says I donot take care of my son and doesnt give him food. I was told by doctors here in the UK that obese kids are lazy and can easily get prone to diseases. As long as kids are active, they are good. Thanks for sharing this! I think my inlaws need to see this post!

    Akanksha

  5. I feel like taking a Mike and reading this out in front of my relatives who keep judging my aunt for not force feeding her daughters! Golu is not healthy! People dont realise that

  6. I am a very lean person from a very small age, and I have been judged for that too!! But I believe, being skinny is much better than being obese!! And yes, I too follow this method of not force feeding my kids!

  7. This post was truly an eye-opener and needs to be read by every parent thanks a lot for laying emphasises on healthy eating and corrective measures

  8. It’s high time we should start focusing on this serious issue. I get your points for main reasons behind obesity! Most importantly treat obese kids normal so that we don’t get disheartened or negative by any mean and help them overcome this issue.

  9. Good eye opener for many people with kids. We all end up trying to our kids engaged by being online but little do we reliaze that it may cause obesity. I definitely think that playing around and keep other things in balance like TV, Mobile will definitely help.

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