The weight of obese children increases, teenagers weighing 150 kilos are no exception

The weight of obese children increases, teenagers weighing 150 kilos are no exception

The weight of normal children increases, they are no exception I gained 150 kilos

Obesity – illustrative photo.

Brno – The number of overweight children is increasing despite the renewed possibility to play sports and attend clubs without restrictions. According to doctors, bad habits from the times of restrictions associated with the covid-19 pandemic, such as snacking out of boredom, are being carried over to the present. Experts do not expect the situation to improve. This was stated in a press release by Kateřina Bednaříková, pediatrician and organizer of the pediatric conference Motion for Life, which has been taking place in Blansko since Thursday.

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While 10.3 percent of children suffered from obesity in 2016, five years later it was already 16 percent. At the same time, this increase cannot be stopped, and doctors see another problem – the weight of obese children has increased significantly. “It is not unusual for children around thirteen to fourteen years of age to weigh 140 to 150 kilograms. We never saw that before. Various diseases are also appearing that we were not used to in children just a few years ago. These are, for example, high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes . From our experience, there is no indication that the situation should improve, rather the opposite,” said Bednaříková, who is also the director of the Křetín Children's Hospital.

The situation worsened during the anti-pandemic measures, when children had constant access to food at home and lost any routine. Some gained 15 or 20 kilograms during this period. Veronika Koch Ondrová, a psychologist from the Krétín hospital, perceives that many children have learned to eat boredom and are unable to eliminate these habits.

Although there were more obese children during this period, according to doctors, this is rather the culmination of a long-term trend. Children have a long-term higher intake of calories than their expenditure. It leads to the development of overweight and later obesity. They are also used to snacking more, eating between main meals and often eating at various fast foods. A huge portion of calories are represented by sugary drinks or energy drinks. Since the number of overweight children has increased, they socialize and support each other more.

The hospital in Blanensko has 40 beds and, in addition to obese children, also helps children with recurrent respiratory diseases. According to the director, the capacity is full and there is enormous interest, especially for the summer dates. She still sees major flaws in the parents' approach and would like to see even more of them deal with obesity in their offspring.

“Parents don't want to see it or think they can handle it themselves. They are also more anxious, but they should worry above all about their children's health. In addition to high blood pressure and diabetes, obesity also puts an enormous load on the joints, which brings with it all sorts of orthopedic problems. Asthma also occurs more often in obese children,” added Bednaříková.

< p>The children spend four weeks in the treatment center and learn there how to eat properly and what are the possibilities of movement. Besides, they also have a school there. In a month, they usually manage to lose around seven kilograms, but above all, the metabolism starts and the child can continue in the home environment.