With childhood obesity on the rise, should parents worry about the weight of their babies?
Childhood obesity is more prevalent in the Northeast, followed by the Midwest, South and West. It is also more prevalent in cities than in rural areas.
Children who weigh too much face a broad array of health problems, with type 2 diabetes leading the list.
Ask a parent to name the greatest health threat to children and you'll hear about drinking or drugs. Rarely will anyone cite obesity -- even though it can lead to heart disease, high blood pressure or diabetes.
Children who are inactive—spending time watching TV or sitting at a computer—are at higher risk for obesity, especially when their diet contains lots of high-calorie foods and beverages.
Most children become obese because of a poor diet, lack of physical activity, and other lifestyle issues. In rare cases, however, a child’s excess weight may be because of a specific illness.
Doctors think teens who have the metabolic syndrome face a high risk for the early onset of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
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