Wednesday, October 07, 2009

How Can Recession Obesity Affect The American Children?

In 2008, a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), reported that nearly 32 percent of American children were overweight and 16 percent were obese.

Meanwhile, between 1980 and 1999, the obesity rate had tripled and this no doubt had created an epidemic. Poor diet that is heavy on fat and sugar with little consumption of fruits and fresh vegetables, and lack of exercise were blamed to be responsible for such phenomenon.

Obese children not only have a higher chance of becoming obese adults but are also at a higher risk of developing heart disease, high cholesterol and Type-2 diabetes.

Now, there is another possible force, which in the opinion of researchers, will help increase the obesity rate. Researchers from Duke University argued that the prevailing economic downturn would probably put American children at risk of ‘recession obesity’.

‘Recession obesity’ is a term for unhealthy side effects of people who lose their jobs and health insurance, then drop their gym memberships, delay medical treatment, and eat cheaper but less healthy meals. As fast food is cheap and filling, its consumption is on the rise during the economic downturn. The researchers fear that parents would substitute for their children fast food, high carbohydrate and high sugar-content food for healthy food. This would surely cause an uptick in the rate of overweight children and adolescents.

After analyzing dozens of indicators, the researchers compiled the 2009 Child Well-Being Index. The index tracks how American children are faring socially, emotionally, in terms of education and health. It aims to assess how American children are faring today, comparing their current situation with the past. They also project what these children might face in the future. This year’s index includes a special report on the impact of the current recession on the American children.


  1. This is a great article which highlights a trend that is occuring in the UK. Statistics over here are already showing that less educated, less afluent children are more likely to be obese in the Uk and the recession is amplifying this trend. Gym memberships are on the decline as people are trying to save pennies. We need to spread the message that weight loss does not need to cost a lot of money.

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  2. A person becomes obese over the years because of excessive eating. But if one will have the courage to shed those fats then it will also take some years. Persistence is necessary to gain back the healthy body to avoid unwanted complications.
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