Research Paper: Childhood Obesity

Sample Research Paper

Words 2,100

This research paper is about increased childhood obesity in children. First and foremost is the decrease in physical activity among today’s youth, associated with an increase in television viewing and computer use.

According to Alpert, Hashimi, (1993) there are a number of causes for the increased rates of obesity in today’s children. First and foremost is the decrease in physical activity among today’s youth, associated with an increase in television viewing and computer use. Another element is the increased use of microwaves, “which displaces parents from having control over what their children eat”; an increase in skipped meals; and an increased consumption of fast-food and soft drinks, which account for 8% of the average child’s caloric intake. Finally, Alpert, Hashimi (1993) feel that the introduction of new food products, approximately 12,000 of them annually, may be another possible factor.

According to Kohl and Hobbs (2003), babies who are breast-fed have less risk for developing childhood obesity than those who are bottle-fed. Thirteen thousand German children were assessed at the time of school entry, between five and six years of age. If a child scored in the top three percent of body mass index (BMI), he was considered obese.

The researchers discovered the risk reduction could not be attributed to social class, income or lifestyle. They believe the association of breast-feeding and normal weight is due to nutrients found in breast milk. For example, breast fed babies have lower blood insulin levels, which is important to the deposition of fat. Also, breast milk contains “bioactive” compounds that seem to inhibit the development of fat cells. Gorton (2004) also commented on this issue in her article by discussing how breast-fed babies tend toward lower daily intakes of protein and calories; other research has shown that higher intake of protein during early childhood increases the risk of obesity during later childhood (Gorton, 1012). “Preventing obesity and its consequences may be an important argument in the drive to encourage breast feeding in industrialized countries,” write Dr. Rudiger von Kries and colleagues at Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich, Germany (Conner, 147-150).

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