It is widely acknowledged that the childhood obesity is to be tackled on a war footing since the future of several nations is in the hands of these youngsters. Childhood obesity raises the specter of future heart disease and diabetes victims. An additional threat has now emerged. Fatty liver is a condition involving infiltration of fat into the liver tissue. Chronic alcoholism is the commonest cause for fatty liver. Fatty infiltration of the liver can progress to liver cirrhosis and liver scarring. Finally, there may be liver necrosis when the liver cells would start dying. This condition can prove to be fatal.
One of the consequences of childhood obesity is that it can lead to fatty infiltration of the liver. This kind of fat accumulation has been called nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. In the UK alone, it has been estimated that nearly half a million children are affected by nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. In the US, where also the situation is worse, the numbers are likely to be higher. If this situation continues to prevail at this rate, many of these children may not live long enough to get heart disease or, diabetes.
Technology is partly to blame for all the problems faced by children of the western countries. For centuries, children preferred to be outside playing and this was healthy. Now we have technology bringing the world into the homes. Why should children go out? Thus, children can be found at home, sitting in front of TV or computer. They also spend long hours in the sitting posture, adding to the obesity problem. Snacking is another major problem. There is too much eating and the eating frequency has increased. Thus, the children are consuming more of empty calories and that too, more often.
Some interesting statistics are available on why childhood obesity has spread. It has been shown that the average calorie intake in children has increased by about 350 calories compared to the situation 30 years back. Not only are these children fat, but they are also physically weak, lacking strength. Hence, it is important to tackle the problem of childhood obesity in several ways. These measures include modified dietary habits coupled with more outdoor activity.