Thursday April 19, 2018

Children at Risk: Obesity is not limited to the Urban Rich of India

The average increase in BMI is 3.5 percent in which men accounts for just 2 percent increase in BMI while women for 4.3 percent

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Yogita, Harsh and Anisha are the three obese siblings with the staggering weight of 34 kgs (5.3st), 15 kgs (2.5st)and 48 Kgs (7.5st)respectively at their residence in Gujarat, India. Photography by: Tanzeel Ur Rehman/ Cover Asia Press
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  • Obesity attracts cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and high blood pressure
  • Barker Hypothesis states that if an individual who are undernourished at time of foetal period suffers the problem in adult stage after becoming obese
  • Women between 25- 34 years of age are more prone to obesity as compared to all other ages

Obesity, commonly known as ‘Overweight’ has become a matter of concern in rural India. What’s worse? It has affected the children in particular that is not limited to the urban rich. Obesity is thought to be a disease by many but actually it is a symptom of several diseases and attracts numerous ailments like cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and high blood pressure.

Recent studies show that, rural India faced 8.6 fold increments in terms of obesity as compared to just 1.7 fold increment in urban India. To rate people healthy or unhealthy, BMI index is calculated. BMI index is the ratio of an individual’s height to his weight, mentions the Scroll.in report.

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An obese child in India. Image Source: Barcroft

A research by National Institute of Epidemiology in Tamil Nadu showed that young women are more prone to obesity than men. The average increase in BMI is 3.5 percent in which men accounts for just a 2 percent increase in BMI while women for 4.3 percent. Women between 25 to 34 years of age are more prone to obesity as compared to all other ages.

An obese girl in rural India. Image Source: Barcroft india

According to Scroll.in, a research in a village of Andhra Pradesh shows that 40 percent of its population is suffering from obesity while the number of underweight remains one third of the number of obese. The percentage of obese people is higher than that of prevalent in Punjab.

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Representational Image. Woman smoking. Image source: www.dailyjoint.com
Representational Image. Woman smoking. Image source: www.dailyjoint.com

One of the reasons of being obese is known as ‘thrifty phenotype’ or Barker hypothesis. It states that if an individual is undernourished at the time of foetal period, suffers the problem in adult stage after becoming obese. The other reasons that can be linked to obesity are frequent consumption of- alcohol, smoking, tobacco, sweets, food items including lots of fats, increment in the number of fast food shops, etc.

Obesity foundation of India. Image Source: obesityfoundationindia.com

To curb the problem of obesity, Government of India had come up with several campaigns to reduce weight and to aware people of its causes. One of the organization working towards it is, ‘Obesity foundation of India’ and is non profit in nature. It tries to curb influence of obesity by encouraging people to stop smoking.

Coke had recently launched ‘Live like Grandpa’ campaign. In March, it also came out with two other campaigns- ‘coming together’ which draws attention towards its low calorie drinks and ‘be Okay’, that makes people aware of the amount of calories contained in a can of Coca Cola.

-This report is compiled by a staff-writer at NewsGram.

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Next Story

Obesity Linked To Heart Rhythm Disorder

Obesity raises the risk of irregular heart rate

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Stop Obesity
Stop Obesity. Pixabay

Obesity may increase risk of developing a rapid and irregular heart rate, called atrial fibrillation, which can lead to stroke, heart failure and other complications, says a study of nearly 70,00 patients.

The findings, published in the journal American Journal of Cardiology, showed that people with obesity had a 40 per cent higher chance of developing atrial fibrillation than people without obesity.

Also Read: Obesity may affect a child’s liver

The results suggest that for patients with both obesity and atrial fibrillation, losing weight has the potential to help treat and manage their atrial fibrillation, said Andrew Foy, Assistant Professor at Penn State College of Medicine in the US.

“If you have both atrial fibrillation and obesity, treating obesity will go a long way in treating and managing your atrial fibrillation,” Foy said.

Our weight must be in our control.
Weight must be in control. Pixabay

“And if you have obesity, and lose weight through diet, exercise, or even surgery, that will help reduce your risk of developing chronic conditions like atrial fibrillation,” he added.

Atrial fibrillation happens when the electrical currents in the heart go haywire and the top chambers of the heart quiver or flutter.

The condition puts patients at a higher risk for developing other heart complications.

While previous research has linked obesity and atrial fibrillation, Foy said he wanted to explore the connection in a larger sample of younger patients.

Also Read: SURVEY – Obesity Becoming A Health Crisis Among The Asia-Pacific Children

The researchers followed a group of 67,278 patients — half with obesity and half without — for eight years. The average participant age was 43.8 and nearly 77 per cent were women.

People with obesity are 40 per cent more likely to develop atrial fibrillation, while they are 45 per cent and 51 per cent more likely to develop hypertension or diabetes, respectively, the findings showed.

The researchers also found that people with obesity are almost just as likely to develop atrial fibrillation as people with hypertension or diabetes.  IANS