The percentage of overweight children in western society has increased by almost 20% in the last ten years. Discuss the causes and effects of this disturbing trend.
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Band 8 IELTS essay sample
In this age of technology and convenience foods, there is an increase in the number / percent of overweight children. It is estimated that there was a 20% increase in the percentage of overweight children in the western societies in the last ten years. There are several reasons for the increasing obesity rate among children. The most important among them is the excessive consumption of fast food.
In most families now both parents work and due to their busy schedules, they rarely get time to cook. As a result, they subsist on easily available processed foods. Since children coming from such families consume fast food on a regular basis, their weight increases. Fast food ads targeting children are another reason that contributes to childhood obesity. Companies promote junk food as healthy and their attractive presentation lures kids into eating them. In addition, children today spend a lot of time watching TV and playing video games unlike in the past when children used to play outside under the sun. A survey conducted by the University of Guelph, Canada, reports that on average 75% of the children spend time inside the house watching videos after their school. All these factors eventually lead to weight gain among children.
Childhood obesity is a major health problem for two reasons. First, overweight children are more likely to develop health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure and cardiac trouble. Also, obese kids have considerably higher risk of becoming obese adults.
There are several ways to overcome this problem. Firstly, parents should find some time to cook at home instead of eating outside foods. Additionally, teachers should encourage the consumption of natural home cooked food. Also, the school syllabus should make sports and games mandatory for children. Studies have shown that physically active kids and adults are less likely to gain weight.
To conclude, it is a matter of fact that overweight children are a major public health concern in the western society. However, if parents, teachers and the government make a concerted effort this problem can be tackled effectively.
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