Friday, September 14, 2012

Adult Obesity Linked To Childhood Emotional Problems

A UK study suggests that children with emotional difficulties are at higher risk of becoming obese when they grow up, and while the researchers said the findings don't show that emotional problems like low self esteem, being overly worried or feeling less in control of one's life in childhood actually cause obesity in adulthood, they are a significant factor, alongside parental BMI, diet and exercise.

The study was the work of Andrew Ternouth, David Collier and Barbara Maughan from the MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre at the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, and is soon to be published online in the journal BMC Medicine.

Previous studies have suggested that people who are overweight or obese also have emotional problems like low self-esteem, but which causes the other is not clear.

The researchers also found that the link between childhood emotional problems and being overweight or obese in adulthood was slightly stronger in girls than it was in boys.

They concluded that:giiven the growing problem with childhood obesity in many western societies, these findings are particularly important. On a larger scale, they may offer hope in the battle to control the current obesity epidemic.

The researchers suggest that helping children with emotional difficulties like anxiety and low self esteem could improve their chances of being in better physical health as adults.



Adult Obesity Linked To Childhood Emotional Problems



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