29/05/2024 1:34 AM

Baen Scriptions

The Health Maniacs

Eating Disorders – A Dangerous Consequence of Childhood Eating Habits

2 min read

Disturbances in eating that may arise during infancy or early childhood and then through adolescence are nowadays being recognized as a very severe source of distress and problems for the one suffering from eating disorders and for their families as well.

An increasingly high number of studies reflect the fact that eating problems actually come from the period when infants, start eating “grown-up” food. The main cause is that once beginning to eat like adults, toddlers tend to develop adult eating habits. That is why, it is very important that parents set an example by renouncing junk food and starting eating healthily.

In an attempt to raise awareness upon the problem of childhood obesity outbreak during the last decades, The American Heart Association offers a set of guidelines regarding a healthy diet, appropriate for 2 year old children. According to the organism mentioned above, children have to eat a variety of the following: fruits and vegetables, whole grains and beans, low-fat dairy products, fish and lean meat.

Another very important aspect is physical activity – exercising and avoiding to lead a sedentary life. Beyond just healthy eating, young children also need plenty of exercise in order to avoid becoming obese and developing associated health problems, but also to develop good social skills and networking abilities.

In what adolescents are concerned, researchers have identified several key factors that often determine them to engage in very serious weight control behaviours. Especially the overweight refer to self-induced vomiting, the use of diet pills, laxatives, and diuretics, as well as binge eating in search of physical, but probably most crucial, making a push to find psychological balance.

Overweight youth who have a poor communication with their parents and rely on magazine articles or TV shows about dieting and weight loss to outline their lifestyle and eating habits are more exposed and thus likely to suffer from eating disorders.

An international team of researchers actually investigated the link between watching TV for several hours a day and its influence upon diet. Their conclusions were based on observing patterns of 2,000 secondary school children.

The authors of the study came to the conclusion that those subjects who watched television for longer than five hour daily, consumed fewer of the recommended food (fruits, vegetables, …). They preferred to have large amounts of snacks, fried foods, fast food, sugar-sweetened beverages. They were obviously prone to developing very unhealthy eating habits during their early adult life.

Although scientific research has been successful in areas including epidemiology, short-term treatment for Bulimia Nervosa (BN), and outcome in Anorexia Nervosa, there is an enormous amount of work that needs to be continued in the area of child and adolescent eating disorders.

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